A day off, and you'd think it was the end of the world! We warned y'all, and more days off are inevitable.
Landis is a "Lion out like a sacrificial lamb", at the Hall of Fame Network, in a long piece that skewers pretty much everybody who deserves grief. We'd say that author Scott Tinley "Gets It." Snips:
Landis' bizarre and extended romp through the exigency of his fall from grace, let alone the public court of opinion, says more about the general public's relationship with pharmaceutical agents than about the current system of checks and balances in high level sport doping.
Where Armstrong's fortified and feel-good parry to any claim of drug use was clear, clean and palatable, Landis' became the perfect opportunity for cycling to do its best Pontius Pilate, to admit that there were struggles, yes, but it was ridding itself of the evils of doping one simple, unprepared winner at a time. American cycling fans, at first incensed with WADA's accusations about our American heroes, gradually rolled over, tired of the whole thing. It went from sending checks to Landis' defense fund to questions of his guilt, to "what a shame."
No one can fault WADA and USADA for wanting to level a very conflicted playing field. But when you make a big deal about cleaning house, and in fact have only dusted the shelves, are you not as hypocritical as the riders who feign clear consciences and clean slates?
"The Panel has found no evidence at all to sustain any of these serious allegations," the decision read."Moreover, the Panel is surprised that such serious allegations should be pursued in the closing brief when it must have been clear at the end of the hearing that there was no evidential basis from expert testimony or otherwise to support them."
This kind of "I won, therefore my ideology is best" mentality has roots in Fascist thinking. There was ample testimony to suggest and perhaps indict not only the French drug testing labs but the entire system of sport doping governance. To suggest there was no support for any of Landis' claims is to say that the dishes in the sink may be dirty, but who's to say we can't just put more food on them and not worry about the germs?
UCI, the organizers of the Tour de France, the cycling media, public and every commercial team or sponsor that has invested a single Euro into cycling have Floyd Landis' blood on their hands. Whether he was falsely crucified or sent as the lone lamb to carry the message of anti-doping, he walks not alone.
But Floyd's choice to play David to WADA's Goliath has to be good for cycling in the long run. Even if he got his ass kicked for now, even if he got caught for the sins of countless others, the culture of drug use and drug testing will never again be the same in cycling. Everyone will be held to a higher standard. And those that play God need to be monitored closely.
TAS-CAS is pleased to announce the opening of the Olympic Instant Tribunal Office in Beijing, where athletes and their cases can be disposed of expediently.
CyclingNews passes an unconfirmed report that Aketza Pena has been cleared of nandrolone use by CAS, because of "irregularities" with the Athens lab. If true, that is an award we'll love to read, compare and contrast to the one given Landis.
Ricco confessed, sort of, after the boys at CONI had a talk with him. It's somewhere between a Millar and a Basso. NYT/Reuters, Velonews, CyclingWeekly. He wonders why only two of the ten tests he took came back positive. That ought to raise a lot of questions. And where is Piepoli's set of test results? Bicycle.NET has an imagined post-confession "interview."
Piepoli also had a nice talk with CONI, and is sticking by his story that he never doped, says Velonews. Also AFP/BikeRadar. Maybe a tactical denial awaiting test results that may never come.
Now that Landis definitely isn't doing Leadville because it is sanctioned, Lance seems to be going. Biking Bis.
Doping tests loaded against athletes, in MedIndia, rewriting the Christian Science Monitor article about Howard Jacobs.
Two EPO positives in Italy, Paolo Bossoni and Giovanni Carini. Tuttobiciweb.it.
Tour TV ratings down 20% on VS. Doping is conveniently blamed rather than absence of contending American stars. MediaLife.
Astana has re-signed Horner and Kloeden, from Velonews. Later, Racejunkie will be crying for Klodi's fate of being a second banana. Horner is still laughing about the support Evans had in the mountains by his former team.
Sssshock, a sport other than cycling (swimming) has a doping case, and double shock, it's going to be defended by Landis' attorney Harold [sic] Jacobs. Hmm, clenbuterol looks like something a swimmer would take. Nashville Cyclist.
Black Entertainment Blog thinks Cycling is becoming akin to Major League Baseball in PED scandal. "Something must be done. " He evolves to, "World class cycling is not like the MLB, it’s worse." Thanks for the advice.
We're not happy with "something" being done -- we'd rather it be the right thing, which is building a trustworthy and transparent anti-doping environment.