“The Secret Race: Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France” is a must-read for anyone directly involved in the sport. Daniel Coyle and Tyler Hamilton are authors of this impressive book. This is an outstanding book. It provides rich detail into the world of modern professional cycle racing. A very interesting and well-written book. Tyler is very believable and makes the case for how these athletes have evolved into dopers. If you still believe that Lance Armstrong is innocent, you need to read this book. It lays out a clear and convincing story of the inner world of doping in the sport. More importantly, The Secret Race tells the story of Tyler Hamilton, how he was caught up in the doping world and how he has risen above the challenges that doping imposed on his life. Tyler is a true champion and a champion of truth. The book is expertly written and is very easy to read. Hamilton’s journey through the 90’s doping crazed world of professional cycling carried him to the highest of highs to the lowest and beyond.
Woven throughout is the story behind his redemption. Co-author Coyle provides insightful “j-school 101” footnotes expanding and/or explaining Hamilton’s recollections. For anyone who has asked, “How did THIS happen to cycle?” Hamilton answers with a level of honesty that is refreshing. This should be required reading for student-athletes and NCAA hopefuls, as well as aspiring professional athletes of any genre. “The Secret Race” provides a unique view into the shadowy world of professional cycling. After reading Willy Voet’s “Breaking the Chain” and the entire USADA Reasoned Decision including all of the affidavits. The book also documents the various avoidance mechanisms and counter-measures that cyclists used to avoid dope tests and positive outcomes, and it provides a fascinating overview of why EPO is such a game-changer in a sport that has seen frequent use of other performance-enhancing drugs. Anyone who understands the big business of professional sport and does not naively believe that cyclists are bigger cheats than other sportsmen (when in fact cycling has the most rigorous anti-doping controls) will gain some insight into exactly why the use of EPO is so effective, specifically in the context of multi-day stage racing. All in all, this is a page-turner. Full of details about pro cycling, Lance Armstrong and the other key players in the Tour de France world at that time