Thursday, May 24, 2007

Thursday Roundup

News
The LA Times Michael Hiltzik reports on the final day, before deliberations, of the Landis hearings at Pepperdine University. Amidst mud slinging by USADA, unsure science, and unexpected drama, the case ended with the closing arguments. USADA brought up the drama from last week surrounding Greg LeMond and tries to impugn Floyd Landis' character with what his former manager had done. Maurice Suh denied the "guilt by association" tactic and then stuck to the science of the case:

Time gaps in the analytical record, he argued, suggested that the lab had re-analyzed control samples repeatedly until it obtained results that showed its equipment was working properly.

"That's not quality control," he said. "It's fraud."


Technically only the hearing phase of the proceedings is over, the verdict still needs to be rendered, and either side can appeal the decision to the CAS.

The Age.com.AU notes that Floyd Landis' fate is now in the hands of the three member arbitration panel.

The VeloNews Jason Sumner also writes about the end of the nine day odyssey that was the Landis Hearings. Predictably USADA said that Landis was guilty, the facts of the case, the results of the testing, showed that. Team Landis hammered on the unreliability of the LNDD results and asserted that this hearing was about more than just one athlete's fate. No decision will be announced for at least six weeks, and either side can then appeal to the CAS. Regardless of the outcome Landis was successful in pointing out lab inconsistencies and the overriding power of the anti-drug establishment.



BikeBiz,in one of the more intriguing stories of the day, asks just who will wear the "golden fleece" in London at the beginning of the Tour de France this year? Floyd Landis' fate may not be decided by the beginning of the race, and heir apparent Oscar Pereiro is now unlikely to be given the yellow jersey either. Any guesses?

Bicycling posts an AFP story noting that now the wait for Floyd Landis begins.

The Carlisle Sentinel .com posts Eddie Pell's AP summary of the final day of the Landis hearings.In it is is observed that the world has likely not heard the last of Floyd Landis and his defense team.


The NY Times Lee Jenkins sums up yesterday's final testimony, cross examinations, and closing arguments. Landis lawyer Marice Suh pointed out in his summation:

“The only thing they want you to see are these results,” Suh said. “They never want you to look behind what supports them.”

USADA's lead lawyer Richard Young pointed out:


Young, was not quite as theatrical as Suh in his closing argument. Given a chance for rebuttal, Young said, “When the facts aren’t on your side, you accuse people.”

No decision is expected in the case for at least a month.


The Valley Advocate posts an editorial piece in which Floyd Landis is seen as a loser no matter what the the decision of the arbitration panel is.

CNN.com , in a slightly unrelated issue, reports that German superstar cyclist Eric Zabel admits to having doped during the 1990s.

ProCycling covers the last day of the Landis hearings,summing it up as a "win at all costs vs systematic failure" scenario, as it all supposedly came down to character and science, for both sides.

The CyclingNews also covered yesterday's closing arguments in the Landis case. Maurice Suh, lawyer for Floyd Landis, described the LNDD's lab work as "garbage in garbage out." No decision will be expected for at least a month.


Blogs
Rant thinks that Floyd Landis deserves better than what has been heaped on him in the past 10 months. Floyd's legacy now cannot be what it might have been because of the exploitive nature of the media looking to sell papers rather than be really straight about the whole truth. Heres hoping Floyd can go for a ride today and just forget for awhile.

The First 100 Miles wonders just how Floyd Landis will be able to wait for what might seem like an eternity for a decision from the arbitration panel that heard his case. Thanks for the kind words, you're very welcome.

Velogal says "shame on you USADA" for spending tax dollars unwisely and consistently taking the low road. Thanks for the "thanks".

Sabernomics was happy that the Landis hearing was public and feels it exposed the closeted system that is WADA/USADA. He is not sure if Landis can be cleared, and after what he saw he feels that Floyd will not be able to get back his reputation, or any of his endorsements. BTW, thanks for tuning in.

The Boulder Report's Joe Lindsey writes a very considered piece about his disillusionment with what Team Landis presented at the recently adjourned hearing, and with cyclists in general who scream they are innocent of doping charges. The Landis PR campaign is blasted for giving us all the impression of what they were planning on emphasizing at the hearing, most of which never came up. Lindsey also claims that most people think Floyd Landis is a liar, and that he would not want Floyd to spearhead any anti-doping reform. Lindsey concludes:

I think Landis is a good person at heart. But in more than a decade of covering cycling, I’ve seen this drama play out many times, always with the same ending. I was willing – hoping, even – that he would be able to provide some compelling reason to believe not just that the tests couldn’t prove he doped, but that Landis was innocent, a clean winner of the world’s greatest race. Unfortunately, nothing he presented at the trial brings me any closer to that position.


Doping wishes the anti-doping labs had their stuff together better so that cheating athletes couldn't stand up to them in court.

EnviornmentalChemistry.com's posts an editorial this morning which states the revelations made by the Landis defense about the LNDD were appalling:

I am not a cycling enthusiast, but my connection to drug testing and COC protocols has drawn me to the drug doping hearings of last year's Tour de France winner Floyd Landis. Given what has been exposed during the hearings over the past week and a half, if I were being tested now, by the WADA accredited French testing laboratory LNDD I might not be so confident my tests were being handled properly. I was absolutely horrified to read the testimony of the witnesses and what it has exposed about LNDD. I was especially appalled by what was exposed during the testimony of Dr. Simon Davis, who has a PhD in mass spectrometry and did much of the designing of the mass spectrometer in question (including writing parts of its procedural manual).



Steroid Nation very aptly puts the concluded Landis hearings into proper perspective this morning, and life such as it is goes on.

The Grayzone
thinks that it's now even tougher to be a cycling fan since the Floyd Landis hearings.

35 comments:

Ken S. said...

TBV,

Thanks for providing this forum and for providing the outstanding content day-in, day-out. You have allowed me to keep up with what should become a watershed event in the world of doping and the way it is handled.

Being a former neighbor of Floyd's for a brief period in his pre-Postal days, I have obviously always been biased toward him. But this entire arbitration process has totally renewed my faith in Floyd.

The sloppy testing process and its questionable results should never be justified in being used toward incriminating a person and taking away his livelihood.

I applaud Floyd and his team's decision to make this entire process public. With the help of this site, it gave all of us an opportunity to take a glimpse of what really goes on inside.

I will be eagerly awaiting the good news, whether it be one month or two months from now. And I will be even more eagerly awaiting the day I can see Floyd on his bike again tearing it up in the races.

Thanks again to all the TBV contributors. Please get some well deserved rest!

Ken S.

strbuk said...

Ken it was my pleasure to do the Roundups each day, though I do admit to a bit of burnout at this time. Glad you found it useful.

str

Anonymous said...

I find it a shame that the best coverage (here) of this trial is biased towards FL.
I don't think this trial changed any minds. those who thought FL was innocent feel they have proven their case, and those who came in to this feeling he is a drug cheat still think the same way.

Anonymous said...

First thank you all for the hard work I was so hopping this was going to resolve something and tell me if I should look up to floyd or hate him and am affraid it remains unanswered. I am missing something though and was wondering if anyone could help me out. I thought the slam dunk defense was the four "A" samples that were negative that later had the "B" samples run to prove the point that he was on dope and came back posative. That said either thier results are wrong 50% of the time (which is why the "A's" were neg and the same urine came back positive on the "B") or that the lab could create the results it wanted on a whim to substantiate thier claim and destroyed there own credibity in doing it. WHY DID THIS NEVER COME UP?????

Thanks again you guys rock and have earned a week of saddle time vacation.

Anonymous said...

thanks for effort!!!!

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

anon 5:23:

I think some minds were changed by some of the revelations surrounding the trial, and not for the better. If you came into this trial a die-hard Floyd fan, or if you came into it a die-hard USADA believer, then no, your mind didn't change.

Some of the people sitting on the fence changed their minds. That's clear by the comments here and elsewhere.

But the opinions that matter the most -- those of Brunet, Campbell and McLaren -- won't be rendered for some time to come. And if Landis wins, count on USADA, WADA, the UCI or all three to appeal to the CAS.

Which means the whole cycle will start all over again.

And then there's that little matter of what the AFLD in France intends to do.

While this chapter is coming to a close, the story is far from complete.

- Rant

Anonymous said...

Do you think 3-0 in favour of Landis? Any comments, I think the USDA was weak after Thursday, they fell behind day by day.

strbuk said...

Anon, thanks for thinking that the coverage here was the best to be found, but as to it being a shame that the site leans towards Floyd, it's in the disclaimer that TBV has on the right hand side of the page. I have posted a LOT of anti Floyd pieces in the past week, if this site were truly "in the tank" you would not have seen those posted. Speaking for myself I try very hard to post whatever is out there that is elucidating, amusing, or informative no matter how slanted THAT coverage might be. Thanks for reading.

str

Ken (EnvironmentalChemistry.com) said...

In regards to the pro-Floyd bias. Yes many of us including TBV had a pro-Floyd bias, but we still wanted to know the truth.

This isn't about hero worship it is about protecting the integrity of science and lab testing. There can be no doubt about it, based on the admissions of LNDD's technicians things are very, very wrong at LNDD and this is putting the livelihoods and reputations of many people in the sporting world and outside the sporting world at risk.

Testing labs MUST ensure that they maintain the most rigorous procedures and standards and ensure that their testers are very highly trained and qualified. With LNDD, however, it is painfully apparent that standards and procedures are willfully lax and training woefully inadequate.

In short, there is no way that LNDD has not ruined the lives and reputations of innocent people other than Floyd Landis.

Anonymous said...

Re: who will wear yellow at this year's TDF? Answer: likely no one. The guy who wins the prologue will get it but I doubt that ASO will give it to anyone to wear in the prologue even though they probably are contractually bound by Credit Lyonnais to have someone fly it out there - could be interesting. I think one year Lance might not have worn it saying that he preferred "to earn it".

Anonymous said...

Hiltzik's L.A. Times article was, overall, an objective and coherent article. Not a bad summary of the closing statements.

However, he failed to mention the WADA "Code of Silence" and rules forbidding release of exculpatory evidence to the defense/riders.

Illinoisfrank said...

First, thanks to everyone at TBV for the effort put forth. It was a fitting way to shine even more light on the first open USADA hearing. I will nominate you for a 2007 Bloggy award (if there is such a thing).

One thing that surprised me was learning that LNDD tests come up with an AAF three times more frequently than all other WADA labs. This can only mean that the population of athletes (mostly French?) that they test are three times more likely to dope or that there is something wrong with their equipment, personnel or procedures that leads to false positives in two of three AAFs. I believe that what we have seen in this hearing would lead one to believe that what happened to FL was the result of a false positive.

Anonymous said...

The way I look at this case is this: Take out the character debate (it's not relevant to the case) and look at the science being used ... it's flawed, the LNDD staff admitted it, the UCLA former director admitted it and these can't be use destroy the career of anyone.

Floyd was probably doping, that I don't doubt, but he also can't be convicted on bad science. It goes against everything that science stands for. I hate to say it, but he should get off, on a technicality ... it's up to you to decide how to think of Floyd ... as a doper or a very unlucky guy.

If I was Floyd's lawyer I would have ended my closing arguments to the arbitrators with "Would any of you be willing to accept a result from the LNDD, even with all the glaringly blatant mistakes, if this was your career on the line?" ... no one in their right mind could say yes!

Anonymous said...

Who wore the Yellow Jersey, if anyone, last year when the 2005 winner had retired? Probably a number of other times when the last year's winner wasn't riding. Of course, if a decision against Landis comes out before the start of the TdF, they could give it to Pierio (sp?), if his is riding this year. Or they could say (we've heard enough, regardless of what the arbs come up with, we're giving the 2006 title to OP". But there is risk in that, especially with OP's recent statements about refusing to submit DNA samples.

My guess is, unless there is a decision before the tour, no one wears the Yellow during the prologue.

Illinoisfrank said...

Anon 8:46,
I agree with your first paragraph. As for P2, the most you can say after this hearing is that we do not know if Floyd doped during the 2006 TdF (opinions on whether he doped before, during or after do not matter in this case). It should not be enough evidence to "convict". I also agree with your third paragraph. I wouldn't let LNDD test my lawn to tell me if it needs watering (although I thinkthe weeds are on steroids).

Illinoisfrank said...

Anon 8:16,
Waitaminit, waitaminit! You mean that there are rules forbidding WADA to release exculpatory evidence to the defense/riders? So Travis Tygart was lying when he said that this hearing is a search for the truth? I'm shocked, shocked, I tell you.

Jim T said...

For some time now, Dick Pound, Travis Tygart, and other ADA officials have been asking for more power to obtain information against athletes charged with doping offenses (subpoena power, search and seizure, etc.) either for their agencies or by working with law enforcement agencies who already have those powers.

I've been against that notion, since the ADAs haven't proven that they could respect due process. But now I think that this might be a good idea - but the ADAs need to know that this would come with a cost. If they want subpoena power and search and seizure, they can have it, but only if they agree to provide ALL the protections for the accused that other agencies with these powers must grant.

These protections include subpoena power for accused athletes, full rights of pre-trial discovery, the requirement to disclose exculpatory evidence to the athlete, and a code of ethics that does not prohibit anyone associated with WADA from providing testimony against WADA's interests.

This is the only way I'd agree to giving the ADAs more power. They can't have it both ways - if they want more power to help them clean up sports, they have to provide real protections for the accused. If we'd had some of that in place before the Floyd hearings, we might have avoided a lot of the mess. The LNDD techs would have been deposed before trial, LeMond would have been deposed before trial and his refusal to say anything about Armstrong would have been taken care of before hand. We wouldn't have had to talk about the color of Floyd's tie. And on and on ...

For the ADAs, asking for more power might be a case of "be careful what you wish for".

Anonymous said...

I love that Jason Summer at VeloNews included this in his article:

At the end of Young's closing statement, arbitrator Chris Campbell stopped him, saying, that he sees a code of ethics that tells anti-doping lab directors not to point out the errors of colleagues.

"Why not have the WADA code say that it is obligation to point out problems if they see them no matter what?" Campbell asked.

"It could say that," answered Young.

"Well I think it should," responded Campbell. "I think it is a real problem."


That's probably the most important comment of the case in regards to *other* athletes. There were two cases here, on for Floyd who I still want to believe is a winner but lost any stomach for his case, and one against LNDD and their utter incompetence. Even in the industry I'm in I point out to the engineers I work with that I don't want to tweak tests for the purpose of getting "better" results. I say it plainly when I think that is starting to happen, and it's generally unintentional, and they agree and we move on.

I am impressed by Campbell, and just as much by Brunet and I wasn't sure I would be. I really didn't get a feel for the third arbitrator, but I was given no reason not to respect him.

Thanks guys, you really threw your all into this. Judge Hue, I hope you stick around long enough to translate the verdict into non-legalese to make it easier to know what not to be upset about. :)

Anonymous said...

Campbell was chosen by Landis because he was expected to side with Landis. I think his question is valid, but I'm not convinced there's anything wrong with the WADA code. There's no obligation for the athlete's experts to point out errors in their procedures is there? This is an adverserial process. If the athlete believes there are problems with testing, he or she can try to prove it, as Landis tried to do. This isn't a government prosecution, and there are other standards in effect. If WADA had the right to search and seizure, for example, maybe there'd be other issues. But USADA / WADA are rather limited in trying to keep up with people on the cutting edge of doping science and with with enormous resources, trying to dope.

Jim T said...

Anon 10:58

Here's the problem: WADA's catchphrase (see their website) is "Play Fair". Plus USADA has talked about the search for the truth. So, if that is what the ADAs are interested in, what are they afraid of? Why not allow any and all experts to testify to what the believe to be true?

The panel wrote that Floyd's efforts to block testing of additional B samples was not consistent with a search for the truth. Is precluding any expert from testifying consistent with a "search for the truth"?

If WADA wants to continue that prohibition, then fine. Just please have them stop telling me about playing fair and searching for the truth.

bill hue said...

I somewhat disagree with anon 10:58
There are 12 active "athlete" arbitrators in the arbitrator pool, 12 active ADA arbitrators in the pool and 12 active Federation (Swimming, Cycling, Tennis, Badmitten etc) arbitraotrs. Campbell was chosen because he is n "athlete" arbitrator, not just because he was a name they figured would rule for Lndis. chris Campbell has, in fact, found AGAINST athlete more times than all other arbitrators combined (taking out just 2, including McLaren from the "all"). McLaren was selected by USADA as an ADA named arbitrator and Brunet was selected by process of McLaren and Campbell "striking" arbitrators throuigh a ranking system than could only include an ADA or Federation arbitrator and Brunet was the guy.

When Campbell spoke to young, he spoke on behalf of athletes, not THIS athlete in particular. He represents the interest og the athletes on the Panel, as McLaren represents the interests of the ADAs.

Anonymous said...

I'm guessing Landis liked Campbell based on his Tyler Hamilton dissent. I also gather from Bill Hue that the arbitrators are intended to be advocates to some extent, which is different from most arbitrations; that is, clearly the arbitrators are chosen because a party thinks the arbitrator will be favorable to them, but the arbitrators are really tasked with applying the facts to the law, and not advocating any particular position based on thier background. I would think it inappropriate for Campbell to speak to Young as an advocate on behalf of all athletes.

bill hue said...

Again, I have slight disagreement, this time with anon 11:50.
I don't think it was inappropriate for Campbell to ask questions, premised as they were, with the statement that the WADA Code expresses some aspect of fairness to athletes but that the WADA Code also demands by its "ethics" and Code requirements that no WADA employee testify on behalf of any athlete, concerning why the code doesn't seek the truth even if the truth would involve a WADA employee testifying for an athlete and wondering how the contrary could be "ethical". Campbell also said the code should be changed. That is no more advocacy than any judge who might ask how due process in systems concerned with such matters ocuured in a case or suggesting that a rule or law be changed so that due process or fairness might better occur or be better protected. We should not silence an arbitrator or judge by a suggestion that such positions constitute improper advocasy.Chris Campbell is highly ethical. I have seen no evidence that Brunet and mclaren are not ethical and i will post here and have, should others suggest to the contrary. i warn people, finally, should the decision come down against Landis, it will have occured because the system compelled the result, probably. I can only evaluate that when i read the decision.

Anonymous said...

Come 2008, there will be two riders who have the Right to wear the Yellow Jersey and defend it: 2006 Champion Floyd Landis, and the 2007 Champion yet to be determined.

The 2008 Tour de France will have 2 riders each defending the title Tour de France Champion...

Two Yellow Jersey Riders in 2008!!!!

the Dragon said...

Bill,

Since CAS appears inevitable, does the same pools system of Arbs choices apply, or are there actually (theoretically) independent Arbs chosen/assigned.

Dang, I wish I could ask my question more clearly.

Regards,

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:31, let's not get ahead of ourselves. You're setting yourself up for a heartache if Landis's team didn't prove to the satisfaction of the panel that the results can't accurately show he doped.

This is anon 10:22...

I though Campbell's question was important because it made the point on the public record. A lot of people would assume that the labs were trying to "find the truth" instead of "win", and any claims to the contrary are smoke and mirrors by proven cheaters.

If there's no one to police the organization the organization should police itself. Why even have any more labs if that's not the case? Shut down Rome, UCLA, etc., because LNDD is obviously more effective, they have so many more positives.

Anonymous said...

As usual, I am plying catch up. I will try to stick to a few points.

First, non-attorneys do not understand how hard it is to prove a negative - tht you did not do something. From the cop shows you know of alibis (I wasn't there and I can prove it) and forensic evidence (DNA/blood does ot match). Take the last example, a lab test that says it is you or that you doped, and figure out how you prove you did not. The only way is to attack the test result. When you find the lab was sloppy, poorly trained, operated the key insrument with metal carrying handles attached to its magnet, did not have a manual for the equipment, etc., etc., then you may prevail. In a real court this case would have been tossed long ago. Would a third party know that the defendant doped or not? No. All that would be known is that the testing was too unreliable to be used as proof. That is the best outcome that Landis supporters can hope for here.

Second, The testing of the B samples turned out to be a gift to Landis. THis was the only chance (I think) that Davis had to ovserve the LNDD lab equipment and personnel at work. Review his testimony and you will see just how important that was. The recent testing resulted in the Landis defense refocusing and refining its attack on the testing. Parts of the early Wicki defense did disappear, because the defense had found substantial evidence to support other elements.

Third. Under the rules the defendant has no power to get records, access to people who were involved in the testing, and the people who the prosecution thinks are the most knowledgeable (the staff of other WADA certified labs) are totally off limits and could lose their accreditation if they helped the defendant. In its first written ruling the panel indicated that it would appoint an independent expert which was to allay the defendant's concerns about fairness. Who was chosen? Botre, the head of the WADA accredited lab in Rome. It now appears that he is going to sit in on the panel's deliberations and be their resource on technical questions. Only a truly naive person would find him to be a truly independent expert and be comfortable with this. Maybe he will rise to the occassion, manybe not. But no one outside the deliberations will know.

Fourth. Ken(Environmental Chem) is absolutely correct. The labs doing this work need to meet standards that give confidence in their test results. This can be expressed in different ways: forensic, adequate to support FDA applications, sufficient to support peer reviewed research. It comes down to chain of custody and adequate record keeping to demonstrate what was done when and the result. This would mean that a test result should be the same whatever WADA lab conducts it. WADA wants everyone to believe that is the case, but the testimony points elsewhere. And their Code of Ethics says that their personnel cannot say otherwise. A defendant should have the right to receive a full and accurate account of the handling of his or her sample from the time it goes into the cup or vial and what happened to it and all the steps of testing leading to the reported results. If done properly, that record would be the end of most questions.

Fifth. Jim T. has hit it. I don't have a problem with more powerful enforcement tools, but I don't think that the tools he lists for the defendant are sufficient. There needs to be an authority which can hold the prosecutors accountable that has the power to enforce its decisions and to sanction misconduct by the parties or a witness. The focus has to be on finding the truth and not on finishing on time or giving equal time to both sides. The panel here did not know that it could have gone to a trial court judge and gotten a court order for Lemond to answer questions that were relevant to his credibility. Would it have takne time? Sure. Should it have been done? I think so, others may disagree.

Last. (honest, I did not anticipate saying this much). Cycling is an easy target. I don't think anyone will claim that it does not have an established history of doping. It was and is like boxing, baseball, and football - a way for a blue collar kid to rise to the top and ring the big dollar bell. The temptation to dope has to be strong. But remember that this doping system applies to almost every sport, certainly everyone that participates in the Olympics. If your kid is a swimmer, ski jumper, high jumper, cyclist, or triathlete, and they begin to excel and their dream it to go to the Olympics, then WAD will begin watching them at some point.

Whether or not Landis "wins" at this point, the people who have become educated about the problems with the system MUST press for change. Those who think Landis did dope should be on board - if he "gets off" it will be becasue of unforgiveably sloppy lab work by a system that would not or could not police itself. Those that believe that he did not dope - whatever the decision - should be on board because the testing protocol (CofC, record of testing and testing procedures) should have been essentially bullet proof. If they are correct and he was clean, then none of this would have occurred. If they were wrong, then the packet generated by the system would have been unimpeachable. Questions could be asked, but the answers would support the results.
pcrosby

bill hue said...

Dragon, don't kill the messenger but Dick Pound is a leading candidate to head up the CAS after he steps down from WADA.That Panel includes McLaren as well. It is not athlete leaning.
pcrosby-Excellent points!
Bill Hue

the Dragon said...

Thanks Bill,

I know you realize, that didn't make my day :-).

Regards,

Jim T said...

Dragon,

Don't despair just yet. A few years back, Pound was the leading candidate to replace IOC president Juan Antonio Samaranch. Then Samaranch asked Pound to head up the investigation into the 2002 Olympics bribery scandal. After that, Pound wasn't so popular with his IOC buddies and came in third in the IOC presidential voting.

Pound was so upset about losing the IOC vote that he resigned all his Olympic duties (took his ball and went home). The IOC asked him back and threw him a bone in the form of the WADA presidency.

Now Pound is asking to be head of CAS. Listen carefully to what Jacques Rogge, current president of the IOC is saying. Rogge touts Pound's leadership of WADA, but won't take it any further than that. Once again, Pound may have upset too many people to get what he wants. The "violating virgins" statement (and his many, many others) may come back to haunt him in the end. He'll just have to stay in Montreal and do tax law.

Anonymous said...

What's the take on whether it was good for Landis to have the public hearing? It brought out lab issues, but also, due largely but not only because of Will G., the public forum seems to have really hurt Landis' reputation, as I gather from the general press. I can't imagine Landis wanted a public hearing as a public service. I'm sure he thought it was best for him.
Also, what's the take now on his Wiki defense? He didn't live up to a lot of the hype. Has this hurt his reputation also? I do think that it was necessary to his fund raising though.

the Dragon said...

Jim T.

I'll hope you are correct.

Unfortunately my personality makes Jeckyl/Hyde seem very well adjusted.

Also interesting how context changes things.

Am a supporter of a Fan's owned, 7th level soccer team in SW London. Earlier this year we were docked 18 pts due to a clerical error on a transfer/registration form. Supporters were anticipating appeal to CAS if FA Appeal was unsuccessful. Luckily, penalty reduced to 3 pts.

Anyway, in that instance CAS was seen as possible savior, now, who knows.

Regards,

Anonymous said...

Bill Hue,

Assuming the general public thinks Landis doped, and the arbitrators are aware of this, how big of a factor do you think this will play in their decision? Do you think they will be concerned about looking like fools if they don't find against him? I would guess the evidence is such that they could really support a decision either way. Judges are only human, as I don't have to tell you, and I think can be affected by the outside world. I suppose my question is really, based on you experience at the hearing and your knowledge of the arbitrators, do you have any thoughts on how they might be affected by the public's general belief that Landis doped.

Anonymous said...

Michele Ferrari gave Prozac to Axel Merkx. (trial notes)

Prozac, Paxel, marijauna, beer and steroids often go together nicely.

When Floyd is banned for life---TBV and FFF fans can always consult a pro cyclist for anti-depression Mr Happy pills.

There is a doping product for every aspect of elite sports.

Ken (EnvironmentalChemistry.com) said...

Anonymous 7:16 PM,

I realize you probably won't realize, however just in case you do:

Seeing Floyd acquitted is only one objective. It would be nice, but none of us are truly counting on it happening.

The bigger desire is to affect change within WADA. There is a glaring lack of due process and fairness with current anti-doping efforts. Right now WADA is conducting nothing short of an inquisition and LNDD is totally unaccountable for their actions. There is no doubt that if the level of incompetence that has been exposed with LNDD (even simply relying on the testimony of the lab personnel themselves) had been exposed by an American drug testing lab in an American courtroom, the lab would have been shut down immediately by the authorities.

The problems with LNDD that have been exposed by these hearings are systemic and are in all likelihood putting the livelihoods and reputations of innocent people, both athletes and non-athletes (e.g. people who have to be drug tested as part of their normal jobs) at serious risk.

The WADA omerta that keeps labs silent and prevents them from testifying against other labs must be ended. Bad labs like LNDD must be stripped of their accreditation and shut down until the issues can be fixed, proper procedures put in place and their personnel properly trained.

The level of incompetence at LNDD that has been exposed as a result of these hearings brings into doubt the validity of ALL testing and research this lab has done for any purpose.