Saturday, November 08, 2008
If it weren't for Lance Armstrong a lot more people would know who Bobby Julich is. He was the first American after Greg LeMond to be a top notch stage racer in Europe, and came in third in the Tour de France the year before Armstrong won his first. In 2006, he had one of the best years of any any American rider when he won three major stage races, including being the first American to win Paris-Nice, a bronze in the Olympics, and second overall in the ProTour. He retired this season and will move into a managerial role with Saxo Bank (formerly CSC) next year.
Most likely because he always rode for European teams he never got a lot of press in the US. Most American fans were probably more aware of Lance's domestiques than Julich. This is too bad because I'm sure we could learn a lot more about the European racing scene from Bobby J than any other US rider. His 17 year career is re-caped with an interview here at Cyclingnews.