Monday, September 24, 2007

Monday Roundup

The CyclingNews posts that the policy making arm of WADA has banned several news substances for 2008:

New for 2008 will be "new classes of substances such as selective androgen receptor modulators (SARMs), a family of nonsteroidal molecules that has the same effect as anabolic steroids, and agents modifying myostatin functions including but not limited to myostatin inhibitors" the organisation announced.
The committee also approved the prohibition of intravenous infusions unless they are used to treat an acute medical condition.

reports that a number of underground streoid operations have been busted by a coordinated effort on the part of the DEA:

In a four-day series of daylight raids that ended Sunday, Drug Enforcement Administration agents shut down 26 underground steroid labs and made more than 50 arrests across the country, capping what agents are calling the largest performance-enhancing drug crackdown in U.S. history. The DEA also has identified 37 Chinese factories that purportedly supplied the raw materials for the labs, a DEA spokesman told ESPN.
The investigation also focused on message boards where advice is traded about obtaining raw materials, as well as on the Web sites that help the labs sell finished products to the public. Hundreds of thousands of e-mails were intercepted, according to Dan Simmons, a San Diego-based special agent for the DEA. Simmons said that no professional athletes have been implicated so far but that the e-mails are being compiled into a massive database of names and are being analyzed.

In a separate investigation in Albany, NY over two dozen doctors and pharmacists were busted for running illegal prescription mills for HGH revealing the huge extent to which it is being used by athletes.

ESPN's Page 2
has Jim Caple thinking that Floyd Landis got hosed when the arbitration panel from his hearing last May voted 2-1 against him:

Imagine your reputation, your career and the prize to which you devoted half your life are on trial. You present your side of the story and the prosecution presents theirs. When you've both finished, the judge nods and says he'll get back to you sometime in the future; he won't say when. A week passes. A month passes. Another month passes. Another two months pass. Finally, four agonizing months after your trial, the judge announces his decision.

Floyd Landis waited four months before receiving the bad news.
The fingerprint evidence against you, he says, was unreliable. And the lab analyzing the DNA evidence, he acknowledges, did shoddy work.
And then he delivers the verdict. You're still guilty.
That's pretty much how it worked for Floyd Landis, who just lost his arbitration case over his positive testosterone result in the 2006 Tour de France.

The St. Cloud Times posts an op-ed by John D Reep in which he expresses outrage and concern over the 2-1 verdict against Floyd Landis . He fears for the rights of athletes everywhere due to the arbitration panel's decision:

In our judicial system, Landis would have won in a romp. Much of USADA's case would have been inadmissible.
But in WADA world things are different. WADA sets the rules, acts as prosecutor, and appoints a best friend as judge. It's a fixed game. If you are accused you will lose.
Most people won't bother to read the 84-page arbitration award or the 23-page dissenting opinion. They'll assume it must be correct because someone who sounds kind of important wrote it, and it's awfully long.

After reading the decision, I'm convinced the mental gymnastics required to find Landis guilty are worthy of a gold medal. They ignore compelling scientific evidence and scores of lab errors.
The lab was sloppy and incompetent. Staffers didn't understand the equipment, violated procedures and standards repeatedly, failed to properly track chain of custody, reran tests, cherry-picked results and covered their ineptitude by overwriting the computer files.
It is any wonder they have had three times as many positive tests than the other 32 WADA labs, while actually doing fewer tests?

The Cleveland Plain Dealer's "Ask the Slouch" has more to complain about than a "jobbed" Floyd Landis does, he tore up his betting slip that had Oscar Pereiro winning the TdF.

PezCyclingNews provides a short report on the announcement that Oscar Pereiro was declared the 2006 TdF winner by the UCI.

The Province quotes Landis Armstrong on the Floyd Landis affair during yesterday's cancer fund raiser ride in BC:

"I'm not in that business," said Armstrong, adding he's focused on finding a cure for cancer now. "I only have the ability to focus on one thing at a time."

The Tucson Citizen publishes alleged "humor" by Argus Hamilton.

Bicycling's La Scene reports Oscar Pereiro seems to be getting little respect as the newly declared 2006 Tour de France winner.

The VeloNews Monday Mailbag has dedicated the entire column to responses about the Landis verdict. As one might expect some are outraged at the treatment Floyd Landis received by what one letter percieves as an unqualified panel of arbitrators. Some letters are outraged that anyone would still believe Floyd Landis did not dope as he is clearly a cheater, and so it goes.

Yahoo Eurosport posts a piece which comtains yesterday's non comments on the Landis case from Lance Armstrong, but it also includes a short statement on a possible press conference from a Landis representative:

Meanwhile Peal Piatt, a spokeswoman for Landis, said she doesn't expect the San Diego-based cyclist to hold a news conference to address the arbitration panel's decision to strip him of his title and slap him with a two-year ban for using synthetic testosterone.
"I don't know if we are going to have a (news conference)," Piatt said. "He's just taking it all in."

Biking Bis makes note of Lance Armstrong's non response to the Landis verdict.

CrystalZENmud read the Landis decision twice this weekend and came away with the opinion that the majority in the decision never fairly considered the minority opinion of arbitrator Christopher Campbell:

The best example of this, from my first, early analysis of a total of 103 relevant pages (of some 110 total), is found in the Campbell Dissent, and concerns the topic of 'cherry picking through separate sequences for ICRS evidence' (see Campbell, paras. 4 – 12).

In the majority's Decision, there is no mention of 'cherry picking' of evidence from the vital testing sequences that resulted in the Floyd decision of positive. Why not? Why ignore the most powerful statements made by the third member of this Arbitration panel?

In an update Zen tells us why the process Floyd Landis has found himself in for the past 14 months took so long, and what needs to be done to solve this problem.

NPA Think Tank is full of Dick Pound news, and wants to know what planet Dick Pound lives on where lab procedures do not matter if they ultimately find a positive test? NPA also wonders how in the world WADA doesn't hold itself to the same high standard that it holds athletes to? Good question. He ends his piece with what he considers to be good news.

Mom the Baby Nurse doesn't know what to think about the Landis case.

Carbolic Smoke Ball
has Floyd Landis morphing into the "Incredible Hulk" after learning of the arbitration decision that went against him. Nice Photoshop work.

The World According to Nick
wonders how the lab in the Landis case can get the initial testing wrong and then be trusted to do more complicated testing right. He also answers a friend's question asking whether the Tour de France can be won clean.

Ask Ryan
gets the "snark of the day" award , even though it's early, for not only insulting Floyd Landis but his family as well.

Steroid Nation
writes about the massive steroid bust by the DEA and in the Yahoo piece he cites it's mentioned that there may be a database of the steroid user's identities.

Baby Hatchetface
compiles a list of highly inappropriate Halloween costumes, one of which would involve Floyd Landis if you were clever, or slightly cruel.

Pommi posts Floyd Landis' statementto FFF supporters from earlier today.

NJ.Com posts a nice picture of Floyd Landis at a recent fund raising event in Bucks county for Anchor House.

The Long Run posts an eclectic blog entry tonight, and one of his comments is an expressed disappointment in the Landis hearing outcome. He is not surprised, but is sitll disappointed. Thanks for the plug BTW.


Bill said...

My wild speculation for today:

In the NEWS section above is an item that "The Cleveland Plain Dealer's "Ask the Slouch" has more to complain about than a "jobbed" Floyd Landis does, he tore up his betting slip that had Oscar Pereiro winning the TdF. That is sad, but it makes me wonder how many ASO, LNDD, WADA, USADA, folks still have theirs? Is that a far-fetched thought? Maybe, or maybe not - you be the judge if the possibility of some wagering on the side may have affected some folks' objectivity. It certainly would not be the first time that has happened in sports. How can we be sure that the planners & enforcers are clean in the absence of any oversight or accountability.