MSNBC and many other on line publications, picks up an AP piece about the Landis struggle against the PED use allegations and the possible two year ban that would await him if the upcoming May hearings with USADA go against him. Charles Odum writes from Stone Mountain,GA yesterday, a very busy day for Landis , that the former champion of the Tour of Georgia would rather be defending his title than be a spectator at the race:
"Obviously it wouldn't have been my choice,'' Landis said of his new role as spectator. "I was glad I was there regardless.''
Landis' troubles began soon after his Tour de France victory last year. His "B'' urine sample from his 17th-stage win in France was found to contain elevated testosterone to epitestosterone levels.
If the doping allegations are upheld, the 31-year-old Landis will be banned for two years and stripped of the Tour de France title. He agreed to sit out this year while contesting the charge.
On May 14, Landis will appear at an arbitration hearing in California where he again will deny doping allegations.
Landis said if he loses the arbitration hearing in May and has to serve the two-year suspension, he probably will never again compete in a major race.
"In the event that I lose, I can't say that I have much desire to serve a suspension and then race again later,'' he said. "We'll see.''
Asked to comment on last week's proclamation by Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme that OP tainted riders would be excluded from this year's Tour, Landis said:
"I'm certainly not naive enough to think I'm the only guy who is going through something that's not fair,'' Landis said. "I have no idea what their rationale is behind that other than they want it to look like they're doing something.And when asked what he hopes to accomplish with all of his recent appearances Landis replied:
"Again I don't know who did what there. Clearly something happened. It's unfortunate no matter what happens next because it's unlikely we'll ever find out what really happened.''
"We want people to see than an innocent athlete couldn't possibly defend himself. Whatever they think of me, they have to look at the system and agree with that.''
WMGT-TV (NBC) covers the same ground as the article above but in truncated fashion.
The Pensacola News Journal's Bill Vilona writes about the clinic opening and ride that Floyd Landis took part yesterday morning in the Pensacola, FLA area. Though gracious in this new role that he has assumed, Landis began this unexpected journey uncertainly:
If the original ruling stands -- that he used a performance-enhancing substance -- then his Tour de France title will be taken away. Landis, 31, also would face a competition ban up to four years, essentially ending his career as a professional tour cyclist.
Naturally, the issue follows him everywhere he goes.
"At first it was a bit overwhelming," he said. "But I learned how to deal with it. I don't mind it.
Girlierev has fallen behind, but finally did catch up and was at today's final circuit stage of the Tour of Georgia around Centennial Park in Atlanta, when she heard a familiar voice over the loud speaker. Pictures are promised to follow.
Racejunkie says Landis causes Global Warming too, lighting into the Zuri-Metzgete would-be organizers.
RoadMag Blog shows Part I, part II, and part III of a video Landis press conference at the Tour of Georgia.
A Side of GRITS went to the Tour of Georgia stage at Stone Mountain yesterday to see big George Hincapie ride, and they met a likeable Floyd Landis there as well. Pictured below is "GRITS" with her husband David, and Floyd proving that he either WAS all over the Southeast yesterday, or that there are two Floyds:
Graeme Wallace has a nice slide show from Brasstown Bald, with a few shots of Landis signing at the BHR booth.
At DPF, Hombre teases a forthcoming issue of Bicycling Magazine, saying it says:
worker for USADA LA lab quits to work for Floyd
lab results laid out in a very clear way indicating he should or would get off if tested in LA or Aussieland to start with