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The Secret Race: Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France: Doping,… (original 2012; edition 2012)

by Tyler Hamilton, Daniel Coyle

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2561344,720 (4.06)4
Member:BlackjackNY
Title:The Secret Race: Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France: Doping, Cover-ups, and Winning at All Costs
Authors:Tyler Hamilton
Other authors:Daniel Coyle
Info:Bantam (2012), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 304 pages
Collections:Kindle
Rating:****
Tags:None

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The Secret Race: Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France: Doping, Cover-ups, and Winning at All Costs by Tyler Hamilton (2012)

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Showing 1-5 of 13 (next | show all)
This book was extremely eye-opening. Heartbreaking and disillusioning, but very well done. I still get the tiniest bit of feeling that Hamilton wants us to feel sorry for him, but at the same time it does appear that he has laid all of his dirty laundry out there for the world to see, and that takes courage. It will be interesting to watch the fallout from this book; I wish Hamilton the best in his future and much happiness. He is dead on when he talks of secrets being poison and that the truth will set you free. ( )
  Maureen_McCombs | Aug 19, 2016 |
I read this in almost one sitting while Tour de France coverage was playing in the background. A fascinating look inside the wild-west drug free-for-all of the Lance Armstrong years. In the end, I felt like I had more questions than answers, the most important of which was: What would I do? Could you give up your childhood dream and move back to America and sell tires… or would you take the needle and try to compete with the big boys? Frankly, I’m a bit afraid of what my answer would be. I admire Tyler Hamilton for admitting all. ( )
  memccauley6 | May 3, 2016 |
A book that could be described as the a study of the hero as everyman. This book was good. The story was well told and engaging. Yes it is a particular story, Tyler's story, and he comes across as likeable and understandable. It seemed, however that he made points that we should all consider, the old, well-worn mantra of "What would you do in the same situation?" Yes he doped. Yes he claims everyone did it, and given the statistics it seems he was correct. But several other points come out. Even though everyone doped, or almost everyone at least among the elite riders, those at the top, some still managed to do better than others, it took more than doping to achieve success. Some were more honest (relatively) than others, some were not. And the big question remains, the "what would you do". For the truth is that we are, for the most part, all Tyler Hamiltons. We all want to succeed, to be liked, to be in the cool crowd. We all tell ourselves little stories and little white lies to cover our less than laudable choices. Most of us ignore evidence of wrongdoing because it is too uncomfortable. Most of just hope that bad things will simply go away. Most of us are like Tyler Hamilton and the other riders who took dope because they just wanted a chance to succeed, to show what they could do, and who believed they had no other choice, even if that belief was wrong. Most are not willing to take the risk to stand up for our beliefs against all odds. Luckily most of us are not like Lance Armstrong either. It is true that he does not come out well in this book; it is not his book after all. At the same time, from an observer's standpoint, Hamilton never came across as particularly likable during the period of his Tour de France wins. But we don't always expect our heroes to be likeable and we sometimes confuse arrogance and confidence. In many ways Armstrong was and is a prisoner of his own success, his need to win. As Hamilton points out, winning goes to your head. It can make you think you are better than everyone else; it can make you forget that reality is much more fragile. This is a engaging, touching and humanizing book, a reminder of the tentative nature of our own humanity, as a reminder of the toll our yearning for superheros really takes, both on those we idolize and ourselves. ( )
  dooney | Aug 7, 2014 |
Fascinating story of temptation, shame and the deception of trying to keep a lie. It is a sad tale of what happens when we compromise a little and then justify failing to come clean by impure motives of protecting other from being found out too. ( )
  StanLubeck | Dec 28, 2013 |
This has been a difficult book for me to read because I am very against doping, and folks gaining an advantage by cheating. Sure, many of these riders have now come clean claiming mea culpa, but many of them are in positions of financial advantage because of their cheating ways (I am a rider myself).

The book itself is very well written, chock full of details, and maintains a great pace. I found myself easily drawn into the book, wanting to find out more, about the issue that everyone has known about, but no with all the dirty laundry aired out. I assume Daniel did all the writing, and it is very well done.

This book was thought provoking, and for that I can recommend it. How do we approach these cheaters? Do we categorically condemn them, or do we forgive them? Maybe it is best to learn from the past mistakes, struggle and aim to achieve a level playing field - one that isn't full of cheaters? ( )
  akl168 | Jun 20, 2013 |
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Coyle, Danielmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0345530411, Hardcover)

WINNER OF THE WILLIAM HILL SPORTS BOOK OF THE YEAR AWARD

The Secret Race is a definitive look at the world of professional cycling—and the doping issue surrounding this sport and its most iconic rider, Lance Armstrong—by former Olympic gold medalist Tyler Hamilton and New York Times bestselling author Daniel Coyle.
 
Over the course of two years, Coyle conducted more than two hundred hours of interviews with Hamilton and spoke candidly with numerous teammates, rivals, and friends. The result is an explosive book that takes us, for the first time, deep inside a shadowy, fascinating, and surreal world of unscrupulous doctors, anything-goes team directors, and athletes so relentlessly driven to succeed that they would do anything—and take any risk, physical, mental, or moral—to gain the edge they need to win.
 
Tyler Hamilton was once one of the world’s best-liked and top-ranked cyclists—a fierce competitor renowned among his peers for his uncanny endurance and epic tolerance for pain. In the 2003 Tour de France, he finished fourth despite breaking his collarbone in the early stages—and grinding eleven of his teeth down to the nerves along the way. He started his career with the U.S. Postal Service team in the 1990s and quickly rose to become Lance Armstrong’s most trusted lieutenant, and a member of his inner circle. For the first three of Armstrong’s record seven Tour de France victories, Hamilton was by Armstrong’s side, clearing his way. But just weeks after Hamilton reached his own personal pinnacle—winning the gold medal at the 2004 Olympics—his career came to a sudden, ignominious end: He was found guilty of doping and exiled from the sport.
 
From the exhilaration of his early, naïve days in the peloton, Hamilton chronicles his ascent to the uppermost reaches of this unforgiving sport. In the mid-1990s, the advent of a powerful new blood-boosting drug called EPO reshaped the world of cycling, and a relentless, win-at-any-cost ethos took root. Its psychological toll would drive many of the sport’s top performers to substance abuse, depression, even suicide. For the first time ever, Hamilton recounts his own battle with clinical depression, speaks frankly about the agonizing choices that go along with the decision to compete at a world-class level, and tells the story of his complicated relationship with Lance Armstrong.
 
A journey into the heart of a never-before-seen world, The Secret Race is a riveting, courageous act of witness from a man who is as determined to reveal the hard truth about his sport as he once was to win the Tour de France.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:58 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Hamilton pulls back the curtain on the Tour de France and takes us into the secret world of professional cycling like never before: the doping, the lying, and his years as Lance Armstrong's teammate on U.S. Postal.

(summary from another edition)

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