Saturday, May 26, 2007

Saturday Roundup

News
The Chicago Tribune's Philip Hersh notes the admission yesterday of Bijarne Riis that he doped to win the TdF in 1996. Hersh goes through a laundry list of cyclist admission, non-admissions and accusations from the pro peloton that looks like a cycling hall of fame and naturally includes current TdF winner Floyd Landis' recent hearings. Hersh wonders if cycling has even a shred of credibility left, something on the minds of many people no doubt.

The Washington Post carries an Ellen Goodman op-ed piece about extreme makeovers, athlete-style. She wonders about doping, hip replacements, lasik eye surgery, all of the non-natural ways that athletes try to make the field of play uneven.


Blogs
Spinopsys thinks that with the Riis admission yesterday of doping to win the TdF, Floyd Landis might as well keep the yellow jersey from last summer because eventually his conscience will catch up to him and we'll get the truth.

Music Sports and Adventure
thinks Riis makes Landis denials harder to take.

AOL FanHouse is irked Riis will get a pass because McQuaid wants to honor the 8 year "statute of limitations"

Triple Crankset thinks,with reference to Phil Hersh, that it's time for not only Floyd Landis, but also Lance Armstrong to just come clean.

Passion2Ride
is finally getting out and getting fit. After recovering from Floyd's Powercamp, and being marooned in front of the computer watching the Landis 'circus" it's time to get on the bike and just go.

Crowlie takes Young's character slams in closing at face value, and thinks Landis should have defended himself quietly.

Adventure Blog says, "Breaking News; Cyclists Dope!"

MASI Guy vents on Sports Illustrated's blind spots to doping in other sports

Kevin Pflum returns to the topic after last talking last summer, and thinks The Call demonstrated Landis has the ethics to dope.

Potholes and Roadapples
talks about the book tour touching down in Lancaster.

REmeidaKing
says test them all, every day, all year.

CyNicoleSN says take his title, already.

Steve and the Tank thinks Baseball has issues, but Cycling has a major problem.

Phantom Reflections is glad he bought a Klein instead of a Lemond.

Regal Vizla doesn't know any German or Spanish doctors, and has never met Landis.

For the record, though, I have no idea whether Floyd is innocent or not. I have to admit that what little I know of Dick Pound, the WADA, and this French testing lab, a lot of high school science experiments seem to have more integrity. While there so many bizarre details about his case, I have to admit that his lawyers' argument that why would Floyd take synthetic testosterone, a stimulant with no known short-term benefits, to win stage knowing that he would definitely be tested at the end of it, is pretty convincing. I hope I'm not gullible.

If you read the comments we delete before we get to them, we're gullible too - but "no short term effect" is not the defense we'd like to hang our hat on.

Numb Butt Becker
shares his feelings: "Fuck Floyd Landis"

Can't Holder Tongue
thought the only two options were (a) he cheated or (b) he was sabotaged. Dumb error hadn't previously entered her mind.

Spinnin' Wheel sees walls crumblin down in a lot of places. Still livid with Geoghegan, gives us a nice plug, and closes with:

In one of those bizarre twists of fate, I found this on the inside cap to a bottle of iced tea I had recently:

"Success without honor is an unseasoned dish; it will satisfy your hunger, but it won't taste good." - Joe Paterno

Some found Floyd's similar reasoning in his testimony to be trite, but it rang true to me. And I couldn't help but think of Joe Pa[terno]'s sentiments in relation to USADA, who relied so heavily on The Call in their closing statement. Is that really how they want to win this case, would that really taste good? We have seen in recent days that some don't seem to much mind the taste, and felt it was the only dish on the menu.

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

I just read the panels 5/15/07 rulings on Landis' motion in limine re the April testing. They shot down all of Landis' arguments, with Campbell dissenting. As I read it, they found Paul Scott, basically, to be not telling the truth, among other things. Maybe a minor thing, but now we have another Landis camp guy, like Will G., showing himself to be untrustworthy, at least in the view of the panel.

Anonymous said...

"Spinnin' Wheel" is written by a female named Julie, who also posts as Owlie. Remember -- spinnin' wheel...rounded like a girl would be, and well-spoke. She even quit posting as Owlie so people would quit quoting her as "he." Thanks! Otherwise, great work!

Camille

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cam said...

Anon 10:56,

listen to LeMond's testimony again. he NEVER said Floyd admitted to doping. he tried to get him to admit it, but Floyd never said he did. if he had, i promise you, we WOULD have heard it, loud and clear.

Chaz said...

Anon 10:56,

What you said cuts both ways. It is also hard to admit that the lab work of your fellow WADA officials is crap. It clearly was and they clearly avoided admitting to it.

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Anonymous said...

TBV Just for fun, sarcasm...not quite thomas moore's Modest Proposal...but If you guys allow it...fine...if not no worries. In the vein of NYvelocity.com:

Bjarne Riis confesses to having sex in the '96 Tour de France.

Meanwhile in-utero DNA testing for the 100 virgins that were miraculously impregnated on S17 of the '06 Tour prove negative for the winner. It's apparant that Floyd Landis wasn't the father. Whether or not he had adult relations during that event no one knows.

In a surprise decision all of the mothers for those 100 babies have chosen to get further dna testing done at a lab in Canada. Apparantly they are not confident that the LNDD can correctly identify the father/s of their children.

BY THE WAY!!

Lance Armstrong is the most sexually tested athlete in the world. The tests show one thing everyone knows; Lance Armstrong never had it and never has it. When questioned he added. "What is this S E X thing?"

Meanwhile Richard Virenque is the most sexually active athelete known to man. No one knows for sure but early reports from the lab in Canada suggest that Dr. Ayotte may have prelimanry results that link Virenque's DNA to some of the children in question.

The most disturbing news was Team Telekom. They have orgies.

In surprise maneuver. Team Director and Priest, Father Bill Stapleton told confessing Rolf Aldag: I forgive you.

Meanwhile Christian Prudhomme exasperated at the strange silence coming from WADA's Dick Pound...sputtered that Bjarne Riis is not worthy to have sex in France..and if he wasn't worthy in '96 then how can he be worthy as a Director in '07. To which Bjarne's wife replied, "Sweetie Pie Prudhomme don't worry....Poor Lil Bjarne's in the Dog house with his yellow jersey. If it's that important than you can come and get his jersey yourself."

Lastly Journalists in Spain have noted the name "Bubba" had popped up in the 6000 page Dossier recently provided to the UCI. The US Embassy in Spain is under investigation but rumors are linking that the former President Bill Clinton may have met with Dr. Fuentes as far back as '96.

When questioned directly by a spanish journalist the former president laughed and said. "No I did not have sexual relations with any members of the peloton....but then admitted to having a man-crush on Lance Armstrong and Rolf Aldag.

In a press docket released much later the President added: Blood Boosting does not enhance one's chances at getting elected but it does enhance other things ;)

Latest OP controversy is the name Perro Barca.....roughly translated it means Boat Dog. The assumption is that it really meant Tugboat. The wonderful Dog and companion of Tyler and his wife Haven. Apparantly Tugboat went to see Dr. Fuentes on several occasions. Both parties are not allowed to comment pending a mal-practice/wrongful death suit.

Which isn't very funny and of course that's the point.

So hopefully some good comes out of all of this so that WADA/UCI/ASO get reformed and find new religion along with Rolf, Bjarne, Zabel, Stapleton and the like.

peace out C.P.

Anonymous said...

I was looking at some of Chris Campbell's dissents in this case. I don't think he was right on the issue of the additional testing, for one thing. I also don't think he was right on Tyler Hamilton. But clearly he's going to find for Landis in this case.

Jim T said...

Anon 12:41

Remember that in the Hamilton case, Campbell dissented partly because those who developed the blood test used never could quantify the rate of false positives, among other things, so Campbell found the test scientificallly suspect.

According to the WADA code, athletes are not allowed to question the validity of the test itself, so I guess you're right, Campbell was not right according to the WADA code.

However, if what we're after is good science, Campbell was absolutely right.

Anonymous said...

I really can't beleive how gullible people are with respect to the enitre Lemond episode. USADA was going to make sure there was a spectacle, on way or the other. "The Call" is really irrelevant in that regard, except for teh fact that Will's collossal stupidity did USADA's job for them, and allowed them to put the stink on the Landis camp without getting any on themselves. The issue of Lemond's abuse was going to come out regardless, whether on direct, or on cross.

USADA knew this. Lemond knew this. They knew this because once the story of the "confession" became an issue in evidence, the entire story, including how Lemond elicited the "confession", was going to come out. You can't blackmail someone over something they are already willing to disclose

I don't see how anyone can really believe that Will (or by some unproven extension, Landis) thought that Lemond would be scared out of testifying to the murky, alleged "confession" by a simple phone call. It's already clear that USADA was going to imply that such "intimidation" had already gone on in the form of the earlier Landis internet posting. To the extent that the posting was "intimidation", it had no effect.

Don't make it any more complicated that it is. Will G was simply yanking Lemond's chain because he could and becasue Lemond was attempting to hurt Will's friend. I don't think anyone can show that there was an intent to keep Lemond testifying, or even an intent to make him change his testimony.

We keep giving way too many people way too much credit in this case. The French lab techs clearly aren't smart enough to have 'fixed' things intentionally. They may well be poorly trained and incompetant enough to have screwed up the analysis in a way that a false positive was created, or in a way that created enough error that even an actual positive result is of no use. Similarly, Will is dumb enough to have made this call to Lemond, in a painfully simple traceable method. Why does everyone now seem to think that there was some conspiracy by the Landis camp to suppress what was, to them, easily refuted and basically irrelevant testimony?

The fact of the matter is, this case has probably been about bumbling and incompetence on the part of the parties from the start. If Landis was doping all along, he messed up his doping regime badly in one instance, allowing him to be caught following Stage 17. If Landis was not doping, the bumbling and incompetence of the LNDD created this entire mess.

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Chaz said...

Anon 2:22,

Isn't it reasonable that he was angry that someone that didn't even know him was saying that he was a cheat? I agree that his reaction was not good, but wouldn't you be angry if someone was saying things about you that weren't true?

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Anonymous said...

Is it a coincidence that so many doping admissions are being made now - after the hearing and before the arbitration decision? Is there some dark force causing these athletes to 'fess up now?

tbv@trustbut.com said...

I'd say the dark force is the rundown of Puerto, and the pressures of the upcoming TdF.

I don't believe it's directly related to Landis, except that he seems doomed to get the worst breaks in timing of just about anything he comes across -- Mountain Biking, breaking his hip, moving to Phonak, winning with Phonak, having friends make dumb calls -- it it can happen bad, it seems like it'll happen to Floyd.

TBV

Anonymous said...

Floyd makes his own luck.

xflowers said...

The Greg LeMond testimony was a "red herring," by that I mean that it was designed to distract people's attention (press attention) away from the science and on to something they could understand: the drama of personal attacks. I say this because LeMond never had any evidence to offer in this case. And if Will G. had not done such an incredibly stupid thing, then LeMond would have had even less to say. The goal was to go after Floyd personally, and the prosecution did a great job of it since the press went for it like a dog goes for a bone. That tells you something about the state of today's journalism, but more importantly, it tells you about the prosecution's case. Apparently they didn't think they could win this one on the science, or they would have stuck to that, since this is what this case was supposed to be about. So they mounted a personal attack on Floyd instead. From my point of view, that weakened their case against Floyd Landis. I expect real evidence and not character assassination. Unfortunately, the upshot of this whole affair is really bad for the sport as well as for the anti-doping establishment. The press, who apparently evaluates these things far less critically than I do,
will likely conclude to trust no one.

Anonymous said...

Landis attacked USADA, WADA and the Lab without mercy for months before the hearing, but that seems to be ok. He also put his character into question by his testimony that he was such a pure person that he'd never cheat. Is it a surprise that the prosecution introduced evidence to show his character is something otherwise?

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Xflowers said...

Yes, Landis did attack WADA and the Lab. The lab screwed up his test results and leaked it to the press before he even knew what was going on. And then they did it again! This is a violation of the rules, isn't it? You would think there would have been some kind of investigation about how and why the lab findings kept ending up on the pages of L'Equipe, but apparently these rules don't matter much. And then there were Dick Pound's choice public comments. Face it. There was an all out effort to try and convict Landis in the public forum before there was any sort of arbitration hearing. That is not fair play, and that is what really has bothered me the most. Landis had to fight back, and that meant challenging those in public who had publicly maligned him. His only other option was to allow himself to be bulldozed. So what do the great enforcers of justice, ethics, and fair play do, they do a character assassination at his hearing. Putting Greg LeMond up there to prattle on made the prosecution look pathetic. Why not instead have arbitrations hearings that try to get at the truth? If there is going to be drug enforcement that really works, it has got to be effective, competent, impartial and open to correction when it is lacking in any of these areas. Otherwise we are left with only a shoddy system, administered by less than competent people and enforced by others who appear to have an axe to grind. The enforcers look as bad if not worse than the athletes they police.

Tim Jackson- Masi Guy said...

Just wanted to say thanks for giving me the link here- much appreciated.

I've pretty thoroughly ranted on doping as of late, so I won't go on further here.

Just wanted to say thanks and keep up the good work.