Saturday, February 17, 2007

Saturday Roundup

The Mercury News posts a complex look into Floyd Landis's struggle over the past six months to reclaim his reputaion and career. Though there are some inaccuracies in the piece, it makes the point that cycling is at a crossroads, and the Landis fight is for more than just one man's reputation:

"If this mission is going to succeed and things are going to change for the better I need to focus on this with the same intensity and determination as the Tour de France," Landis said in an interview with the San Jose Mercury News. "That is the only choice. If this year is spent fixing this problem, I won't see it as a loss."

The Guardian (UK) talks about various crises in cycling including Landis, then ends up talking to Bradley Wiggins. He'll be writing for the paper this year, and what he says here is less confrontational than what was reported in the tabloid press the other week.

David Albee of the Marin Independent Journal writes that Floyd Landis is "cashing in" on last year's success with the FFF and the publication of "Positively False". In an article suffering from mutiple personality disorder, the author can't seem to decide which tone he means to present. It's seemingly fair one moment and truly snarky the next.

The New York Times (in an article with limited Landis news) writes that EPO was not tested for in last year's Tour of California. The tour lead sponsor Amgen produces a form of EPO for cancer treatment and a spokesperson expressed outrage that this "oversight" occurred. The SanLuisObispo Tribune carries the same piece. It looks like oversight, not conspiracy, or even cost constrained:

Roth said that the organizers of the race would bear the cost of the extra test, about $400 for each urine sample, or $1,600 for each of the race’s eight days.

That roughly doubles the cost of drug testing for the event,

Meaning it costs all of $25,600 to do all the tests for the race, which is not a high cost to insure integrity of the event. As we've said before, if organizers (and the UCI) were really serious, they'd run enough tests that everyone in a stage race was likely to have gotten tested at least once. For a three week tour, it means about 10 randoms per stage. For a one week race, it would be about 25 or 30.

Sportingo wants to warn Lance Armstrong and Floyd Landis that "in-house" drug testing has been done before, and it's a false negtive strategy. Why Armstrong and Landis are being warned is not entirely clear, but may have something to do with the confused cyclingpost story of a few days ago. Anyway, this article does present a case against in-house testing, and is useful to read from that angle alone, because there will be others who take the same general line.

North County (San Diego) Times pumps Zabriskie's ToC chances, mentioning hometown boy Landis as well. TBV is taking Z-man for tomorrow's Prologue.

Daily Peloton helps hype tomorrow's FFF event in SF.

View from a Man's World takes a stab at humor noting that the Landis team has been suspended from this Sunday's Daytona 500 for using performance enhancing drugs in the gas. This would have been in the running for "snark of the day" if not for the alleged claim at humor right up front.

Steroid Nation picks up the EPO testing at the ToC and repeats the pitch for Amgen picking up title sponsorship of Tailwind (ex-Postal, soon-to-be ex-Discovery).

Rant hears the EPO at Toc story, and also goes to town with it.

Science Pundit finds a cartoon about "Caroids" in NASCAR, and snarks on Landis.

Snark O' the Day
Chris at the SFist previews the ToC prologue, and can't help himself from making snarky comments about Landis and Basso. We tried to leave a comment for refutation, but the site is broken.

Over at DPF, the discussion of "Positively False" continues , and has veered from the topic. But with an interesing contribution from Frankie Andreu's wife (ElizaB) it's worth reading.

Thought for the Day

"Why does Sea World have a seafood restaurant?
I'm halfway through my fish burger and I realize, Oh
my God, I could be eating a slow learner." -unknown-


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