Right now, we're at the point where USADA's case is as strong as it is ever likely to look. Those rooting for USADA are now proclaiming the evidence is indisputable, corroborated, and that Landis is a punk, dirty doper.
USADA's theory as presented is that:
- The lab work meets WADA accreditation standards;
- Only a single metabolite > 3.0 is needed;
- There are multiple occurances of 5aA > 4.0;
- If the T/E reading of 11 is correct, it's outside the acceptable rage of the Landis longitudinal study back to 2002.
- It is believed by the doping underground that microdoses of T improve recovery;
- Microdoses of T often escape T/E screening detection.
- Microdoses of T often have single 5aA deltas out of whack, with others OK.
- Lemond claims Landis made an implied confession;
- Lemond claims he was intimidated from testifying by Landis' manager.
- The lab work is substandard in many ways.
- There are issues with the chain of custody
- There are issues with retention of data
- There are issues with metabolite identification through inadequate monitoring of diagnostic ions in the mass spectrometry.
- There are mysterious issues with manual and automatic peak identification and background subtraction.
- The T/E value or 11 is not reliable, and all other values reported are within limits.
- Landis denies the implied confession
- The person who made the call did so without authority, and is now the ex-Manager.
We have not heard a theory explaining an analytically significant meaning to the gaps in the log files.
We have not heard a theory explaining the analytic impact of internal standards being outside the expected quantitative range in samples, especially when there appears to be no requirement they be quantified.
Landis' first witness on Monday, Wolfram Meier-Augenstein, is an expert on errors in IRMS procedures, and the second, John Amory, is an expert in testosterone metabolization who has in the past testified for USADA.
These are the sorts of witnesses you'd expect to need to put some damage into the claims the lab work is correct.
We'll leave today with a post by "JR" over at DPF:
All is as it would be expected, very few trials go in a way where a 'directed verdict' is justifiable, the evidence and law so clear after the complaining party's case in chief, that a judge will declare the matter over before the defense is even presented.
I think that USADA has proven, that their lab work usually meets accreditation standards, their techs mostly do it close to right even if they have less grasp of why they do what they do than you might like to think about if it was your sample and your job on the line, that there was solid 'expert' opinion that the single metabolite holds up, nothing interfering in that peak that could bring it back below -3.8 or -3.0. I think the contamination issue has been a non-flyer so far, nothing to invoke the rule that the tests should not have gone further. Barring some evidence from Landis' case in chief that shows a single metabolite to not be caused by doping, its looking pretty good for USADA.
Other things that are a problem for LNDD and USADA in the future if they are not addressed, that the labs are supposed to have verification studies backing up their SOP's and LNDD doesn't seem to have that whereas most other labs do, and UCLA's verfication study for their SOP would not find the single metabolite to be a positive, though Catlin believes such a result is caused by doping, he can't prove it based on his research (ie, guessing that just often enough the single metabolite spike happens in a known clean sample though maybe not to -6). That LNDD is not documenting its packages the same way with the same details as many of the other labs, that the other labs generally have better chromatograms or better backup data that rules out coelutions and other interferences. To experts from outside the WADA family (Brenna on cross, Goldberger) what happens at LNDD wouldn't happen in their labs, qc would be tighter, cOc would be better, etc.
Hearing tomorrow starts at 8:00 AM, PT.