Bobby Julich

Bobby Julich
Personal information
Full name Robert Julich
Nickname Bobby J
Born (1971-11-18) November 18, 1971
Corpus Christi, Texas, United States of America
Height 1.81 m (5 ft 11 in)
Weight 72 kg (159 lb)
Team information
Current team Retired
Discipline Road
Role Rider
Rider type Time-trialist/Climber
Amateur team(s)
1988–1991 US National Team
Professional team(s)
1992 Spago
1994 Chevrolet
1995–1996 Motorola
1997–1999 Cofidis
2000–2001 Crédit Agricole
2002–2003 Team Telekom
2004–2008 Team CSC
Major wins
Critérium International (1998, 2005)
Paris–Nice (2005)
Eneco Tour (2005)
Tour de l'Ain (1997)
Route du Sud (1997)
Infobox last updated on
October 25, 2012

Robert Julich, popularly called Bobby Julich, (born on November 18, 1971, in Corpus Christi, Texas) is an American former professional road bicycle racer who last rode for Team CSC in the UCI ProTour racing series. He got his international breakthrough when he finished 3rd overall in the 1998 Tour de France, becoming only the second American to finish on the podium. He is a strong time trialist who won a silver medal at the 2004 Olympic Individual Time Trial, and combined with his high versatility he has won a number of stage races on the international circuits including the 2005 edition of Paris–Nice. In September 2008, he announced his retirement as a professional cyclist.[1]

He served as a technical director for Team Saxo Bank until November 2010, when it was announced that he would move to Team Sky for the 2011 season as a race coach.[2] On October 25, 2012, Team Sky announced that Julich would part ways with the team due to his admission to doping in the past. This departure is therefore in line with Team Sky's policy (re-asserted in the wake of the USADA Reasoned Decision and subsequent UCI/Lance Armstrong fall-out) of asking all current team personnel to admit to any past doping offences.[3] After leaving Sky Julich worked as a coach for BMC Racing Team in 2014 before being announced by Team Tinkoff-Saxo as the team's head coach for 2015,[4] however in August 2015 he confirmed that he would leave the team at the end of the year.[5]


Born in Texas, Julich has resided in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, since childhood, with a brief time in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he met his wife.[6] Most of his living relatives reside in the New York area. Bobby Julich got his start in cycling winning the Red Zinger Mini Classics youth bicycle race in 1985. As an amateur cyclist Bobby Julich won the 1990 Junior National Cyclo-Cross Championship, and as a member of the US National Team he participated in the 1991 Tour DuPont. At the time it was the biggest stage race in the United States, and Julich finished 5th overall in a race which included fellow American cyclist and 3-time Tour de France winner Greg LeMond. Bobby won the award for the Best Young Rider and was heralded as the next Greg LeMond.

After a few "false" starts as a professional, he joined the Motorola team in 1995 alongside Italian rider Andrea Peron and fellow Americans Lance Armstrong and George Hincapie. In the 1996 season, Bobby Julich was diagnosed with re-entrant supraventricular tachycardia (RSVT),[7] a heart condition which meant his heart would beat much faster than normal. Julich was treated with radiofrequency ablation and was ready for the 1996 Vuelta a España late in the season, a race which showed the first glimpses of his potential in international professional cycling. There, Julich held the King of the Mountains jersey for ten stages. Despite a strong performance he relinquished the jersey but did finish 9th overall, the highest placing ever by an American in the Vuelta up until Lance Armstrong finished 4th overall in 1998. It was this performance that made other teams in the peloton take notice of Julich.

When Motorola ended its sponsorship at the end of the 1996 season he joined the French Cofidis team with a few fellow Motorola teammates, including Lance Armstrong. Armstrong's cancer meant that he was not able to compete with the team, while Julich went on to participate in the 1997 Tour de France. The embattled 1998 Tour de France was a breakthrough for Julich, when he took over the team leadership from Italian Francesco Casagrande. Following the doping scandal of the 1998 Tour, only 96 of 189 riders completed the race, and Bobby Julich finished third on the podium with winner Marco Pantani and runner-up Jan Ullrich. Julich was hailed as the next American Tour de France champion and he was once more proclaimed to follow in the footsteps of Greg LeMond.[8] The 1999 Tour de France saw Julich as one of the favorites for the overall win, but a crash during an individual time trial forced him to quit the race, which was in turn won by the recovered Lance Armstrong.

For the 2000 season, Julich moved to another French team Credit Agricole, joining compatriot Jonathan Vaughters. He was part of the Credit Agricole team that won the team time trial stage of the 2001 Tour de France. After a move to Team Telekom of Germany in 2002, Julich rode as a domestique in support of his team captain Jan Ullrich. Julich only enjoyed lacklustre results, and at the end of the 2003 season he contemplated retiring.[9]

Despite an offer below his wages at Team Telekom,[9] Bobby Julich moved to the Danish outfit Team CSC in the 2004 season, where he joined up with former Motorola team mate Andrea Peron. He once again rode as a supporting rider in the Tour de France, but with the freedom to pursue his own chances during the rest of the season. Julich immediately saw his riding and performance improve, as he won a time-trial in the April 2004 race Tour of the Basque Country, his first victory since the 1998 season. With Team CSC team mate Jens Voigt, a rider Julich rode with in his time at Credit Agricole, he also won the two-man time trial LuK Challenge. Bobby Julich won a silver medal in the 2004 Summer Olympics men's individual time trial event behind Russian Viatcheslav Ekimov.

Julich's renaissance continued in 2005 with his best-ever professional season, becoming the first American to win Paris–Nice. He also won the Critérium International and the Eneco Tour, making Julich the 8th ranked rider in the UCI ProTour, helping Team CSC become the highest ranked team of 2005.

For the 2006 season, Julich planned to conserve energy for helping Team CSC captain Ivan Basso in his winning bid for both the 2006 Giro d'Italia in May and 2006 Tour de France in July. Even though he did not start his season as strongly compared to 2005, he managed to finish 3rd at the Tour of California in February and he won the prologue of Paris–Nice in March, results that even positively surprised Julich himself.[10] For the very first Giro d'Italia participation in his career, Julich had early aspirations of conquering the maglia rosa leader's jersey early in the race to lessen the pressure on Basso.[10] However, Julich suffered heavily from pollen allergy throughout the race, and he did not play a major role himself, but focused on helping Ivan Basso, as Basso won the 2006 Giro. In the 2006 Tour de France, Julich abandoned the race after he suffered a crash on the stage 7 individual time trial. He went into a turn too fast, slid on small pebbles, and he severely injured his wrist when falling.[11]

In May 2011, Tyler Hamilton, the winner of the men's time trial at the 2004 Summer Olympics, confessed that he had used doping products, and returned his gold medal. On August 10, 2012, Bobby Julich was upgraded from the bronze to the silver medal.

In May 2013, he joined BMC Racing Team as a consultant.[12] In November 2014, it was announced that Julich would join Tinkoff-Saxo as head coach, reuniting with Sean Yates (former sports director of Team Sky) and team founder and manager Bjarne Riis.[13] Julich and Yates left after Riis's firing later in 2015.


On October 25, 2012, Julich admitted to "using EPO several times from August 1996 until July of 1998". and resigned from the United Kingdom-based Team Sky.[14] The team had issued a statement asking both riders and support staff to sign a document verifying that they did not use or administer performance-enhancing drugs during their careers. Julich stated that he wishes to continue to be involved in the sport to some extent, and also that he will pay the consequences for his poor decisions.

Bobby did his self-confession at CyclingNews.[15] His open letter told that during the Tour de France of 1998 his fiancée (now wife) discovered his use from another rider's wife. She told him if it would reoccur, the relationship would be over. His name was also on the list of doping tests published by the French Senate on 24 July 2013 that were collected during the 1998 Tour de France and found suspicious for EPO when retested in 2004.[16]

Major results

9th Overall Vuelta a España
Held King of the Mountains Jersey for 10 Stages
1st Overall Route du Sud
1st Stage 2A & 2B
1st Overall Tour de l'Ain
1st Overall Critérium International
2nd Overall Dwars door Lausanne
2nd Overall Tour du Limousin
2nd Polynormande
3rd Overall Tour de France
5th Championnat de Zurich
2nd Trophée des Grimpeurs
2nd Overall Tour Méditerranéen
3rd Gran Premio di Lugano
18th Overall Tour de France
1st Stage 4 TTT
3rd LuK Challenge (with Alexander Vinokourov)
1st LuK Challenge (with Jens Voigt)
2nd Grand Prix Eddy Merckx (with Jens Voigt)
2nd Olympic Individual Time Trial
3rd Overall Paris–Nice
4th Overall Critérium International
4th Overall Tour of the Basque Country
1st Stage 6
5th Overall Eneco Tour
1st Overall Paris–Nice
1st Overall Critérium International
1st Stage 3
1st Overall Eneco Tour
1st Stage 7
1st LuK Challenge Chrono (with Jens Voigt)
1st Stage 4 TTT Tour Méditerranéen
4th Overall Tour de Georgia
5th Overall Tour of the Basque Country
1st Prologue Paris–Nice
1st Stage 5 TTT Giro d'Italia
1st Eindhoven Team Time Trial
3rd Overall Tour of California
1st Stage 2 TTT Deutschland Tour
1st Eindhoven Team Time Trial
2nd Overall Sachsen Tour


  1. "Bobby Julich to end his career at Team CSC Saxo Bank". Team CSC Saxo Bank. 2008-09-08. Archived from the original on July 16, 2011. Retrieved 2008-09-08.
  2. "Julich moves to Team Sky". SkySports. 2010-11-10.
  3. Shane Stokes (25 October 2012). "Bobby Julich leaves Team Sky after doping admission". Velo Nation. Velo Nation LLC. Retrieved 10 December 2012.
  4. Brown, Gregor (3 November 2014). "Sean Yates and Bobby Julich head to Tinkoff-Saxo for 2015". Cycling Weekly. Retrieved 4 November 2014.
  5. Hood, Andrew (31 August 2015). "Julich to leave coaching role at Tinkoff-Saxo". VeloNews. Retrieved 1 September 2015.
  6. Bobby Julich still calls Glenwood home, Post Independent, November 19, 2005
  7. Re-entrant Supraventricular Tachycardia (RSVT) Archived June 19, 2006, at the Wayback Machine., at
  8. America's new LeMond, CNN/SI, July 22, 1998
  9. 1 2 Cathy Mehl, Interview with Bobby Julich,, February 21, 2006
  10. 1 2 Shane Stokes, Bobby's guide to staying strong,, March 9, 2006
  11. Bobby Julich, I missed an opportunity of a lifetime, but I'll race again, ESPN, July 10, 2006
  14. "Julich leaves Team Sky". Team Sky Pro Cycling. October 25, 2012. Retrieved October 25, 2012.
  15. "Exclusive: Bobby Julich doping confession". CyclingNews. October 25, 2012. Retrieved October 25, 2012.
  16. "French Senate releases positive EPO cases from 1998 Tour de France".

External links

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