Thursday, May 17, 2007

French Press: Morning coffee and news from Paris, Thursday

Very slim pickings among the morning online papers. All major sources seem to be working from the same AFP report. All that interests any of them is that Greg LeMond will be a witness today. L'Equipe admits Christiane Ayotte from the Montreal lab will also be heard; Eurosport via TF1 agrees and adds that Eddy Merckx is on the Landis list of possible witnesses; Sport24 could care less about Christiane Ayotte, but gets over-enthusiastic and goes beyond what any of us knows to say that Eddy will testify.

Only Eurosport/TF1 actually says a word about Wednesday's hearing and a word is just about it: "As the day before, Wednesday was dedicated to hearing the testimony of Cynthia Mongongu, one of the LNDD technicians who took part in the analyses."

La Gazzetta dello Sport finally gets around to mentioning the hearings, publishing an abbreviated translation of AFP's report of Tuesday's hearing. Maybe there will be more later, but I wouldn't hold your breath. The European press has never gotten into these scientific arguments the way Americans following the case have.


cam said...

today is Ascension Day in France. everything is shut, even the newspapers aren't publishing (why bother? the kiosks are closed). so it will probably remain quiet.

tomorrow, however, they should go crazy with Lemond on the stand. they love him here, perhaps more than any other reason -- his hatred of Lance. sigh.

again, thank you and Bill for your spectacular coverage, colour, analysis, and analogies!

there will be tiny stories on the back pages of newspapers everywhere of a sudden influx of people throwing meatballs and other round objects out windows, toute le monde....

pem said...

Correct me if I'm wrong:

USADA was given the green light to perform any test at any lab for Landis' B samples. Anyone with logical thought can see the benefits of performing the tests at any lab other than LNDD because the Stage 17 test results are suspect.

So, not only did USADA perform the SAME tests at the SAME lab (LNDD), it was done by the SAME lab tech with the SAME instrument.

swimyouidiot said...

Pem, you got it. And don't forget, it was all in a search for the truth.

Anonymous said...

pem and swim,

One of the reasons the panel allowed the B samples to be tested was to confirm or deny the Landis claims that the LNDD performed faulty testing of Stage 17 urine samples.

What better way to test that assertion than to have the same lab test other urine samples, but the second time with Landis subject matter experts observing (some portion)? The second round of B sample testing is being used to test the truthfulness of many earlier assertions of the Landis team.

daniel m (a/k/a Rant) said...

Anon 6:18,

You may have hit on USADA's reasoning right there. But to further that one bit, shouldn't USADA have had an outside group analyze the data to verify whether LNDD's stated findings were correct, and what problems might have been uncovered in the testing?

I'd think they would want to know their evidence is solid, under that scenario. Splitting the samples and testing part at another lab, as Landis wanted, would also have gone a long way to that end.

pem said...

My blood is O+ and my wife’s is O-. When she was pregnant with our first child, she was scheduled to take an artificial D-antibody in case the fetus was + and its blood got into her blood. The artificial antibody would prevent her from making her own; otherwise her body would fight off any subsequent O+ babies.

Before getting the artificial antibody, her blood test showed she was already carrying the anti-bodies. This made no sense so the pediatrician had her blood retested at the same lab and it came up positive again. A hematologist was consulted and when he learned the retest was at the same lab, he immediately had another test done at a DIFFERENT lab. The results were negative. She was given the artificial antibodies, and we now have 3 O+ boys.

Further, my wife was a laboratory technologist and she insisted on having the first lab investigated. The investigating body reported to us that they could not find any problems with the lab – all their QC records were fine. (Yeah, right).

My experience – nothing is perfect.

When I worked in industry, we had to sample and test our discharges. Once in a while, I had results that made no sense. A grab sample showed something, but the continuous analyzer showed nothing. A repeat grab showed nothing. So, what was it? Contamination? Report it, but cannot account for it.

Want to get to the truth? Perhaps Landis should give a sample today, have it split and analyzed at multiple labs including LNDD. Seems like their recent tests are still showing positive results. Maybe it's something unique with Landis.

marc said...

What a great idea about everyone trying to replicate TbV's mass-meatball-spectroscopy work. I'll be keeping my eye out for those tell-tale greasy spatter marks on the pavement.