Thursday, January 04, 2007

Thursday Roundup

Floyd of the Day

[Floyd] was leaving his lawyer's office in L.A. A homeless guy was laying down on the sidewalk with a cardboard sign asking for money. Landis, being big-hearted, gives him $40. The homeless guy thanks him and asks what Landis does for a living. He tells him that he's a cyclist. The homeless guy presses Landis for details and he tells him that he won the Tour de France. The guy then wanted Floyd to autograph his cardboard sign. "My real fear was that he was going to argue with me and tell me that Pereiro won it!"


FloydFairnessFund is open.
It's an advocacy site and takes PayPal, not tax deductable. Press release here, from the site. No mention on at this time.

The site contains direct downloads of many of the case documents, including translations of the slide show for Europeans. The new piece is a set of recommendations authored by Arnie Baker for improving the process in ways that improve transparency, accuracy, and fairness. Bulleted:
  • Public reporting of WADA committee minutes, test validity studies, and positivity criteria;
  • Bar coded tracking, always.
  • Check digits (an important technical point).
  • Public Standard Operating Procedures for labs.
  • Mandatory degradation reporting for markers.
  • Mandatory percent error reporting.
  • Unified standards for false positive rates
  • Limit test exposure based on false positive rates.
  • Flexibility in sanctions for fairness.
  • Unequal jeopardy: many parties may appeal for sanction vs. one athlete.
  • Public reporting of Lab error rates, tracking of AAFs, and Arbitration decisions.
  • Truly blind lab proficiency testing.
  • Freedom for lab experts to testify.
  • Oversight for WADA
Which does't seem like an irresponsible set of requests.

(Site bugs: The slide show file name is misspelled, and not a single mention of TBV, not even in the extensive press clippings. Sniff. We'll be better after a pint of Cherry Garcia.)

Reuters covers FFF launch, as does the CBC and TSN:
Supporters of disgraced Tour de France winner Floyd Landis have set up a website which is seeking funds to help Landis clear his name of doping charges.

BikeBiz covers FFF, quoting our summary.

Marc, our Correspondent in Paris, reports the French press has not yet covered the FFF, but this might be because of time zones. He does say that Le Figaro has a piece about John Lelangue, the Phonak DS, that is not kind to Landis, prodding Marc to write a mini-rant:
I'm a little steamed. [...] French TV had a camera inside Lelangue's car through the whole of the decisive final TT of the Tour. There wasn't anything--not anything--about FL's ride that
wasn't directed by Lelangue: how low Floyd should be on the bars, where he should be on the road, how he should set up for turns, eveything. (It was a little embarrassing, in fact. Most riders memorize this themselves, I thought.) It is inconceivable to me that FL could have put ANY substance, legal or illegal, into his body without Lelangue knowing it . . . hell, directing it. For him now to pretend it's all a shock to him, and, as he says in the story--"I have confidence in the AMA investigations, in the UCI, the Ministry of Sports, the lab at Ch√Ętenay-Malabry. The infraction is clear; it's proven. It's up to Landis to prove that he's innocent. And I hope this doesn't turn out the way it did for Landaluze"--fills me with disgust.

Newsweek column via MSNBC mentions Landis in discussion of stick and ball doping, and says,
Landis is challenging the evidence, a clash of science that could have a huge impact on drug testing in the future.

but doesn't go any further with it.

AME Info (United Arab Emirates) hopes for the right kind of sports headlines in 2007.

At Digg, thinnman dug the CBC interview with Landis.

Lij is irked the Graham Watson calendar has no Floyd.

Donald Walker, proclaimed liberal Canadian, was not impressed by the CBC piece, which he thought went timidly straight down the middle and didn't offer any conclusions, despite the sensational tagline "Cycle of Denial". He calls his piece "Expose or Vendetta?", which is in its own way just as misleading, because he says it's neither!

Droidlocks ran into the Wired piece, and looks at it fresh as an outsider. It's down a ways in the post.

A Rant's eye look at the FFF site suggests Team Landis has found another gear for the defense. Rant had first ran the FFF press release w/o comment. Earlier, he talked more about who should accredit labs, and that's turning into quite a discussion. TBV still doesn't think it's within ISO accrediters expertise.

Alan Snel/Bike Stories says "They Want to Give a Hand to Landis" and also pretty much runs the press release (with minimal comment) on the FFF.

Athletebrities likes the FFF.

Steroid Nation is very skeptical of the FFF, and thinks Landis should have done lots of his own tests. Its not clear to TBV who, or how or when those would have made a difference, since they would not have been the same samples under the same conditions. Later, SN gives TBV a plug, which we appreciate. We don't always agree with SN, but it's usually a reasoned point of view.

SayOw writes:
Floyd Landis supporters start fund to clear his name. What once seemed as a clear-cut doping case against the 2006 Tour de France winner, Floyd Landis, seems to be losing momentum and public support. Now Landis has a group of supporters rallying behind him and his cause. All this will mean that cycling will be less cared about in America than it already is because of the perception of cheating and unfairness.

The Angry Fan's year end review talks about the good, the bad and the ugly. Ugly includes:
The doping throughout cycling which saw some of cycling's biggest names banned from competing in the Tour de France and the incompetent way in which testing and storing samples continues to be done by international anti-doping authorities, which have now cast doubts on their implication of Floyd Landis, and the way in which the appeals process is being stalled while his career is on hold pending the hearing.

MPL offers as one of the top phrases of the year this from Landis pose S16:
“It was very hot, I think that was the only explanation for the water. Or maybe it was because the beer I had last night.”

DPF covers the FFF opening; also, spirited discussion over on the in this thread about last night's CBC "Cycle of Denial" documentary :
Cycling Newbee said ,Yeah, I agree with your analysis overall. But, when Floyd said the test results were not positive the interviewer questioned him with a skeptical tone and then when Floyd gave a brief explanation (you'd have to read the 370 pages of documents) the interviewer completely blew off that response with basically an "uh-huh" in a tone that a reading between lines would be "yeah, your so full of sh1t; just another guilty doper coming up with lame excuses." So, I guess I heard a certain amount of skepticism from the interviewer towards Floyd.
And at the fearful risk of sending this thread on an already rehashed (ad naseum I'm sure) issue, this whole Besty/Andreau story regarding LA has never quite passed the smell test for me. Would he really admit to such things in front others, much less a friend's GIRLFRIEND? Now HE'S the one being accused of being STUPID if that's the case. I don't know; don't want to go off on a tangent here and start a big "thing;" just stating my observations of the story/show.



Anonymous said...

With regards to Newbee's questions about LA telling the details of his alleged doping scheme to Frankie's wife, one has to remember that Lance is the villain in that story and Frankie's wife is James Bond.

And we all know that the villain always spills the beans on his plan. It's a tradition! There's no logic behind it.

Thinnmann said...

hey TbV - you wrote: "Blogs
At Digg, thinnman dug the CBC interview with Landis."

Thanks for finding that. I have been digging Landis stuff because I am using their script to feed my diggs to my blog.

About the interview - I am an English teacher (which I note to give some supposed authority to my critical reading skills), and here is my take on the transcript: If a person just reads the transcript, which is what I did first, Floyd comes off as being a little confused, maybe sounding like he is lying, or even not very intelligent, as he struggles with some of his words. He has learned, certainly, that he has to choose his words very carefully right now. This tone I perceive in the transcript is because they did a literal word-for-word transcription. As I was reading I was thinking that the interview as not good for the cause. Then I watched the videos, where Floyd looks and sounds a lot better. He was cooler and more comfortable than in his HBO Real Sports interview, for example. I am wondering if the word-for-word transcript was a decision made by CBC for honesty in reporting, or if they wanted Floyd to "sound" bad in written form.

Anonymous said...

The Floyd Fairness Fund makes great points.

WADA clearly has problems.

The fund looks like it is tying to improve the system for everyone.

daniel m (a/k/a Rant) said...


Been a busy day in Rantland. Have no fear, commentary will appear.

- Rant

Anonymous said...

Could Marc translate the entire Figaro article? Pretty please?

It sounds like I will be even more disgusted with John Lelangue than before.

Anonymous said...

Org here ....


The Newsweek quote is VERY interesting! Yest another media outlet suggesting USADA/WADA is toast if they lose.

Add them to the LA Times, Wired, The National, HBO and on and on.

Lie Floyd said, the winner gets nothing and the loser gets the death penalty. This quote suggests the death penalty even applies to USADA