Discussion in 'Cycling' started by I like to watch, Jun 14, 2012.
Cadel Evans. This thread. Elephant.
Got to agree with Scarfman. Cheating is cheating and should be investigated and punished to the full extent of the law, no matter how nice a bloke the accused is.
Really? I wouldn't protect an Aussie cheat for a second, but what evidence is there for anything? He's about the only cyclist on the tour to consistently condemn drug cheats. It's a hell of an act if it is one. Until there a whiff of smoke I think your insinuation is totally unfair to Cadel.
We all hope Cadel is a cleanskin in a very dirty sport.
If he is, then he must be good as it is assumed that EPO gives you 10% improvement in aerobic capacity and steroids and hgh give a 10% improvement in strength.
Operation Puerto revealed that one doctor had the EPO enriched blood of 56 cylists and thousands of doses of steroids. Thats a lot of competitors who get a 20% advantage and I guess there are other doctors doing the same thing.
So, Scarfy and others who suggest we hunt down Lance Armstrong and all other cycling cheats, can you elaborate upon the logical path that approach will follow and how that is to anyone's benefit.
Actually steroids just increase the body's ability to repair itself.
There's a reasonable case to be made for theraputic use of steroids - even for sports people.
Look at all the hamstring injuries we've had in Australia, right there is a specific clinical use for steroid treatment.
Why should sports stars be denied quality medical treatment?
I genuinely thought I did:
In my view, there's only one way to clean out a sport like cycling and that is to go hard.
How do you feel about the 1988 100m? A Canadian drug cheat beat an American drug cheat and one gets caught. One is a hero, one is a villian. Prosecute them all to the grave.
The skepticism that inevitably comes with anyone who achieves success in cycling nowadays is just such a shame for the great sport. Now I find myself questioning the achievements of the great Miguel Indurain. Damn it! Surely not.
Because it is cheating? That's like saying a rugby player who puts steel plates in his shoulder pads is allowed to get away with it. Armstrong is no different to anyone else, I could not give an arse how successful he was or his cancer story ect, if the prick cheated he deserves to be prosecuted and disgraced.
We all agree that if he did cheat then fine, he deserves everything he gets. But right now, he has been banned from competing because of accusations. We are annoyed because he has been made guilty until proven innocent.
That's fair enough, but when do we stop testing old samples? Lance I would dare say was/is the most tested athlete in the world. At the time he was competing he consistently turned negative results. BUT the French hated that an outsider could best them so often, so they continually kept digging hoping to find something.
Obviously those developing the drugs have to stay ahead of the current testing procedures. So, for how long do we continually back-test athletes once the procedures have caught up?
The reality is that cyclists have, since the early days of the sport, used performance enhancing substances. It wasn't regarded as wrong initially and was then accepted for a long time. As such, the logical conclusion of hunting down and discrediting all past drug cheats is that, subject only to the availability of evidence, you would wipe out many of the winners of major cycling events back to the beginning of time. Famous, feted, revered cyclists would be "exposed".
Now I dislike the idea of cheating as much as the next person, but it doesn't make sense to wipe out Armstrong, then get to Ulrich, then the next guy, then next and so on. What value is there in having done that? Does it really provide a greater disincentive for todays' cyclists than catching todays' cyclists who cheat?
A line in the sand must be drawn and you take forward your cleansing from that point. My argument is that, assuming Armstrong has taken drugs and they have evidence of it, the line in the sand should be drawn after Armstrong. Yes, of course I'm making an exception for him. The reason for this is that clean Armstrong will provide a greater benefit to the world than a successful prosecution will. Clean Armstrong is a fundraising machine doing great things for cancer research and cancer sufferers on a daily basis. Dirty Armstrong will be stripped of titles, be sued for sponsorship and prize money and have vastly reduced capacity to help the cancer world. The only winner in the latter case is lawyers.
Cutter - you obviously have a strong connection to Lance's charity work and that's fair enough. But do you feel the same way about Carl Lewis? Does charity work make you immune to rules? This isn't a straight cost/benefit exercise it's about doing what's right. That's mostly a rhetoical question because I think you and I might stick with our own positions pretty firmly on this one!
Anyway, good news today that Wiggins and Cadel both sending strong anti-drug messages. I still worry about the Wiggins data from a few years ago but I'll try to stay "positive" about the tour.
Does anyone think that (with the exception of a couple of stage winners) the riders look to be doing it tougher this year? Is the sport cleaning up and so the moderate climbs will lose more from the peloton? Or is the pace just so quick that not many can keep up?
I wouldn't say this year, but for the past 2/3 years the riders haven't looked unbreakable. The biggest thought I had was when I saw Basso being dropped off a "smaller hill" on Saturday night's stage. This was a guy who was battling it out to win mountain stages and since he's gotten caught he looks like a former shadow of himself.
So I think you're right that the sport is cleaning up, there doesn't appear to be any super-'landis'-man heroics, where a rider looks like they've cracked and the next morning blitz the field!
I think the line in the sand should be when they can stop proving the riders were using drugs. Surely there arent' viable samples to re-test from much earlier than the early 2000's. Sucks for Lance that if he was cheating, his samples can still be re-tested. But what a line in the sand to draw. The biggest most powerful message they can send is to take down the greatest rider in modern history (assuming they can 100%, unequivocally prove it). It might be the nadir that professional racing can rebuild from without all of this constant doubt that is thrown on whoever is currently leading the field.
Cutter, i'm with you 100% on this.
Seeing you seem to know quite a bit on the issue; I was speaking to someone about this on the weekend and they said Lance's charity doesn't spend a cent on cancer research. Do you know if this is correct? If that's true, it's a little disappointing
''If Lance Armstrong went to jail and Livestrong went away, that would be a huge setback in our war against cancer, right? Not exactly, because the famous nonprofit donates almost nothing to scientific research. Bill Gifford looks at where the money goes and finds a mix of fine ideas, millions of dollars aimed at “awareness,” and a few very blurry lines.''
Good reads regarding Livestrong's genuine contributions.
There are certainly less super human performances than previously. One interesting case was the Giro in 2010. Stage 16 was an uphill TT, the winning time was over 1 minute slower than the same stage in 2008. http://bikeintelligencer.com/2010/05/giro-ditalia-2010-stage-16-more-pain-and-loathing/
There's more to charity than simply donating to research. Additionally, throwing more money into researching doesn't necessarily translate into a cure/treatment being found sooner.
From my own reading, it sounds like Livestrong is more of a support organisation, spending its donation on resources to help those with cancer, promoting awareness etc. Just because it doesn't donate to research doesn't make it a worthless organisation, supporting those with cancer currently is a huge task.
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