Christian Vande Velde: Rider Profile
Christain Vande Velde, Tour de France 2009, stage 18
Date of Birth: 22/05/1976
From: Lemont, Illinois, U.S.A
Previous teams: US Postal (1998-2003) Liberty Serguros (2004) Team CSC (2005-2007)
Christian Vande Velde Career Profile
Christian Vande Velde is the son of Bicycling Hall of Fame inductee John Vande Velde. Making his professional debut in 1998 for the US Postal team, Christian quickly went on to have early success as part of the team that brought Lance Armstrong to victory in the 1999 Tour de France and again in 2001. Other career highlights include representing the US in the 2000 and 2008 Olympics.
From a young age Christian was a natural sportsman, graduating from Lemont High school in 1994 where he was named Most Valuable player in golf and Most Improved in wrestling. Christian’s true love was racing and in 1998 after a blistering amateur career where he was named Cycling Male Athlete of the year and winner of three National Championships at the U.S Olympic Training Centre, he was awarded with a contract with US Postal where he rode alongside Lance Armstrong.
After switching to Team CSC in 2005 his reputation as a domestique grew after successful races riding in support of Carlos Sastre and Frank Schleck, but it was the move to Slipstream in 2008 that finally brought the American into the limelight. Vande Velde thrived as a team leader and was the surprise package of 2008's Tour de France, finishing fifth in Paris (later promoted to fourth after Bernhard Kohl's disqualification).
A nasty fall in the 2009 Giro d'Italia and damage to an already fragile back looked to have scuppered the Garmin rider's Tour chances for that year, but he recovered well to finish eighth overall.
A quiet few years for Vande Velde then ensued, until 2012 brought him overall victory at USA Procycling Challenge, as well as the team time trial stage at the Tour of Utah, and a support role in the Giro d'Italia which contributed to teammate Ryder Hesjedal emerge as the overall winner.
2013 began for Vande Velde with a sidelined period due to a ban incurred for his use of performance enhancing drugs while with US Postal Service between 2004 and 2006. After a year riding in support of his team leaders, Vande Velde announced that the 2013 season would be his last.
Christian Vande Velde Results
USA Procycling Challenge
Tour of Utah; TTT
Tour de France; stage 12 TTT
Paris-Nice; stage four
Giro d’Italia; stage one TTT
Tour of Missouri; overall
Tour de Georgia; stage four
Tour de Luxembourg; overall
Eneco Tour of Benelux, Mountains Classification
Volta a Catalunya; stage one
Redlands Classic, overall
UCI World Cup, Individual Pursuit