I love everything about cycling in South Carolina. The routes that wind through these hills are beloved not only by local cyclists, but by many of my friends both past and current Tour athletes. I chose this region as my personal training arena for its resemblance to the Alpine climbs and rolling hills I grew to love in Europe. I am excited about being able share my passion for the area with VeloGuide guests. If you don't see a date that works, contact VeloGuide on the "Chat with us" and make your request. They will do their best to make something work!
First, George is incredibly friendly and genuinely personable. Just a pleasure to spend time with George, on or off the bike. Second, it is a bucket list experience to have someone of George's accomplishments and experience be your personal domestique. We did the Caesar's Head climb on a very hot day with George riding along me pouring cold water on my head while yelling encouragement, then got a personal lesson in high speed descending and finished by getting towed along at 28 mph on the flats.. Epic!! My wife was jealous and she does not rides bikes. Third, George knows every inch of every road within miles. Describe what kind of ride you want and that is the ride you will get. Highest recommendation.
The trip to Greenville proved to be more than I ever could have expected. I went with my wife and stayed at George's Hotel Domestique--a first-rate facility and we both loved it. The next morning, I met George. If you know anything about professional cycling, it's hard at first not to be a little star struck. He is in the conversation of greatest American cyclists EVER. But you wouldn't know any of that after you spend 5 minutes with him. He's easy going and friendly, and his first objective was to make sure I had a great time. He knows perhaps every road on this side of South Carolina -- and across the border into North Carolina -- in an area that features rolling hills, steep climbs and the prettiest landscape you could imagine. You see why George and other cyclists call Greenville home. It features the best cycling the U.S. has to offer. An important part of a good ride for me is the people I ride with. And George was a great riding partner. We talked about everything under the sun--work, family, hobbies, and of course, cycling. If you ask, George can teach you the more technical aspects of a good climb or speedy descent. I emphasize, ask George. He'll talk about any and all aspects of professional cycling--his career, his teammates, and, yes, the uglier side of the sport he is in his retirement now determined to change. Oh yea, I should mention too that George may invite some of his friends along, including his neighbors Bobby Julich and Christian Vande Velde, both decorated former professional cyclists as well. And class acts like George. The whole experience was a cyclist's dream. I'll be back. Very soon.
When George agreed to join the VeloGuide team I was super stoked and was his first VeloGuide Guest! I did not have a lot of time so the ride he took me on was a nice quite loop that left from Hotel Domestique toward Greenville and back. It was cool to have a one on one experience with a `17 time Tour de France rider. Lots of cool stories and a super fun ride. I have since been back to Greenville several times on VeloGuide business and have done a few more rides with George, Christian, Bobby J and even surprise guest Cadel Evans. VeloGuide Pro is an incredible way to get up and close with your favourite pro cyclist.
Getting out of downtown Greenville is so easy. It is one of the best cities around where you can have world class cycling minutes away. My favorite ride is either downtown Greenville to Ceasers Head and back or departing Hotel Domestique to Green River Cove loop . Another great ride wich is easy to get to is downtown to Paris Mountain and back . This is perfect for those who want a challenge but only have a short window to ride.
I began racing as a young boy in Queens, New York, when my father introduced me to the sport. Prior to joining the professional ranks, I was fortunate to win 10 junior national titles and two world medals. The following 19 years brought victories in a record 17 Ronde van Vlaanderen races and a most memorable second-place finish at the grueling Paris-Roubaix. A proud moment which was the best placement of any American. During my time as a Pro, I competed 17 times in the Tour de France and won three U.S. National Road Race championships.
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