Sunday, December 30, 2007

Sunday Roundup

The Press-Telegram posts yet another of what seems an endless stack of year end missives highlighting everything that's wrong with sports. This one slots the requisite Floyd Landis snark in at #9:

9. Floyd Landis and the Tour de Farce. Baseball's problems look pretty tame when measured against the peloton at the Tour de France, where the cyclists apparently aren't even smart enough to make sure of their doping cycles. It's pretty bad when a stage winner gets busted a day after he dons the yellow jacket. Plus, who wears yellow, anyway? Landis, the 2006 Tour winner whose title was taken away because of drugs, gets a call for continuing to claim his innocence even as he loses appeal after appeal

Actually the argument that cycling makes baseball look good doesn't hold much water anymore, there's plenty of shame to go around.

The VeloNews posts an interview with USAC CEO Steve Johnson who says he is happy with the way USADA balances the rights of the individual within the testing and anti-doping procedures of the institution:

Under the existing structure of the World Anti-Doping Code, initial enforcement and adjudication is left to individual governing bodies. In the U.S., however, USAC has handed those duties off to USADA. Johnson said he's comfortable with that arrangement.

"It's the right way to do it," he said. "If you're really serious about cleaning up a sport - and we are - I think having an independent body charged with testing and adjudication is the right way to go. I am comfortable with that relationship and the way those issues are being handled. We have always tried to balance the rights of the individuals with the effort to catch cheaters. That's a difficult balance, but I am comfortable with the way USADA has handled that."

Lucky for Mr. Johnson that his life and livelihood have not directly depended on ,what at times appear to be, the whims of USADA.

Racejunkie discusses the retirement of Roberto Heras as only he can, and wonders about the new generation of "clean" riders and the WADA/UCI circus they are part of:

I object not to harsh antidoping punishments--which, even aside from the benefit of fostering integrity, hopefully encourage safe-supplement practices that protect the riders' health even better than say our hero Eufemiano Fuentes--but to their shockingly arbitrary application by the ringmasters over at UCI, WADA, the race organizations, and the sports federations. Even the Darwinian explanation of natural-selection-by-culling-of-the-reckless-and-stupid fails to comfort, as it seems ironic that one should be rewarded by being an even wilier bastard (worse, in the cases of those who could afford outside assistance, a richer wilier bastard) than one's more broke or merely luckless contemporary.

Erik's Cycling and Social Commentary posts a Forbes interview on YouTube with Jim Clash talking to Tom Danielson. Danielson diplomatically responds to some rather naive questions from Clash about Floyd Landis.


Unknown said...

Tom D. is not the most skilled at responding in an interview situation, but he seemed to handle himself well.

He represented himself and Slipstream well. He spoke positively about moving forward. He acknowledged there are things wrt anti-doping that he can't control and it might be best if he just covers his ears and tries not to hear about it.

He didn't sell out and give the easy (simplistic and popular "Dopers Suck") answer wrt Floyd. Props to Tom D. for stating, on the record, that he doesn't think Floyd doped and that it doesn't make sense for him to have.