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Chasing Lance: The 2005 Tour de France and Lance Armstrong's Ride of a Lifetime (with 20 photos included) Hardcover – December 1, 2005

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Perfect to get you amped up about the season ahead . . . excellent insight into life behind the ropes at the Tour." -- Chris Brewer, ThePaceline.com

A bike racer mustn’t forget the random absurdities, insults, and delights the open road hurls at you. Martin Dugard hasn't. -- Bob Roll

About the Author

Martin Dugard is a NY Times bestselling author . He has also written for magazines such as Esquire and Sports Illustrated. He lives in California with his wife and 3 sons.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company; First Edition edition (December 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316166235
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316166232
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 0.9 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,479,701 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

New York Times bestselling author Martin Dugard is the co-author (with Bill O'Reilly) of Killing Jesus, Killing Kennedy, Killing Lincoln and Killing Patton. These four books have sold more than eight million copies.

In addition to history, Dugard specializes in chronicling the drive of great men to realize their potential. This can be seen in his trilogy on endurance sports: Surviving the Toughest Race on Earth (McGraw-Hill, 1998); Chasing Lance (Little, Brown; 2005), and To Be A Runner, is an inspiring and informational series of essays written from the viewpoint of Dugard's forty years as a distance runner.

Dugard's other books include The Murder of King Tut (co-written with bestselling author James Patterson), which saw Dugard travel to Egypt to unravel the centuries-old mystery of who murdered Tutankhamen, Egypt 's legendary boy king; The Training Ground (Little, Brown, 2008), the riveting saga of America's great Civil War generals during the Mexican War, when they were scared young lieutenants first learning the ways of war; The Last Voyage of Columbus (Little, Brown; 2005), Into Africa: The Epic Adventures of Stanley and Livingstone (Doubleday, 2003), Farther Than Any Man: The Rise and Fall of Captain James Cook (Pocket Books, 2001), and Knockdown (Pocket Books, 1999).

For the past eight years he has also put that knowledge to good use by spending his afternoons as the head cross-country and track coach at JSerra High School in San Juan Capistrano, California. His teams have qualified for the California State Championships four years in a row, and his girls team won the state title in 2010, 2011 and 2012.

He has also co-written three books with Mark Burnett, creator of Survivor and The Apprentice.

Dugard recently wrote and produced A Warrior's Heart, a coming-of-age film based around the sport of lacrosse. A Warrior's Heart stars Kellan Lutz and Ashley Greene.

An adventurer himself, Dugard regularly immerses himself in his research to understand characters and their motivations better. To better understand Columbus he traveled through Spain , the Caribbean, Central America, and sailed from Genoa to Spain aboard a tall ship in the manner of the great navigator. He followed Henry Morton Stanley's path across Tanzania while researching Into Africa (managing to get thrown into an African prison in the process), and swam in the tiger shark-infested waters of Hawaii 's Kealakekua Bay to recreate Captain James Cook's death for Farther Than Any Man.

Dugard competed in the Raid Gauloises endurance race three times, ran with the bulls in Pamplona on two occasions, and flew around the world at twice the speed of sound aboard an Air France Concorde. The time of 31 hours and 28 minutes set a world record for global circumnavigation. Dugard's magazine writing has appeared in Esquire, Outside, Sports Illustrated, and GQ, among others.

Martin Dugard lives in Orange County, California, with his wife and three sons.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Harry Simmon on February 23, 2006
Format: Hardcover
One expects a respected author like Martin Dugard to cover the sporting event of the 2005 tour thoroughly and interestingly. But the bonus in "Chasing Lance" is Dugard's magnificently reasoned and masterfully written reason why Lance has transcended sport to become an international icon.

One later chapter is great travel writing. Dugard parallels his process of self-discovery of why HE is chasing Lance with a description of his first-time visit to Lourdes. He interweaves his two thought trains so skillfully that when he finishes his tour of the grotto and winds up his personal and painful train of remembrance and reason, I was gifted with a new insight about myself. The chapter brought me through Lance's struggles to not only renew my appreciation for my cancer surviving wife, but also to see my own dreams and struggles, however meager, in both a more realistic light, and at the same time an even brighter one.

At the time of Armstrong's record 7th straight Tour win, I heard a major American TV business news anchor scoff at Armstrong's advertising appeal saying, "Hey, come on, it's BICYCLE racing!" as if no one cares much about it, not like baseball, for instance. But Dugard convinces the reader (like we needed convicing) that the Lance personna is far bigger than the man--and almost everywhere. What Dugard does so well is not only to describe both the race and the phenomenon, but what it is in US that causes us to hold the IDEA of Lance so special.

So far, Lance has published two volumes of autobiography and his mother's memoirs are also available. Beyond these, teammate Michael Barry offers us a look "Inside the Postal Bus" and outdoor writer Daniel Coyle tracks Lance's 2004 season and the genesis of his darker moods in "Lance Armstong's War".
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10 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Jeff G. Roberts on December 1, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Whether you've had the opportunity to witness the excitement and spectacle of the Tour de France in person, or have always dreamed of doing so, this book is the definitive word on the experience. Granted a coveted all-access pass to the Tour, Martin Dugard takes us on a thrill ride from the Prologue on the shores of Fromentine through the mammoth peaks of the Alps and Pyrenees and on to the finish on the hallowed Parisian cobbles of the Champs. The thing that makes this book so different from any previous works on Lance or the Tour is the way Dugard paints a vivid picture of the French people and places, fans from around the world, and most importantly of the man himself - Lance Armstrong. If you want to re-live your own personal Tour excursion (as my wife and I did), or have always wondered what it would be like - it's all here. As Martin takes us with him in his trusty Citroen along the roads and goat trails of France, you can almost smell the burning clutch as he conquers the Galibier; and you can almost taste the food as he enticingly describes a late-night meal at a rustic inn. Mixed in with his adventuresome stories are very interesting bits of history on the towns and the regions. He also effectively illustrates why the Tour has become the greatest sporting event in the world. Best of all, it's a very up close and personal view of Lance on his farewell Tour. Never before has a book so succinctly captured the spirit of the world's greatest athlete and his incredible life that has inspired hundreds of thousands - if not millions - of followers to travel across an ocean (like my wife and I) just for a glimpse of this man who simply loves to ride a bicycle. Quite simply, it's a must-read that you won't be able to put down. Se magnifique!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Eric V. Jacobson on March 7, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Marty Dugard does a great job capturing the ambience of this amazing race in print. I've been to the last 10 Tours and what I remember most about my trips to France are the kinds of episodes Mr. Dugard shares with his readers in this book. For those who love the race, it's more than just 189 guys in tight pants crawling up the Galibier; it's the countryside and the food and the spectators and the publicity caravan and 342 days of looking forward to the next Tour. Dugard captures all of it. I'll be there again this year and CHASING LANCE has already got me stoked.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By lipomaman on August 23, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Considering the wealth of information about Lance in other venues, this is a refreshing and unique perspective of the Tour with Lance as more of a backdrop and unifying theme. Definitely a more humanistic side is examined, and it satisfied my interest in more about the "behind the scenes" of the Tour. Reading Mr. Dugard's articles during the 2006 Tour were similarly incitefull and prompted me to read his book which was equally educational and entertaining.
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11 of 16 people found the following review helpful By J. Grattan VINE VOICE on December 28, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Chasing Lance is a good title for the book because it is mostly about a guy and his sports-writing pal chasing around France trying to cover the Tour de France. The book is more travelogue than anything. Covering the Tour for a foreigner comes across as difficult and chaotic: trying to navigate the confusing roads and differing terrain, finding open and unoccupied hotels and restaurants in the small towns that the Tour frequents, and dealing with the bureaucracy of the Tour. And this is for a guy who had the highest ranking press credentials allowing him to circumvent some of the roadblocks (literally in cases) and who had done this before.

The Tour is followed on a stage-by-stage basis but without the minute-by-minute detail of each stage race that some enthusiasts want. The author is more interested in Armstrong's relationship with his team, ex-team members (not good), and rivals. Armstrong's determination and will-to-win are emphasized, but there is very little of a concrete nature of his actual preparation for the tour. Armstrong comes across as more mysterious than understandable in this account. The difficulty of the Tour is repeatedly touched upon. The author discusses bicycling strategy in general and specific team tactics as the Tour unfolds. Other cyclists, mostly American, are looked at as they are trying for a day in the sun.

The author provides some interesting historical tidbits for various towns dating back to the time of the Romans as he traverses the country in a clockwise direction - the direction always taken by the Tour in odd-numbered years.

The book is brief, easily read in a matter of hours. It does tend to be an overview with a bit of this and a bit that in it. The idea is to give a hint at the flavor of the tour from both the spectator and participant standpoints. For some, the book will be found wanting. It needs to be more grounded - less unreal, less chaos, more consistent details.
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Chasing Lance: The 2005 Tour de France and Lance Armstrong's Ride of a Lifetime (with 20 photos included)
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