Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Tuesday Roundup

Part II of the Amber Landis Interview at Daily Peloton.

CyclingNews hears from Peirero on Puerto in El Pais: "We must fight against the dopers within the laws, together and without haste", says Oscar, concluding, "The leaks to the mass media have done damage". Samuel Sanchez adds, "All that has happened invites us to reflect on whether the controls that we have are totally trustworthy. There are many false positives, many errors,"

Mort Zuckerman of US News talks about "Our Cheating Hearts", uses "alleged" correctly.

San Diego Union Tribune columnist gives a boo to a certain witch,
and MSNBC's Celizic goes snarky on the Halloween costume, suggesting you go knock on Landis's door as Mr. Pound, bearing a sample cup. That'll sure go over big. [both courtesy thinnmann.]

Reading (PA) Eagle says Landis' defense claims "ring hollow"

Lij Discovers the truth about a Phonak Jersey on Halloween: "Are you Lance Armstrong?"

Renewable Energy website compares usage to the KWH produced by Landis on the Morzine stage. Is that unit now a "Floyd?"

Stop Fooling Around has pictures of what happened in Madison after Landis left the fund-raiser, and some other pictures from earlier in a different post. The PG on the left looks like the Mrs, so no trouble there.

Feetwasher gets snarky about people not taking responsibility.

TourDeFranceLogue comments on the route unveiling.

Banshee is starting to sound mostly coherent, and thinks most folks don't care whether Floyd has heavy C13 atoms. He's been climbing up from his original mention here. Watch it, Dirt, or you might get taken seriously.

An old post from Steve-Z
(Sep 12) about the ADRB filing I'd missed. He's in the 'everybody dopes' crowd. But, he plugs TBV, so I can't resist. Obsessed? Hah!

At DPF, Duckstrap returns to the T/E confirmation test around post #365;

Floyd names a WHO in post #117 of this thread. He thinks the ADA side is into
winning!, not finding the truth, and suggests he needs money, but isn't outright asking for it:

All of this discussion needs a little more context from someone inside in order to be more productive. Think, for example, how often in sports or business or politics, the guys with the most money win. Money translates directly to power in the form of better experts on whatever field you happen to be playing. Now, if the situation were as Chris implies, we wouldn't be talking about the winning side but rather about truth prevailing and nobody would be considered winner or loser.

Unfortunately, several problems are preventing that from becoming reality.

First of all science is not "foolproof" in the pure form and even less so in the context of vaguely written standards (clearly so as to provide opportunity to hide mistakes and prosecute without proving what happened) based on studies kept secret from the accused.

The second, and more important problem comes from some philosophical misunderstanding within the antidoping agencies with respect to what they have set out to accomplish. They will not specificaly state the issue at hand, but the most obvious incriminating statement comes from Travis Tygart of USADA after publication of all of the provided documents (more to demonstrate to the world the refusal to provide sufficient documentation) when he stated that USADA had never lost a case in arbitration.

The problem lies in the perception that he is competing with the athletes just like in a race, he wants to win. I believe that in the history of USADA more than one innocent athlete has been prosecuted and therefore his statement, while it may seem true to him, is a lie if you consider the mission. When an innocent athlete is prosecuted and Tygart "wins" the mission loses (I know it is inevitable that some innocent people get punished, but for the sake of discussion, hear me out) and therefore Tygart also loses because he doesn't understand the purpose of the (government funded) agency which he represents.

The point is, of course I need lots of money, because I am up against an opponent with more money than I, and with the objective to win, not to find the truth. Had Travis Tygart actualy consulted with his "expert" when we asked for the case to be dismissed, he would have learned that it was in the interest of truth to drop the case, but now he is committed to winning whatever the cost to truth.

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Monday, October 30, 2006

Welcome strbuk!

TBV welcomes a new member of the staff, STRBUK, who joins us from the East Coast and is going to help collect Roundup items. We haven't worked out how this is going to be done exactly, but we'll hope for the best. Don't be surprised if posts come and go while we figure out details.

STRBUK has been our best email informant, often catching things we'd missed, so we welcome the help with open arms. I have not found out if the handle is a reference to the coffee or the Colonial Viper pilot, but perhaps we'll learn.



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Monday Roundup

CyclingPost gives their monthly roundup; Landis still the #1 topic.

VeloNews reviews the course, says Landis would be the favorite if he is able to return.

Letters to VeloNews:

I'm in the U.S. Military, which has been conducting drug testing for years, and I'm amazed at the possibility that Floyd Landis' allegations could have merit- such sloppy record-keeping is a total disgrace if it's true. Although the truth appears far from certain in the Landis case, the ambiguity on both sides has caused this long-time ardent fan to falter in my support of what was for years quite literally only one of two sporting events I'd watch without fail, if not the only things I even watched on television all year.
CyclingNews reports on Phonak goodbyes; here's a link to the team site.


At DPF, Floyd gives a little lesson on economics. (Queue a replay of "There is Power in a Union"), also a little earlier wondering at what point the underpaid riders might start questioning their commitment to the world as it now is:
I have the support and sponsors to promote a one day race in June or July of next year for which the prize money will be 1,000,000 dollars for first and another mil split for the next few places. What are your ideas on that. Do you think it is a good start in providing some competition to the grand tours so that they improve things or do you have a reason why it is self serving? Keep in mind that for winning the vuelta you get 30,000 euros, and for winning the tour you receive 400,000 euros.
Later in the afternoon, in post #58, Will drops what he believes to be a bomb, in the 2006 Prohibited list, as adopted on Jan 1 2006, wherein the key passage reads:
a Sample will be deemed to contain such Prohibited Substance where the concentration of such Prohibited Substance or its metabolites or markers and/or any other relevant ratio(s) in the Athlete’s Sample so deviates from the range of values normally found in humans that it is unlikely to be consistent with normal endogenous production.
(Also, original from WADA which says the same thing.)

Which gets rid of the parentheses around the trailing 's' in metabolites, making it vastly more likely to mean the 'all' reading rather than the 'any' reading as used by LNDD. Still, there is confusion:
the above paragraph is about concentrations of metabolites, not about IRMS measurements of metabolites. To the extent that it might apply to IRMS, it says "and/or any other relevant ratio(s) in the Athlete’s Sample". In that case, any is clearly not all. If that applies, of course.

I've read this thing a couple of times, and, honestly, I'm not sure why Will posted it.
and then back:
This is not TD2004EAAS, however, it is a later WADA document which clearly spells out the determination of whether a prohibitied substance is in a sample.
This gives us more to chew on for a while. For discussion, the explanatory note of the 2006 edition says at 1.b says,
The explanatory note in Section 1b: "Endogenous AAS" have been reworded and expanded in order to further clarify the procedures and/or tests to follow whan an Advers Analytical Finding is reported for this category of anabolic androgenic steroids or for a T/E ratio.
But it is not clear if this clarfication is intended to encompass an IRMS determination of exogenous origin.

Dugard says Landis will be in NYC later this week doing media, and may run into Lance.

Bicycling's Boulder Report summarizes recent DPF discussions with Landis, especially the financial ones, and his remarks about the UCI. There's the heavy implication that Boulder thinks Floyd has drunk his own Kool-Aid.

Boulder also plugs the Wiki and TBV, so we're happy about that at least, especially saying we're only slightly biased as a result of getting most information from Landis and Jacobs. It would be nice if any of the Lab Directors or Doping Agencies would return my inquiries that are not specific to the Landis case. There is information they ought to be willing to share with the public and perhaps we'd be informed in a more balanced way. (For example, this fruitless exchange with USADA).

OuchProCyling has more on the Canine Companions for Independance appearance.

CompetitorRadio talks to Michael Ashendon, involved in the Hamilton case and engaged in an exchange of barbs with Howard Jacobs over a previous show. An emailer listened, and says that
  • Ashendon complains that the ADA side can't speak out now and that is unfair;
  • He doesn't talk directly about Landis, but says smoke implies fire.
  • He thinks "metabolite(s)" is perfectly clear.
  • Elite cyclists have to be doping.
  • Athletes should submit to DNA testing to resolve Puerto.
Which sounds pretty much like the standard ADA position -- all cyclists are dirty, anything the ADA side does is fair, indisputable, and no errors can be made.


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Sunday, October 29, 2006

Sunday Roundup

At RBR, well known troll 'dupedcyclist' returns with more molotov cocktails. He receives the usual short shrift.

At DPF, Floyd asks some questions that seem to be revealing more of his hand:

I'd like to propose a few questions:

Under what category would it fall if you proved that with a certain labs interperatation the false positive rate increased from 1 in 3 millinon, to 4 in 1 hundred? Would that be arguing the science or the interperatation of the provided science?

How would you see the "metabolites" issue if you knew that the 2004 WADA document said metabolite[s], and the 2006 document said metabolites? Wouldn't it seem that the issue had been considered and the conclusion reached that it was "all"? Also, what would you say if you learned that some labs, who have done the research and understand the metabolic pathways, required all of the metabolites to be above a different cutoff than WADA?

One last hypothetical. What would be your oppinion if you looked through all of the research and could not find an example, wheather it be in the control group or other, where the deltas were that far apart in any given pair of metabolites (leaving open the possibility that if the two were near the cutoff that it is possible for one to be above and one to be below within margin of error)? Would you then decide that the test is unexplainable and therefore inconclusive or would you accept that some rule had been broken even though it is not possible to know what had transpired?
An interesting set of questions, indeed.

PJ likens the Quarterly Report to cramming for finals. The idea that reading it will help you chat up members of the appropriate sex at the Halloween Party seems far-fetched.
(TBV also advises against wearing an Amish straw hat with your Phonak jersey to go as Floyd Landis.)

Rant wonders if the mirror effect will lead someone to seven years bad luck.

Racejunkie swipes at Floyd and Phonak for what's happened to other members of the team.

DigitalAgency chimes in positively on the Net defense strategy.


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TBV Quarterly Report

It's another 29th of the month for TBV, and being the third, it is time for the Quarterly Report. Let's hope there will only be one more of these and we can all get on with our lives. [more]
Previous reports were at the one and two month milestones of TBV.

The next formal steps are

  1. Selecting the arbitrators.
  2. Scheduling the hearing.
  3. Identifying requests for materials.
  4. Resolving pre-hearing requests with the arbitrators
  5. Exchanging briefs and witness lists at least 5 days before the hearing.
  6. Conducting the hearing.
  7. Receiving a decision.
Then, the losing party may appeal to CAS, and we'd repeat 1-7.

We have heard that Pepperdine Law School has been proposed and tentatively accepted as a location, with exact scheduling to be determined, probably sometime in January. If it happens, TBV is there.

Some Rumours

We have also heard the following conflicting and unverified reports:
  • USADA has accepted the open hearing and Pepperdine
  • USADA is balking, wondering what "public" means.
  • USADA wants to go directly to CAS, skipping a public hearing.
Notable Events

Since the last monthly report, we have had the following significant events
  • Landis is proceeding with post-op physical therapy, regularly riding stationary bike, has thrown away his crutches and started gingerly on a road bike.
  • Three sets of (one, two, three) "Ferret" documents and their interpretation and reconstruction.
  • Landis announces the "Wikipedia Defense", but says not all of his cards will be revealed.
  • Release of the full Lab Documentation Package, ADRB Filing, and the Baker PowerPoint.
  • Several week appearance of Landis on the Daily Peloton Forums.
  • DPF has emerged as the premier site for serious technical discussion of the case.
  • A Wiki has been created to organize the data and interpretations.
  • Despite skepticism on DPF, Landis has been sounding downright cocky, telling an audience in Madison, WI., that he wants to bring down the UCI. This suggests he thinks he is holding cards are pretty darned good.
  • The route for the 2007 Tour was announced. The introductory video didn't duck the doping issues, but was seen by some as being excessively critical and disrespectful of Landis.
  • The UCI and the GT Organizations continue to snipe at each other. Too many instances to link.
  • Operation Puerto has fizzled, with all riders apparently cleared, and no one charged with anything. This has frustrated McQuaid to no end. Basso out at CSC, Ullrich out at T-Mobile, both looking for teams. Astana doesn't have a ProTour license, and maybe not contracts for it's leading riders. Both are held by Saiz, implicated in Puerto, but not charged.
  • We learn that Mr. Pound of WADA has a term that is expiring next year, and that the Euro candidate to replace him will be Lamour of France.
Proffered Defense

We need to keep in mind that Landis has said repeatedly that he has not revealed all of the defenses he will be offering, so we should be careful not to dismiss his case based only on the evaluation of what is currently known. The two likely presumptions are that he is holding back what he thinks is dynamite that will pretty conclusively make his case, or that he has nothing, and is trying to sow confusion.

What has been made public of the defense so far is intriguing, but not yet convincing for many people. As broken apart by the Wiki, based on discussions at DPF, the following Issues have so far been identified and considered:
  1. TE confirmation - may have been done wrong, looks plausible to discredit.
  2. CIR Positivity criteria - may be done differently by different labs; by loosest plausible standards he would be positive. This hinges on the interpretation of the snippet, "metabolite(s)" being either "all of the tested metabolites" or "any of the tested metabolites". Intelligent people can argue this till they are blue in the face.
  3. Contamination - possible defense at first glance, sentiment is now that it was probably not contaminated, but this may get revisited.
  4. Bogus delta 13C - unresolved, with suspicion that cortisone taken under TUE may have conflicted with that used as a reference compound.
  5. Natural Variability - interesting, but may not be helpful for procedural reasons. The various studies supporting the test suggest he may be within one range of normal that doesn't happen to be the range used to set the criteria for the letter of the test. Should the arbitrators be literal rather than concerned about the spirit and correctness of the regulation, this is of no help to the defense.
  6. Cortisone - has been dismissed in terms of its affect on 13C in testosterone metabolites, but its excreted effect on comparisons made with it as a reference compound are not yet fully explored.
  7. Most reliable metabolite - this seemingly good argument has been discounted, but it subservient to the "positivity criteria" discussion. If it must be "all", then it matters; if "any", then it doesn't.
  8. Doping Scenario - no one has come up with a doping plan that makes any sense in the context of the race situation. In particular, a theory that he got caught with a transfusion of tainted blood from an earlier program have been fairly thoroughly dismissed because of the mechanics of blood doping.
  9. Paperwork - the paperwork botches on sample numbers noticed in the Filing seem very important to commenter's who work in or near labs, and essentially irrelevant to lay people. Unless there is something else to suggest a sample mix up, it appears to be merely embarrassing.
  10. Beer. There is continued puzzlement what effect alcohol may have on CIR ratios, especially in an elite athletes who bonked and then drank while their body was trying desperately to replenish itself. The theory is considered speculative, inconclusive, and unlikely to have any effect on the case, even if it turns out to be true.
Trust But Verify

TBV experienced a massive traffic spike with the document release on October 12th, which has settled back to a lower level that is higher than before the release. Readers have been a big help finding items and commenting on pieces I've been unable to listen to or watch on my own.
Our special thanks to all those who have helped!

I keep hoping that we'll enter into some kind of lull, which would be good for my sleep schedule, but it hasn't happened yet.


It should come as little surprise to anyone that the case has turned out to be quite complicated, at least to people who are willing to look at the evidence. Many people who had been pretty firmly convinced of Landis' culpability are now willing to consider that he may not have done anything. For the most part, they are unwilling to accept the defense that has been offered as being completely convincing, but they are willing to see that it is not open-and-shut clear. Better defense arguments may persuade a lot of people that he has been unjustly accused.

At the same time, there are fanatics of both persuasions who will never be convinced by anything, what Mr. Rumsfeld used to call "dead enders". All you can do is be patient and hope such people will eventually see reason.

Thanks for reading! We'll keep going as long as it takes to get to a resolution.


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Saturday, October 28, 2006

Saturday Roundup

7:00pm, time for the first TBV update. You're getting what you paid for today...

McQuaid unhappy with Puerto, says AFP/VeloNews, and accepts no responsibility in the least. Everything is someone else's fault.

Now That's Amateur considers the role of belief in doping cases, as a probability factor with a calculator.

Triple Crankset notes the PR swipes of the week, from ASO and from Floyd.

Matthew says "
two steps forward, two steps back and fall over."

BeanTownGecko gets so much wrong it's hard to know where to begin.

Smoke and Mirrors follows up an earlier post with a reminder that things stay the same.

Tour photos from the Tourmelat.

Steve Lavey talks about release on Oct 12, gets a number of details wrong, but generally positive.

Extreme presentation reviews the slide set on Oct 12.


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Friday, October 27, 2006

Friday Roundup

Yes, Oscar, you can be Champ if Floyd is DQed, says IHT. Asterix , er, asterisk won't be number #1. Also in VeloNews.

VeloNews describes the video in some detail.

Officially off crutches -- Floyd.com says so in progress report by Dr. Kay:

By the end of the first month he was riding one hour on the trainer and was no longer using crutches. He has no pain and will begin riding on the road now with the goal of gradually building strength over the next 4-6 weeks to allow him to return to normal training in preparation for the 2007 Tour de France.
Comments are closed, alas.

Daily Peloton considers doping in two articles, part one (why) and part two (what do do). Vaughn thinks openness is part of the solution, perhaps a "truth and reconciliation" effort as done in South Africa post apartheid.

CyclingNews picks up the "take down the UCI" comment in Madison, and Michael Henson tap dances and pirouettes.

Amber speaks to Daily Peloton, part 1 of 3. Mrs TBV will recognize this:
Would he bring his doubts and concerns home and talk to you about them? Or would he only talk to his coaches and trainers?

It depends how giving he is that day. He doesn't like to talk about things too much. I have to pry things out of him.

Floyd: The problem is that I feel like I've been talking about everything. It's all just in my head and I don't realize I never said anything out loud!

Amber: That's the thing! He's always thinking it in his head, and he thinks his head talks to my head!

Part I concludes after Stage 16.


Velochimp lays into the cracked glass.
Doucheblog does likewise.
Velogal jumps on.

RBR on Puerto and Landis, provoked by Doucheblog.

Double-Toungued notes Wikipedian Defense based on the Boulder Report of Oct 24 for the lexicographers. Hmmm, I cited FL as saying Wikipedia Defense (no 'n') on Oct 8, so priority is mine! Is the the place to start the citation trail for roostered?


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Thursday, October 26, 2006

Thursday Roundup


Ullrich cleared in Spain; ESPN's Kreider thinks it's good news for Landis.

If the result serves anyone, it may just be Landis, if for no other reason than that the Ullrich case makes it abundantly clear, once again, just how slippery the truth can be.
Tour Route unveiled -- CyclingNews, VeloNews/AFP, IHT/AP, Grauniad: 3547k, 11 flat, 2 ITT, 6 mountain, 3 mountain top finishes. AP:
In the presentation, the traditional eight-minute film ends with Landis on the winner's podium, with the screen then switching to become a cracked mirror.
Unfortunately, the issue today is not where the Tour goes, but rather the direction in which it and the sport it represents are headed.
The rhetoric from Prudhomme and Clerc has not moderated.

Reuters quotes Oscar and Prudhomme as more ambivalently waiting an outcome that is not under their control.

Pez passes on quote from Axel Merckx:
Floyd is a friend. If he has said to me that he is innocent, I believe him. Firstly because I have seen nothing and then because I don’t know why he would lie to me.
Same Pez article has outgoing TdF head Leblanc telling L'Equipe he is concerned
for the sport he loves becoming ‘dehumanised’ with the ProTour encouraging teams to become too big. This expansion of the teams to meet the ProTour demands is, according to Leblanc ruining the sport. “The big teams are becoming these big machines…one can not speak truly of the team spirit. There are riders in the same team who never meet each other.”
McEwen scoffs at the "shorten the tour to reduce doping" suggestion.

Hall of Fame Magazine considers Landis:
It's doubtful that we will ever know if Landis knowingly and willingly used synthetic testosterone to gain an unfair advantage. Even the most astute follower of the case may only reach a judgment call at best. . . .

In a brilliant tactical move, Floyd Landis has placed his entire defense of the charges online (www.floydlandis.com). It is perhaps, the single greatest case of Cyber Ethics put forth in our post-electronic society...

Quite honestly, the way immediate and mass opinion railed against Landis, we don't deserve the truth in this case.
Bradley Wiggens probably won't be sending Landis a Christmas card, based on comments reported in BikeBiz.

Snark 'o the Day
Tufts college paper with a top-ten list of cheaters. Landis at #2.[courtesy emailer Gene]


Anyone wanting to contribute to the DPF cursed by popularity fund can send donations via paypal here, according to this post.

Rant returns with a chew on the unveiling: "Surreal"

PJ wonders about the geography depicted in the 2007 Tour logo, and also says the riders will make the race.

Podium Cafe calls the broken glass video classless, also considers contractual issues and DNA samples, finding the UCI position wanting. Comments agree with Landis that UCI should go away.

Smithers says Landis's chances in 2007 tour are less than excellent:
I can tell you for sure who is not going to win: Floyd Landis. Even if, by some miracle, he skates by being sanctioned and is allowed to race in 2007, Amaury Sport Organization (ASO) is never going to invite what ever team Landis finds himself on to race the 2007 event. That’s just the reality of it. ASO is still mortified that their race was tainted in 2006 and they have proven time and again that they can hold a grudge.
Quincy discusses Wikipedia Defense, misses the LandisCase wiki.

Mention of the Saris/Wisconsin fundraiser points to pictures here. Still has crutches in some of these shots. The Floyd Watch continues.


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Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Wednesday Roundup

Dr. Arnie Baker's presentation recordings from FloydLandis.com now mirrored on archive.org for 'just click' play, audio (various formats) and video (various formats).

Ancient (Aug 5) link to TBV on "steephill.tv", a video cycling site that looks interesting.

Quote of the Day

[Shorten the Tour?]

"I think they should shorten the long jump." (link)
UCI Protour Director Rumpf thinking about shorter Grand Tours to "combat doping", says IHT. And destroying organizations that aren't going along with his political agenda would be tragic collateral damage, I suppose. And they aren't his events to shorten anyway. Also touched on in CyclingNews.

Lamour selected as nominee to replace Mr. Pound, according to AP via VeloNews. Previously reported as a possibility.

VeloNews has Peirero frustrated with the way this years results may be reported. He wants the winner to be clear after all is sorted out, not an asterix with him second. Threatens not to ride the 2007 tour. Here's a grenade:
Echávarri even suggested that Tour officials knew that Landis failed his "A" sample following his victory into Morzine before the Tour finished arrived to Paris.
which would violate just about everything there is left about the already shredded process rules.

ProTour directors run for the cover of DNA tests, hanging Basso and Ullrich out to dry. They say they want all riders to "take DNA tests that would categorically prove" something, certainly that they have blood.

Tour Route Unveiling covered by AFP, reporting ASO sniping at UCI; Reuters concentrates on the route itself with what must be pre-announcement data; TodayOnline [courtesy Paula] says Oscar, no Floyd, Ivan, Jan or Vino; BikingBis too.

NY Sun Society Page discusses Halloween costumes of the would-be idle rich: Floyd Landis and his doping doctor.

WCBS/AP has Landis on a list of well known accused cheaters, along with Jayson Blair, James Frey, Stephen Glass, Tanya Harding, Martha Stewart, Jeffrey Skilling, Ken Lay, Sammy Sosa, Ward Churchill, Frankie Andreu and James McGreevey. Except all but Landis were convicted or open and shut cases.

DPF has paid the price of popularity. Having been shutdown on the 24th by hitting a bandwidth limit on their server, they reached an accomodation with their ISP and returned to life about 16:50 PT on the 25th. With a wave of the magic credit card, the pumpkin transforms back into a working system.

Dugard is thinking about going back to the Tour, after saying never again, just to see Floyd win two in a row. Mulling the Griswold experience, which may be near the Cotswolds and the UK start.

SFTwin talks about Oscar the Grouch and the messed up process.

MedX-Flash: A few recent pictures suggest Landis has gotten antsy and tossed his crutches in the river. Maybe the DPF outage has gotten him wanting to see the outside world again. Courtesy ROAD Magazine. Click on pix for the original article.

DPF is back, but you may still Go read and help edit the LandisCase Wiki


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Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Tuesday Roundup

Hip Resurfacing gets a feature in Boulder; minimal Landis hook, but informative. Says that resufacing can't correct length the way replacement can. Floyd had lost an inch, so that raises the question whether the procedure left that unchanged.

Tour route unveiling on Thursday is turning into a pissing exhibition of no-shows and non-invites, says VeloNews.

AP report thatUCI is demanding WADA intervene in Puerto, perhaps to demonstrate that WADA is as toothless as the UCI is when faced with uncooperative federations and law enforcement. Originally noticed in a comment to this post. Also covered by CyclingNews, with expansion including Landis mention.

San Luis Obispo columnist mea culpas her earlier leap to guilty conclusion.

Roadcycling talks aero positions, and calls Landis's wierd.

The Bike Show has an interview with Eddy Merckx from UK Cycle 2006 show. [updated] Starts about 24:00. Still riding 7000km a year! On Landis, doesn't want to go into polemic, he's not a doctor. Doesn't know how cycling can end this period of controversy, but hopes it is the last time.

DPF's PowerPoint Review has a new summary of TE testing. In post #330, Duckstrap finishes off as follows:

5. According to the WADA standard for determination of TE ratio, the identity and quantitation of the putative T and E peaks must be definitively confirmed by at least 2, more likely 3 ions in the mass spectrum (TD2004EAAS, p. 2 and TD1003IDCR, pp 1-2, section on "Mass Spectrometric Detection"). LNDD does not show this information anywhere in this packet, although the corresponding data are clearly displayed in the IRMS test (an entirely different assay). Lack of these confirmatory data is, in my view, more than sufficient to declare the assay results invalid, especially because ...

6. There is evidence of interference in the assay results by one or more unknown substances in the urine blank and low-concentration spiked samples, (compare especially the urine blank sample on USADA 0091 and the blank spiked with 2 ng/mL each of T and E on USADA 0100).
FloydLandis.com posts audio/video of Arnie Baker's presentation in San Diego. Haven't heard yet, so I don't know if anything is different. I'll mirror up to archive.org when I get a chance.

Bicycling's Boulder Report follows up, says discussions are going back and forth, that Arnie Baker coined the "Wikipedia defense" phrase, and that Landis will have a harder time claiming miscarriage of justice if he's found culpable. Remains a skeptic of everything:
Landis’ online defense is not the smoking gun in his favor that perhaps was hoped.

There are serious questions about how the test was conducted, but no one has been able to definitively say that the test was flawed or the testers were so sloppy in conducting it that the results should be disregarded.

ScienceFiction Twin revisits the case, and is uncertain of the truth; thinks the process is screwed, and cites the LandisCase wiki for why. Also plugs TBV, so is clearly well-informed.

Neil@Road says "No Landis News Today!" but runs his fave pix.

Crazy John
cites Landis in an article about cheating in general, with titillating illustration.

On The Borderline references Landis in an article prasing Lances' reaction to the new book.

Banshee wonders if anyone cares about the Tour unveiling amid all the other crap going on.

In comments to TBV, FLITM says he and Banshee have made up.

LandisCase Wiki is making progress filling in the site as initially planned.

More help still needed.

Snarky Columnist Dept.

San Diego Chargers linebacker Shawne Merriman faces a four-game suspension for testing positive for steroids, several news organizations reported.

League officials were tipped off when Merriman hit four home runs against Kansas City on Sunday, sprinted to the parking lot in 9.77 seconds, hopped on his bicycle and reached home before you could say Floyd Landis.

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Monday, October 23, 2006

Monday Roundup

VeloNews prognosticates about Thursday's Tour Route announcement, mulling the ways they may dis *-- edit him out of the video, use an asterisk where his name should be.

TechCrunch talks about Box.net, and Landis' use of it to host the released documents.

Neil@ROAD covers Landis appearance at Canine Companions for Independance dinner.

Agent Futura notes the discrepencies in fan bases, and bemoans lack of visibility about cycling. '*' hook as TV person can't remember Landis' name, but can remember what he thinks his offense was.

In comments to yesterday's Roundup, Spinopsys Phil keeps pounding the "take down the UCI" remark attributed to Landis in the Madison print interview. It does come off harsh enough as quoted that one wonders if maybe the reporter lost some nuance, or Floyd talked himself into a corner, as he did with the notorious, "I'll say no."


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Sunday, October 22, 2006

Ties that Unwind

In yesterday's roundup, Landis said he wanted to take down the UCI. The obvious question that follows is what to replace it with. To TBV, the nearest comparisons are to racing with motors. The parallels between auto racing, and the perils and rewards are illuminating. Here are some things to start thinking about...

  • The USAC/CART split for Indy car racing in 1979. The teams, fed up with the incompetence of the sanctioning body, formed their own series. USAC lost the series, but kept the Indy 500, the major event. An uneasy truce let CART teams run and win in the 500, but frustration stewed for years.
  • The subsequent CART/IRL split as the premier event set up its own sanctioning body and series. Attempts by CART to compete head on failed, and CART eventually went bust, kept alive by buyouts.
  • The de-jure world championship of the FIA, Formula-1, has been nurtured to the exclusion of other forms of FIA competition, notably Sports Cars (LeMans) and Rallying. When push comes to shove, all decisions by the FIA have been to strenghten F1 at any cost to other series. The series stuggles to keep full fields and their are constant complaints about the cost structure. Organizers get rich, a few teams do well. Others teamscome and go on the whim of sponsorship money that is difficult to come by without results that require huge budgets.
  • In the meantime, a closely run parochial series gains massive popular acceptance with competitive racing, full fields and cost-effective technology. Teams, drivers and the series on a gravy train: NASCAR.
  • And if you want to get wonky, the World of Outlaws split off from USAC dirt track racing as well, because USAC wouldn't allow wings (among other things).
It's easy enough to paint the UCI as the FIA or USAC in the analogy, and the grand tours as events like the Indy 500 or LeMans. Consider mountain biking to be sports cars or rallying -- loved by some, but co-opted by the sanctioning body and marginalized to commercial oblivion.
And you might look at USCF and USACycling as the old USAC.

Looking at the USAC/CART split of '79, there are two important points. One, USAC was toothless, and could do nothing to prevent CART from starting and continuing to run. Two, the breakaway wasn't joined by the big event, and this caused problems later.

This is different than the UCI, which through national federations can discipline riders for participating in things they don't like. The threats made to riders for racing in unsanctioned races against Tyler Hamilton when he was on suspension are a recent example. This is similar to the de-jure power the FIA holds in auto racing. In Europe in particular, the FIA has been very heavy handed and has referred to things as "illegal races" when not under their sanctioning authority. The FIA has been trying to crush LeMans for decades - which sounds a lot like the struggle between the UCI and the Tour. The French parties are similar sounding, but not the same -- the ASO is not related to the ACO that runs LeMans.

Pressure doesn't matter when the drivers and the teams of the independant series don't care to participate in races under the old sanctioning umbrella. It does matter when the breakaway series isn't big enough to keep the teams and drivers fully occupied and they want to do something else, but can't because of pressure from the other body.

What of NASCAR? Drivers and teams that land there stay. It is popular, lucrative, offers good competition, and is "fair enough". There is cheating, but it is managed in a way that is perceived to be effective. To some degree, there is a culture of tolerance of rogues, up to a point, and then a hammer comes down.

If the FIA tried to impose some rule, NASCAR would ignore it. Attempts by the FIA to lean on tracks that run NASCAR events would be met with laughter by the ownership. NASCAR makes everybody money. Running FIA events makes somebody money, but it isn't the promoters or the teams.

The history of Sprint Cars offers some cautionary reading. From time to time the World of Outlaws looked poised for success, but fall back because of politics with the remaining USAC series, and the vaguaries of media ownership changes and interest.

Some Key Lessons of History
  1. A breakaway needs a viable schedule so it doesn't need to be concerned with sanctions and pressure from the entrenched or de-jure organizations.
  2. A breakaway needs good relations with the key events to survive in the long term.
  3. A breakaway needs to happen at a moment when there is weak leadership of the incumbent organization.
  4. A breakaway needs strong leadership to speak with one voice. This involves teams giving up some of their autonomy.
  5. The breakaway gives up some claims of legitimacy, and needs to work as a commercial entity on its own merits. In cycling, that means bailing on the Olympics.
  6. You can't count on media support without the key events, and even then, it's fickle.
What Else?

The main alternative to doing a breakaway organization is to have a coup that replaces the leadership of the original body. I can't think of a good example of where that has happened.

This post scratches the surface of what might happen with a restructuring of cycling as a sport with regard to the UCI. I'm sure readers will have different opinions and additional thought.

Let's hear what you've got to say!



An article with perspective, includes the Dan Gurney whitepaper that led to the formation of CART.

Wikipedia on Champ Car, particularly the history section.

Timeline of CART/USAC/IRL. Note the plane crash in '78 that left USAC leadership-challenged in a key period, with link to raw version of Gurney whitepaper.

Another piece
, from AutoMedia.

Motorsport magazine opinion piece on CART/IRL.

Atlas F1 Rear View Mirror has a broader perspective.

Bending rules ain't exactly cheating in NASCAR, exactly, but it's not like the old days either.

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Sunday Roundup

CyclingNews covers Madison, talking traffic safety and Birmingham hip.

Sam Abt of the IHT considers all the offseason doping news.

NY Daily News columnist makes snark: "No kidding, I really did try to open Floyd Landis' online defense last week, but my computer thought it was spam." Rim shot. Thanks, he'll be here all week.

SFTwin clarifies comments on Spokesman podcast.

Spinopsys thinks Landis' comment on taking the UCI down is indication he's lost touch with reality, drunk his own Kool-Aid, and probably jumped the shark.

Micro Persusion
considers the PR effort, likes it, but makes some under-informed recommendations. The community is way ahead of him. They had previously considered the case way back when.

Old (Sep 28) Banshee post on business impact. Looks like cannibalizing your stars is not in the best interests of anyone but Mr. Pound.

FLITM pokes fun, I hope, at Banshee's post yesterday, which was poking fun at him.

The Wikipedia defense got its own Wikipedia coverage on October 16, but not a full entry.

The LandisCase Wiki, still in startup, seems to have gotten another contributor, "Amateur", who I'm guessing is from the Now That's Amateur blog that posted a good review TBV covered last week. He's added some good detail about the case process and the contamination issue.

More help needed -- listen up DPF people!


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Saturday, October 21, 2006

Saturday Roundup

WMTV covers Madison appearance, text and video.

More detailed interview

by Madison Capital Times. Citing hip problems, he may not be in top form for the 2007 Tour, even if cleared.

Not mincing words, "I'm going to do everything I can to bring the down the UCI," said Landis with his usual candor.

Chris Fortune of Saris Cycling is thinking of setting up a defense fund.

On the Isle of Grenada, things including news move slowly, and we get this report yesterday about Landis complaining about errors in his tests.


The most useful discussions continue to be at Daily Peloton Forums. Some of them have veered deeply into science, and I'm unable to summarize with any useful accuracy. Floyd seems to have mostly left the building.

Banshee immortalizes FLITM, of the best T shirt designs:

Doucheblog goes after McQuaid for killing Phonak/iShares. Proprieter Hoovis seems to be my evil twin -- when I try to gently correct a silly website, he moves in with high explosives. See for instance yesterdays comments to Brad Kearns.

Bell Lap admits to changing his mind completely since August.

Straight Dope points to the rap video Bikin Dirty again.

Nashville Cyclist says Floyd and Jan should shut up.

Future ProjectUnknown says, "Floyd Landis should shut his mouth and give up his defense, because no matter what he will be a cheater. "

I guess Floyd will think both of the above are losers. Pix at left may have been taken when he heard of them. Or not.

Ongoing discussion at Corante is mostly pointless, but talks about TBV so we'll plug ourselves because we can.

Lengthy and Detailed "modern" history of doping control in cycling and the formation of WADA and integration with the UCI, from Daily Peloton in 2003. Added to Key References.

The LandisCase Wiki in early startup, needs more contributors.

Youse people at DPF, help out, please.


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Friday, October 20, 2006

Friday Roundup

Wisconsin Radio blurbs Landis appearance for bike paths, notes controversy.

Letters to CyclingNews are appalled by the lab work, critical of an attempt to hold to the one metabolite standard, and scathing to the organizations that shot their mouth off.

Letters to VeloNews all dope, all the time. Says one,

I am astounded to hear him [McQuaid] talk out of both sides of his mouth in his answer to the first question:
"iShares put this off because of what Floyd Landis did." followed shortly after with "As I keep saying over and over, until the process on Landis is completed, he still has the presumption of innocence."
At DPF, some interesting wandering may be turning something up on the cortisone interactions around post 316.

Manic Cyclist has his impressions of Menonites [sic] change again.
J's Place says Not Guilty.
La Flamme Rouge reviews current affairs mostly LA and UCI, in google translation from Francais.

Brad Kearns, author a new Lance book, throws Floyd under the bus in an article titled, "Why Lance is Clean."

Neil bags interview with Landis for ROAD magazine, but doesn't spill anything.

Bloodthirsty Vegetarians riffs that "Floyd Landis thinks people are still listening..."; I haven't listened.


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Thursday, October 19, 2006

The Wiki defense gets its Wiki

DPF participant Thomas A Fine, of research we've linked before, has started a Wiki for technical details. It's at LandisCase.wikispaces.com, and opened today after Tom spent several days setting up and seeding it. I've subscribed to the RSS feed and will post pointers here at TBV.

I hope Tom can get, collect, sift and organize the DPF material, which has gotten too fast moving and technical for me to do it justice. I'm out of time to do much more myself. With luck, this will produce coordinated investment of effort, resulting in dynamic synergy of the refactored disorganizational workload, as well as full ISO-9001 buzzword compliance.


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Thursday Roundup

Jacobs gets a feature in the Mercury News.

CyclingNews feature on the Landis evidence by Laura Weislo. She pretty much accepts all criticism of the Landis arguments, including Christiane Ayotte's assertions that only one metabolite is necessary for a CIR positive. DPF post on the article observes only .31% of TE screen positives end up confirmed, and that "about 70% of athletes initially screened at 10:1 would subsequently be shown to have a T/E of less than four on the confirmation test shows how much variability between screening and confirmation tests typically occurs."

Mr. Pound will get replaced, candidates emerge according to the Grauniad. Article says Pound is on a 7 year term that ends in November 2007, which is news to me since I didn't see that in WADA documents and there is no use of 'term' for the chair in the constitutive document. Jean-Francois Lamour is up against Viachhelav Fetisov for the European nomination, to eventually go up against an American nominee. Lamour is a gold-medal fencer, Fetisov a former hockey player. Discussed at DPF.

Lemond speaks to Pez at some length about doping; sounds reasonable, and doesn't talk specifically about Landis.

O'Grady says drug claims "A load of crap", in this article, without mentioning Landis. [courtesy emailer Gene] Discussed at DPF.

Spokesman podcast discusses Landis, talks with Vaughn of Daily Peloton [thanks Carlton]. Haven't heard myself yet. Discussed at ScienceFiction Twin, who points us to a clip of Carlton saying, "testosterone does not make you go downhill faster." I'm not sure I buy that -- it one believes the psychological effect theory, you can imagine a testo-jacked dude descending like a madman. The phrase, "balls ten, brains zero" seems to catch the drift of that theory.

Rant is downbeat about the Keystone Kops of the anti-doping brigade.
Podium Cafe riffs on Lance with Floyd mention, and jabs at Lemond in the Pez story above.
Ranch Rider feels duped by pro cycling, repeats confused claim that Landis has 1100% too much testosterone.

Banshee says strategy might work.

Justin went to Baker's presentation, left during Q&A to get coffee, and ran into Floyd.

Randal Friesen
buys the Landis show.

GCMS for dummies, with moving pictures, at Oregon State.


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Wednesday, October 18, 2006

What does it take to provoke a lab audit?

According to the WADA International Standard for Laboratories (ISL), WADA is allowed to do an audit of an accredited laboratory at any time, for any reason, or no reason at all. To the best of our knowledge, the LNDD has never been the subject of such an audit, nor do we know of any other labs that have been audited after their initial accreditations.


This raises questions:

  • Why is the audit clause in the ISL?
  • Does WADA think audits are a bad thing?
  • Why have there been no audits?
  • What would it take to provoke an audit?
  • If an audit is called for, should its scheduling be related to that of open cases?
The impression given is that WADA has complete faith in the accreditation process and it's proficiency testing, so there is is no need to ever perform an audit. Yet the clause exists in the ISL, and must be there for a reason.

It seems like an abnegation of the oversight role WADA ought to be having over the laboratories. If they are not providing the oversight, who is? In business, companies have outside auditors to validate that their records as reported are correct. When there are questions raised about possibly improper activities, the first thing done is an audit.

In the example of the LNDD and Landis cases, there have been plenty of questions raised about the performance of the laboratory. A reasonable reaction by WADA would be to run an audit on the lab before the case was concluded. This would be resolve any institutional concerns or questions that the case was being properly put forward. The result might be a whitewash (always a possibility), it might reveal problems that ought to be corrected, or it might add credibility to the labs reputation at a time when it has been doubted.

If the questions that have been raised against the LNDD are not enough to provoke an audit, what would it take to do so? Then, if an audit is needed, is it proper to adjust its schedule because of perceived politics about outstanding cases involving the lab? That is, is it proper for WADA to advance or delay a deserved audit to do it before a case hearing, or push it off until after the hearing?

An organization that is attempting to uphold ethical standards and have a desire for truth and justice ought to be responsive to such concerns. Blindly asserting total faith in organizations that need oversight and supervision is not an effective way to ensure public confidence.

In the case of the LNDD, the appropriate action should be to conduct an immediate and full audit of the lab before the Landis case goes to hearing. If the lab comes out with a clean bill of health, that strengthens the ADA case. If it has notable failings, that data should be made available to the Landis defense. Doing anything less is dishonest.


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Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Wednesday Roundup

Quote of the day

Floyd's treatment has very little to do with his nationality. Floyd is collateral damage in a Franco-Swiss shootout, in which two of the major players are Irish and Canadian. link
Basso leaves CSC, silly season full swing. CyclingNews, BBC, Eurosport, IHT, VeloNews; PJ is snarky.

Christian! Varin! Quits! the UCI Anti-Doping Office, says the IHT. This is the gentleman who sent the Excited! FAX! [courtesy Carlton.]

CyclingNews notes Landis appearance in Wisconsin, forthcoming new anti-Lance book.

Sports Economist briefly considers the wiki defense, says "Fight the Power!"
Crystalzenmud buys the Landis line.
Sabin Iqbal hasn't seen anything to change his first impression.
Black Coffee buys the public defense

Anonymous Fortune Teller makes a comment to this post repeating his previous prognostications (here, here, and here) that Basso walks, Ullrich gets life ban, and Floyd blood doped. He's feeling cocky because of Basso. Still looking for an in-depth discussion of the blood doping theory.

At DPF, rational head explains the scientific part of the testing process, TBV wonders about inlet pressure and flow rate inconsistencies, and no one cares. Sniff.

At Topix, Will does us the favor of typing in parts the November SciAm "Catchy Carbon" article, unfortunately, only the parts that present it as infallible. We referred to this previously, and addressed by Floyd personally at DPF. Will@Topix is revealed thoroughly in this thread.


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Tuesday Roundup

Quote of the Day

Irony is like pewtery, only harder link

McQuaid compares Landis to Puerto in CyclingNews. Says the Landis case is worse for the public image, but Puerto signifies deeper internal problems because testing didn't catch anyone. PJ calls this backpedalling doubletalk on both cases.

RoadCycling covers release.


Now that's Amateur does an excellent detailed review picking out new oddities and inconsistencies, with references to the TBV page archive. This is the kind of look we'd hope for, three cheers. NTA also has an editorial introduction where he tries to be as skeptical as he can be about the Landis claims.

Sample number handwriting complaints considered by blogger; he thinks they are bunk.

Floyd.com praised for Birmingham hip ad
Uh oh, competition in the celebrity hip endorsement market.

Transformatum thinks it's tit for tat with the ADA leaks.
Chattablogs takes both sides.
RaceJunkie meanders around, slagging everyone, Floyd, Ivan and Jan, I think.
RawEditorial pulls no punches: It's them Frenchies.

Portugese homage: "O Powerpoint de Floyd Landys"
En Espanol, two more: here and here; the latter looks almost interesting, try google translation.

DPF splits the discussion of Landis out of Doping into its own forum. There is a new thread there called Science for Dummies, meaning those of us who have gotten lost when the subscripts started coming into the discussion. A different discussion on Legal Matters touches on discovery, and folks seem too used to the US legal system to fathom the constraints that apply.

Substantively, some of the skeptics staring at the data, reports, and scientific literature are starting to turn Landis's direction in this thread and this one.

On Usenet, Dirtdogs Birmingham Cycling is being persuaded, as is Oxford Cycling. RBR wonders what reaction he'll get if cleared, and who gets him next year.

Our deepest condolences to Rant, whose dad, a real nuclear scientist, passed away.


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