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September 24, 2017
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  • Keir

    All the best Campbell with whatever you may do in the future. This young mans honesty is refreshing and while some may suggest he has taken a position that some other aspiring young cyclist could have taken, it goes to show that until you are put into a situation a long way from your physical or geographical comfort zone you don’t really know if it is for you.

  • Dave

    Time to face an uncomfortable fact – BMC is a team that young riders should avoid.

    • Tim

      Except that Campbell said that he considered quitting even before signing with them…

    • Kane

      Ridiculous comment

    • Strydz

      Van Garderen, Phinney, Dennis, Kung would all disagree

  • Rocky

    its tough out there in the real world making your own way , if you aren’t up to it best thing is to go home.

    • Samaway

      Yeah, the “real world” of pro cycling – good one

      • A

        Yeah. Truth is many paths in life are as difficult as pro cycling and no path is easy… But I myself did not understand this until my 30s.

        • Samaway

          @disqus_MBaRpiIUcx:disqus Agreed – and didn’t mean to sound dismissive :)

      • Rocky

        Being away from home and having to earn your crust clever clogs!

  • JKJ

    At least you gave it a go ! How many of us have quit a job ? Most I reckon ! Possibly you choose the wrong team ! So what, at least you know you have the talent !

  • Conspiracy Theory: He saw how prevalent doping really is, and understands what he needs to do to be competitive in a Grand Tour and his integrity held up, and he decided to take a different career while he is still young enough to.
    Not a bad decision – most major universities will give him a nice healthy scholarship.

  • velocite

    Speaking for myself, we tend to live a lot of our lives on rails, following a path that we didn’t design. I’m impressed that a young man qualified and with the opportunity to do what a lot of people think they would love had the courage to get off those rails. And maybe his story adds to our appreciation of the athletes who persevere.

  • Strydz

    Van Garderen, Phinney, Dennis, Kung would disagree

    • Wish I was on the bike…

      The only place I’d differ from you Strydz is to replace the word ‘admit’ with ‘recognise’. ‘Admit’ implies a failing and I don’t see a failing in this case. All the best to Flakemore in what ever he does next!

  • Your going to see a lot of supposed super stars quitting as word gets out that the newest drug testing is about to do to the peloton what its done for the Russians in the prior Olympics recently.

    • Truth

      You’re an idiot. Have you even read one article about the Russians?

      The hysteria there is not about new drug testing. It’s that the Russians had corrupted their anti doping agency so no positive tests were ever recorded.

  • The drug culture is still very much alive here. I predicted Lances fall years before it happened and the pervasive nature of drugs in cycling ( I came from over 23 yrs of bicycle road racing BTW) and posted a comment that many will be “suddenly retiring” from the sport as the newest detection systems come on line in more sports and those bent on being afraid to look at this as motive to quit while appearing to be on top are deleting my post. I see that as proof the drug culture is still putting lipstick on pigs.

    • The comment was deleted because it was baseless and potentially defamatory. It was also an uneducated statement. You can’t say that deleting a comment like that has anything to do with us perpetuating drug culture.

      • Bex

        oh you managed to understand the second last ‘sentence’, kudos to you. Who can tell what that comment has to do with a young mans decision not to pursue a path in life he finds does not bring him joy. I say good on Campbell for making a hard decision to walk away from something he is obviously extremely talented at for the hope of finding something that’ll bring enjoyment to his life.

      • Baseless based on your limited education about drug detection technologies. I work in the field. Inflammatory? If you squeeze a lemon you get lemon juice. If you squeeze a tomatoe you get tomatoe juice. If you squeeze an inflammatory person hiding behind inner smoke screens you get…? This is a free world. I can say what I will. Your responsible for your thoughts and feeling about it not I. Be adult… Take ownership of your perceptions. There is a storm coming to clean up this inbred mess.

        • You can say what you want on your own site, twitter account, FB etc. We’re legally responsible for the conversation that goes on here and anything libel will be moderated. Please read our T&C’s here: https://cyclingtips.com.au/termsandconditions/

        • Truth

          Land surfer, you implied that the Russians were busted because of new testing. Like I said, they were busted because WADA picked up on the Russian anti doping agency covering things up.

          We are talking about wholesale conspiracy and fraud all the way up to the FSB (secret police), not innovation in drugs or testing.

          Nobody here is saying that cycling doesn’t have its own issues. It’ll take a long time before anyone can suggest cycling is drug free.

          But somehow suggesting that cycling “is next” based on what’s happened in track and field is completely disingenuous. If you fail to see that it says more about you and the chip you obviously have on your shoulder than it does anyone else.

          And to be honest and without getting into name calling, bringing the “Russian experience” back to a young lad who’s clearly decided that the life of a professional cyclist isn’t for him makes you a person that I wouldn’t want to share a beer with.

          • I’m not a part of the alcoholics cult of cycling either.

            *Erskien Lenierhttp://LandSurfingPro.com *

            • BlandSurfer

              “alcoholics cult of cycling”? Who is this guy? LOL
              More to the point, where can I join this cult?

              • Just think of me as “not one of the sheeple” – I am awake… You can go back to sheep now…

                *Erskien LenierMobile: 951-515-8905http://LandSurfingPro.com *

                • Marc

                  While The Venus Project is great and I’m convinced the world would be a much better place if we all took part in it, your comments are way below par. It’s just a bit of name calling without any substance. Be specific or don’t say anything at all, now you just look like a pretentious pr$%$.

                • Adrian

                  “I am awake”
                  Yeah, having a hair brained idea then defending yourself with the conspiracy theorists mantra is not a defence. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof.

        • Jj

          If I squezzed your brain Id get idiot juice

        • Matt DeMaere

          More ellipsis and Descartes please.

        • Michele

          Erskien, checked out your webpage. Interesting.

          I think the page “How I Can Help You” sums it up perfectly.

          • I’m actually building this blog while you’re jumping to silly conclusions. Ever notice what happens when one dog barks in the neighborhood? They all bark… For what? They thought they heard something….

            • Michele

              LOL. Cheers …

              Your comment just reinforces my point.

              BTW – judging by your previous posts … you’ve been doing a lot of jumping.

              Rather than suggest everyone is on the dope – prove it. You “obviously” have the evidence.

              Here’s a thought. Finish building your site and blog away until your heart’s content.

        • roadiesean

          ADULT ? You can’t even spell TOMATO ! I must be an expert in poor spelling detection. Wade is right, its his site, he gets to choose. If you are an expert, write a report, or an article with said expertise. But, hey ! And this is important, get your spelling right. I bet you’re one of those guys that spell the thing that slows you down on a bike or in a car BREAK. Enough said now. Lots of love and good grammar, the Spelling Police.

  • jon

    Ballsy decision. Best of luck.

  • Robert Merkel

    Just like to echo those wishing Campbell best for the future whatever he chooses to do.

    For anybody who has read a few sporting biographies, it’s not hard to understand why the life of a professional sportsperson, particularly a pro cyclist, is not for everyone. Heck, there are plenty of people his age who drop out of “prestigious” university courses when they discover that merely having the talent to do something is not the same as wanting to do it for the rest of your life.

    • Neil

      So, i managed to get passed LandSurfers uninformed, nonsensical diarhoea above and found an eminently sensible comment.
      Couldn’t agree with you more Robert. All the best Campbell.

  • jules

    I can only compare myself now to 20 years previously when I first starting competitive cycling. I was mentally weaker back then and quit the sport for a long time, as I wasn’t enjoying the challenge of committing myself to training enough to be competitive. I didn’t even really understand that back then. We need to remember these are young people with limited life experience and who have denied themselves so much to advance as competitive cyclists. It should be no shock that they unravel and reportedly – depression (I’m not saying Campbell was depressed – but he sure wasn’t happy by his own admission) is a chronic issue in pro sports. If I had my 20 yr old body and 40 yr old mind, I’d be doing nicely in A grade I reckon.

    • Sean Doyle

      Exactly. I definitely look back on where my head was at that same stage and there was no way I understood what was need to terms of application, time management and dedication required to gain those sorts of lofty heights. I was at least into my early 30’s before a lot of stuff dawned on me and I was able to put some decent amateur success together. Elevating quite young adults and some juniors to that rarefied level of pro sports is fraught with potentially scaring experiences. Kudos to his self awareness to not wastes every bodies time, including his in not pushing on something he was 100% committed to.

  • jasjaz

    Great insight. Cam comes across as a thoughtful contemplative individual seeking a better future. Kudos to him, rather than “drifting with the stream”, he is actively seeking that future. I am sad that I will not see his cycling exploits but rejoice in his life affirming journey….Bon chance!

  • Jude Cosier

    Brave decision, I applaud him. It’s not enough to be talented….talent is common. You must have commitment and passion above talent to be successful.

  • Rob Arnold

    A year ago, in an interview with Campbell not long after he won the worlds, my final question was:
    “It’s bike riding. It’s a privilege. It should be fun. It should be an awesome job. Everyone sort of thinks that if you get offered the pro contract, you’ve got to jump at it but was there ever a moment when you hesitated and thought, ‘Oh, maybe I’ll go and become a doctor or something else…’?”


    Even then there was a tone of indecision, so I’m most impressed with Campbell’s eventual arrival at a firm decision.

    • ed

      Rob – the story is not about you!!
      There is nothing wrong with walking away from something you dont have your heart in that is conflicting with other goals.
      I often wonder with regards to these young guys how they deal with the non-cycling issues when they have to look after themselves once graduated from all the development programs that did all that stuff for them.
      Makes you respect even more the achievement sof guys like Anderson, Stephens, Hodge, Piper, Wilson etc 30 years ago who carved out successful pro-cycling careers with little to no assistance.

      Good luck to him.

      • Rob Arnold

        Never did I suggest this was about me. I’m just pointing out that, during my discussion with Campbell, it became apparent that he was happy to be a cyclist but it should never simply be assumed that if an offer is issued, an acceptance must follow…
        Yes, I have a great deal of respect for those who have made their mark in professional cycling but I also have a lot of respect for a young man who can make up his own mind about what they want from his future.
        I agree with you 100 per cent: good luck to him.

        • Teezy

          “I was just struggling a lot and those sort of thoughts were going through my mind a fair bit. ‘I can’t compete with these guys, and I’m just suffering, and I’m getting beaten, and I’m away from home, and it’s too hard…”

          That’s not an indecisive tone, more ‘direct statement’, and one which you somewhat ignored at the time by headlining the article with ‘Flakemore ready for the World Tour.” Implying that you knew this was coming all along – but only after Campbell made the announcement – is such a classic example of Arnold self-aggrandisement that it probably should be printed, framed and hung on the walls of the RIDE offices as some sort of editorial template, or guiding statement. Nice advertorial in the CT forum, btw.

          • John

            Maybe he could take your suggestion on board, and “print, frame and hang it up” along with Wade’s rather complimentary comments.

          • ed

            ha ha – must be the first time he didn’t plug his book about cadel – “close to flying” – he always makes note that he wrote that book.

            • Jake(Aus)

              I think yas are being a bit harsh on Rob, he pretty much just pointed out that he’d seen the signs of indecision earlier in Flakemore’s career…settle down.
              We get it, the guy tried to be a pro cyclist and quit…he’s an all round Australian hero.

          • Cynic


            Must have missed that article, probably because I don’t buy cycling’s version of the late night TV advertorial channel.

  • Ian Jones

    stay strong, young man.

  • KJD

    Anything worth doing in life takes effort
    ….and appreciation for the journey. Go home and fly your Mom and Dad’s couch, young man

  • lobo

    some people with lack of talent show determination, discipline and sacrifice to make up what they lack of and succeed, and some people with a lot of natural talent because it is easier for them to succeed usually show lack of determination and sacrifice and don’t succeed and this not only happens in cycling but does happen in any activity and hard work rather than just raw talent usually pays off .

    • mcnute

      Lack of determination? I wonder if you’ve ever seen a road bike in real life :-))) Prevail in the Under 23 category internationally, winning a world title, get a contract with BMC: you don’t get even close to these achievements without determination, no matter how much “talent” you have. Talent is only one of many factors you need to address in order to get this far. Before posting wise phrases here, you should rethink your own achievements before judging others. CF thought 18 months before taking his decision, you didn’t even think a second before sharing your life wisdoms.


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