Sunday, July 13, 2008

Fallout XIV

The CyclingNews has Liquigas team reaction to Manuel Beltran's positive for EPO, which consists of shock, and also provides some reactions from other riders and former teammates.

ESPN/Bonnie Ford writes there seems to be no big shock about Beltran:

Beltran's "A" sample result was leaked to the French sports daily L'Equipe (could someone at least make the token gesture of scolding the Chatenay-Malabry lab for its indiscretions?), but even that often imperious publication didn't make a big deal of it.

In this morning's CyclingNews update rider rep Cedric Vasseur is upset with how the Beltran case has been tried in public before the results of a "B" sample have been processed:

"The only thing we know right now is that the A-sample is positive," Vasseur said. "It's not bad that Beltran left the Tour de France, but before we consider him guilty, we should await the analysis of the B-sample. If it is positive as well, then it's a pity for the guy. Then he will have to give an explanation."

Vasseur made an appeal to reinstate the normal procedures in case of a positive A-sample. "If an A-sample is positive, then you ask for a B-sample, and when the B is positive, and only then, you're guilty," Vasseur said. He referred to tennis player Martina Hingis who tested positive for using cocaine. "Even though we had problems with doping in the past, I think we should look at other sports to see how they're dealing. For instance Martina Hingis...we only learned that she was positive after the B-sample and that's normal."

Velonews notes the eye of suspicion turning onto Ricardo Riccò following two "eyebrow-raising" wins including a walkaway on the mountains today.

Birmingham News Columnist looks back at Armstrong through the lens of teammates and is feeling "robbed" -- but doesn't say of what.

The Wall Street Journal tut-tuts doping scandals in Cycling (citing Landis), looking at business and sponsorship effects. It an attempt to be even handed, it notes a good demographic despite the risks of sponsorship, and thinks the "clean" teams are a positive sign.

ST Louis Today has a good piece referencing Beltran, Armstrong and Landis, bemoaning the "guilty, guilty, guilty" drumbeat, the "let's connect the dots", and "let's rehash everything bad that ever happened in cycling" mentality of the media. Of Landis, he writes:
[D]espite the smackdown Landis received in his final appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sports, I’m still not convinced he’s guilty.

(I’m not convinced he’s innocent either, but I am convinced that the evidence was flawed enough as to call his guilt into question, tho CAS obviously and strongly disagreed in that assessment by dismissing all of Landis’ arguments/experts while accepting all of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agencies arguments/experts on every point.)


Rant thinks "Bobke" is entertaining, but he's no Pulitzer prize winning journalist. So when Mr. Roll is the only one reporting Triki Beltran's "confession" to EPO usage Rant has questions, like how 'bout we wait for the "B" sample testing? In the meantime we look forward to Dick Pound's pronouncements on Beltran with baited breath.

Energetich20 writes:
I followed the Floyd Landis disaster from stage 17 till now. I feel for the man. His life was put out on public display to be shamed prior to justice being brought in his case. CAS rubber stamped a decision which could not be changed either way. When L'equipe called Landis out, the man was doomed.

Pommi is just plain lazy and he can't even bring himself to watch the TdF due to doping scandals. But, Mt. Diablo still awaits.


wschart said...

Had Beltran simply withdrawn from the Tour, it would have been possible to keep the A results under wraps, ignoring for the moment L'Equipe. But with the police involved, as with Boonen, I don't see how this would be possible.

Unknown said...

It's a Catch 22 wrt the rules. The rider loses. He/She is outed either way, regardless of the tests.

Beyond that, accusation equals guilt, for all practical purposes, in the current system.