Thursday, June 12, 2008

Thursday Roundup

VeloNews reports the UCI has suspended the French Federation (FFC) in irk over sanctioning of the Tour. We imagine those at the FFC offices are trying to stifle a sniff. Or not.

Once again, the UCI is not taking actual action against riders or teams. Should it do so, it seems likely everyone would abandon the UCI ship.

ESPN posts an AP piece on "gene doping" and WADA's ongoing attempts to stay ahead of the game on the detection front:

WADA vice president Arne Ljungqvist said scientists working on gene therapy are being approached by sports figures interested in performance enhancement.

"We need to make sure that athletes know the dangers associated with these technologies and, for those who may choose to ignore them and cheat, that they will be caught," Ljungqvist said.

The CyclingNews reports that even though it now appears unlikely that Tom Boonen would go to the CAS to try and force the the ASO to include him in this year's Tour de France, Quick Step manager Patrick Lefevere has not completely taken that option off the table. In more news Alessandro Petacchi may take his case for a slight reduction in his suspension, which the UCI opposes, to the European Court of Human Rights, and there is more detail from the gene doping symposium:

One example of gene doping possibly already being carried out in pro cycling are hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) stabilizers. HIF activates the gene producing natural Erythropoietin (EPO) during hypoxic conditions - when the blood is low of oxygen. "Once the body has reached normal oxygen levels again, HIF is decomposed. But HIF stabilizers make the factor continue its job: stimulate the production of natural EPO even when there is no need for it anymore," explained Patrick Diel, gene doping expert at the Centre for Preventive Doping Research in Cologne, Germany, to

HIF stabilizers would be easier to use than artificial EPO injections, as they come as a pill. "With this pill, hematocrit increases - without the use of artificial EPO. As the EPO is produced naturally, it cannot be detected using the current tests," he continued, adding that a 'treatment' would be dangerous. "Clinical studies carried out last year had to be abandoned prematurely, as the patients showed unacceptable side-effects. Still, other pharmaceutical companies are working on similar concepts. Now that the drug has already been tested on humans, we don't know if it is already circulating in the sports world."

The Boulder Report, inspired by Tom Boonen's surprisingly adequate apology, writes a few unlikely apologies of its own.

Bicycle.NET, to which we have linked frequently, has resolved some hacker problems and wants the world to know that it now has a clean bill of health. So here's some link love and check out "how not to ride a corner"

Press Releases
Don Catlin's new gig comes into focus with a release by Anti-Doping Sciences Institute, Inc. ("ADSI") and the Agency for Sports Ethics, LLC ("ASE"), which are now promising to work together. Catlin is the Chief Science officer of ADSI, whose CEO is coiincidentally named Oliver Catlin. ASE owns ACE, which is running the profile programs for Slipstream, Highroad, and the BMC cycling team.

NUE news
The Lumberjack 100, in Michigan's Manistee National Forest, will be run this coming weekend. As far as we know Floyd Landis is still planning to take part. Here's hoping his luck is better than it was at the Mohican100.


whareagle said...

("Eightzero") said...

OK, here comes the train into the open switch.

Imagine a rider "tests positive" at the Coup de France this year. This could come from just about any source, including the French Tabloid L'Equipe. But given that the "testing" in this year's race is to be conducted by the now disqualified FFC, how will UCI recognize those "results?" What right, under UCI's rules, does UCI have to accpet "results" of a non-affiliated organization?

So, L'Equipe reports a rider's A sample is positive at LNDD. ASO tosses him (and his team?) from the race, and FFC sends a bill for $155k IAW their new "contract." Rider and team then request counter analysis of the "B" and it (amazingly!) is confirmed, but the analysis was done at the same lab, on the same machine, by the same person, in direct violation of the "Landaluze Rule." Frelat uses "common sense and experience" to confirm this.

Assume UCI knows and agrees this procedure violates WADA protocols, and knows this is a loser at the CAS. Will the rider be able to particuipate in any future UCI events (WC and Olympics?)

jrdbutcher said...

I need some time to ponder most of your questions, but FFC/LNDD will not be encumbered by such trivialities as a confirming B-Sample at the 2008 TdF.

Ali said...

It would be good to see a convincing ride by Floyd in the Lumberjack.

I can tell you now, if he doesn't perform half decent, I'm flying out for the Wilderness 101 so I can kick his ass. How many chances does one get in a lifetime to beat a former TdF winner ? Plus, that mountain biking thing appears to be just a succession of hill climbs ... perfect for the cyclist who can't ride a bike on the flat (yeah, the training wheels help but do attract some hurtful remarks) :-(


("Eightzero") said...

Ali,'d have your chance at the Wilderness 101 to beat an actual TdF winner.

strbuk said...

OK Ali pick me up on the way to PA and we can both kick his ass, I can't ride "flats" either :-)