I’ll tell you this book on the beginnings of American professional road cycling in the 1980s reads good, smells good, and has lots of good photos (color and B&W). I received this book over the weekend and devouted it. I won’t have time to post a review before Interbike, so I’ll just say “thumbs up” and post the press material for now.
If you’d rather skip the marketing fluff and go get the book already, here’s the link to Powell’s Books.
In 1980, there were exactly four professional bike racers in America. Six years later, an American cycling team would wear the coveted yellow jersey of the Tour de France. And that same team would go on to win Italy’s greatest race—the Giro d’Italia—only two years later. Team 7-Eleven is the extraordinary story of how two Olympic speed skaters, Jim Ochowicz and Eric Heiden, pulled together a small group of amateur cyclists and turned them into one of the greatest cycling teams the sport has known. From humble beginnings in a barn in Pennsylvania to soaring victories in the French Alps, Team 7-Eleven is the complete history that has never been fully told—until now.
The 7-Eleven Cycling Team launched the careers of American cycling superstars Andy Hampsten, Davis Phinney, Bob Roll, Ron Kiefel, and many more. It also changed the cycling world, creating a new team structure based on multiple stars, unified goals, and personal sacrifice for the greater good. And yet at the time it was formed, the number of American cyclists with world-class experience could be counted — literally — on one hand. And the number of American teams that competed in Europe’s biggest races was exactly zero.
Team 7-Eleven is the amazing story of how two cycling fans found one exceptional sponsor and created the greatest American cycling team of its era.
Written with the enthusiastic cooperation of the team members, Team 7-Eleven will impress cycling fans with behind-the-scenes stories of the team’s founding, its growing pains, and its lasting success as the team that established America as a powerhouse in the world of professional cycling.
About the Authors
Geoff Drake is the former editor of VeloNews and the former editor of Bicycling magazine. As editor of VeloNews, he covered the 7-Eleven team’s exploits in the team’s most important years.
Jim Ochowicz is a former Olympic cyclist and currently the manager of the BMC professional cycling team. Ochowicz created the 7-Eleven team and its successors, the Motorola Cycling Team and the U.S. Postal Cycling Team, with whom Lance Armstrong won seven Tour de France overall victories.
Buy from Powell’s Books: Team 7-Eleven: How an Unsung Band of American Cyclists Took on the World – and Won. With forewords by Eric Heiden and Eddy Merckx