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The Loyal Lieutenant: Leading Out Lance and Pushing Through the Pain on the Rocky Road to Paris Hardcover – May 27, 2014


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow; 2ND edition (May 27, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062330918
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062330918
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (160 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #57,444 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Professional cycling entails more strategy than everyone on a team pedaling as fast as they can for as long as they can. Hincapie was Lance Armstrong’s teammate through all of Armstrong’s now-discredited seven Tour de France victories, setting the pace and thus the table for Armstrong’s triumphs. He also became Armstrong’s best friend. Hincapie is respected within the cycling world so his biography will have cachet among fans of the sport. He recounts his youth in Queens, ascribing his love of the sport to his father, and then details his successes as an amateur, an Olympian, and a professional, including race-by-race accounts. Hincapie is now an advocate of “clean” cycling, despite the fact his and Armstrong’s reign atop the international racing world was fueled by performance-enhancing drugs. Hincapie is retired now so the high road is easily accessible to him as he expresses his regrets over the doping years. Readers will have to determine for themselves if his mea culpa is sincere. Expect demand; America loves a redemption tour, and this book will be Hincapie’s vehicle. --Wes Lukowsky

Review

“A well-written book encompassing all the things I like about sports and sports heroes--the trials and tribulations, the drama, and the choices . . . I think this book will make everyone who reads it, if they are honest, ask ‘What would I have done?’” (Ty Murray, "King of the Cowboys," nine-time world champion in rodeo)

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Customer Reviews

Great story on the career of one of cycling's heroes!
Wayne Tarr
Hincapie is an incredibly gifted athlete and the story of his record setting number of Tour de France races is well told.
Kenny
This book reads like yet another doper trying to validate their poor decision quality.
Premium7

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Going into this book, I had two questions, (1) Would Hincapie be honest about his years of doping on the U.S. Postal team? And (2) is this book worth reading for somebody who has already read Tyler Hamilton's book and Cycle of Lies? The answer to both questions is yes.

Hincapie occupies a curious place in the pantheon of great American riders. He was incredibly strong but he didn't win many races, instead shepherding others across the finish line. He doped, though the doping culture probably hurt him more than most (Jonathan Vaughters makes the point repeatedly that Hincapie's hemocrit was naturally so high that he benefitted less from EPO than perhaps any other rider in the peloton). He is considered a classics rider, though he never won any of the great classics (Gent-Wevelgem in 2001 is as good as it got). And he was both a fierce competitor and, by reputation, an incredibly nice guy.

That last point comes across clearly in this book. While the material is in some regards similar to that in Hamilton's book, Hamilton is constantly obsessed with his own performance, his own pain, and slights by other riders. Hincapie, by comparison, is concerned with his ability to support his team and his family. It's easy to understand how he earned his reputation, and why, when word got out that he had testified against Lance Armstrong, that nobody would ever believe Armstrong's denials again.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful By BAS2 on June 18, 2014
Format: Hardcover
Just finished the Loyal Lieutenant. As a long-time cycling fan, I was hoping to read about some juicy insider anecdotes, funny stories and good plain old dirt about cycling during the Lance era, but Quiet George lives up to his nickname.

TV commentator and co-author Craig Hummer's writing doesn't do Hincapie any favors - the quotes from friends, family and teammates make the book more of a a jumpy play-by-play and color commentary from a TV script than an auto-biography. LL reads more like a long list of testimonials from job references as the book goes on.

Lieutenant doesn't satisfy- George states he was a do-what-it-takes bike racer and drugs were what it took to survive in the 90s, plain and simple. And by "survive," he means win 7 consecutive Tours de France and all the trappings - cars, women, money - that comes with it.

His explanation that he suddenly decided to race clean in the last years of his career in order to be a role model and show you can win without drugs didn't quite wash with me. He puts himself in a lot of paradoxical situations, like criticizing former teammates for suspected doping (aka "being competitive") while at the same time riding for teams that had dopers on them. In another instance, Hincapie explains that drugs, to him, mean EPO and blood boosting, but other drugs, like testosterone, are not drugs- and since he had such an even-keeled pro career for nearly 20 years, it's hard to fully understand what he means by "race clean."

The reader can infer more from what Hincapie doesn't say than what he does. I came away feeling that George didn't think you can win the Tour de France without drugs, but you could win a shorter race.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By tsw on August 9, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
The negative reviews are on the money -- George may be a "great guy" and an incredible rider, but he lacks self-awareness in this memoir. He spends about one third of the book justifying his cheating and later epiphany to ride clean, all the while castigating those who came clean before him and the investigations that dragged on because Postal, et al, lied for years and years. To cap it off, George never acknowledges the bullying, intimidation, and threats that were SOP for Lance & Co., yet George goes to great lengths expressing his indignation regarding former teammates denying him a day in yellow late in his career, and Horner chasing him down on his last run into Paris. Pretty pathetic stuff.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Premium7 on July 8, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I like George Hincapie the man.

This book reads like yet another doper trying to validate their poor decision quality. It reads like George Hincapie trying to convince readers that he isn't as bad a doper as the others. 'I stopped doping years ago and tried to get other people to stop too...'.

It was a book I enjoyed reading but overall I didn't buy Georges' nice guy, 'I'm not like the others, trust me' message.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By tom blake on June 12, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
If you like Big George, don't read the book. Poorly written, contradictory and nothing but a big commercial for himself. Wait for Floyd's book. The only interesting stories in here were about him or Chris Horner.
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24 of 32 people found the following review helpful By james stewart on June 1, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was excited for this book to be released but it was a huge let down... He obviously knew people wanted to hear the real behind the scenes stuff that was touched on in The Secret Race and Wheelmen but completely glossed over it as if it was of no matter.... and the book in general in jubbled, confusing, and over all dull..Tyler Hamilton, David Millar, and Mark Cavendish books I couldn't put down. This one I had to force myself to finish.
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