Doping in XC skiing - Page 68 - Cyclingnews Forum

Go Back   Cyclingnews Forum > Road > The Clinic

The Clinic The Clinic is the only place on Cyclingnews where you can discuss doping-related issues. Ask questions, discuss positives or improvements to procedures.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #671  
Old 12-02-12, 00:14
maltiv maltiv is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 5,217
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tubeless View Post
And these were the reasons given for Lance's dominance at his 7 tour wins:

1. Unique physiology, top junior racer, high natural VO2Max
2. Best support system around, singular focus on winning TdF
3. Countless hours in the wind tunnel, superior riding position
4. Altitude training in the rockies, alps, pyrenees
5. Best training program designed by famous coach Chris Carmichael
Indeed, the "excuses" are quite similar. But to be fair, some of the competitive advantage Norwegians have is, in difference to Armstrong, actually real. The budget of the Norwegian team is more or less 10 times as high as anyone else's. It's as if Team Sky were competing against continental teams...

Still, that shouldn't be nearly enough to even out the difference between a clean athlete and a guy on EPO, at least not in the 90's. But nowadays, with primarily micro-doses being used, who knows. I also don't think Northug's is dominating to a ridiculous degree, he clearly has his limits.

Bjørgen has no competition really, there are about 15 girls who actually take the sport seriously and 6 of them are from Norway. The others are either not talented enough, or ridiculously bad technically (Kowalczyk). So I'm not really sure if she really is that good or if everyone else just sucks.
Reply With Quote
  #672  
Old 12-02-12, 14:44
Nicko. Nicko. is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 57
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tubeless View Post
It seems you're (intentionally) misunderstanding my point. I am simply saying that it's patently obvious to most that the Norwegians doped along with all the other top nations during the 1990's when there was no EPO test and no Hb limits in place. Norwegians have countered that no, their success was due to superior stone grinding and waxing and that can explain how they were able to keep up with EPO-doped Russians, Finns, Italians and Kazakhstanis from circa 1994 to 2000.

Let's take the 1994 Lillehammer World Champs as an example, and use the 30 km freestyle event so that kick wax considerations don't give anyone an excuse to dismiss the conclusions:

http://www.fis-ski.com/uk/604/610.ht...=CC&raceid=457

The nearly 4-minute margin from 1st to the possibly first clean athlete in 12th place is frankly eye-catching - more than 5%. Top 2 are Norwegians and places 3-7 and 9-11 are known dopers. Superior skis? Or superior "preparation" and great skis?

...snip...
I tend to agree with this.
Just how bad was the era when "the greatest of them all" was great? And how great must he have been to be so successful in that era?

Here's a simple medal count for "the greatest" compared to the whole male Swedish XC national team, with some pertinent events time-stamped:


BTW1, the medals for Sweden in 93 and 98 came in the least VO2max-correlated event, the 50k. And in 98 there was a huge weather/starting order correlation.

BTW2, Sweden seems to make improvements the year after a major anti-doping advancement. For one year. Go figure.
Reply With Quote
  #673  
Old 12-02-12, 14:57
Cloxxki Cloxxki is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 1,937
Default

Normally, the fastest biathlete can match and beat the fast XC specialists in skating. Martin Fourcade was no-where close recently in the XC WC 15km. Interesting or coincidence? He did win at the next biathlon WC.

I can't get over the relative improvement by the American ski girls. It's more than a few percent. More than a boost of confidence. More than an added year of experience. More than a new training method. More than all combined.

Some interesting changes between countries year-on-year so far. Russian men outstanding, women much less so.
Reply With Quote
  #674  
Old 12-02-12, 15:13
Pazuzu Pazuzu is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 256
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicko. View Post
I tend to agree with this.
Just how bad was the era when "the greatest of them all" was great? And how great must he have been to be so successful in that era?
Maybe I'm naive, but I tend to belive Daehlie, Alsgaard & the rest were able to be successful skiing paniagua. Through better ski prep, superior technique, smart altitude training, and use of 'altitude tents' (which was allowable) - they were able to compete successfully against their doped competitors.

Keep in mind Tyler Hamilton stated that in the EPO era it was still possible for clean riders to beat doped riders in one day classic events. But it was the grand tours - day after day of grinding it out - that it was impossible for a clean rider to beat his doped competitors. Back in the 90s then there was no 'Tour de Ski' as there is now.
__________________
"if anybody is the deserving winner of those seven tours, it's Ferrari." - Neal Rogers

Last edited by Pazuzu; 12-02-12 at 15:41.
Reply With Quote
  #675  
Old 12-02-12, 22:45
Tubeless's Avatar
Tubeless Tubeless is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 382
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pazuzu View Post
Maybe I'm naive, but I tend to belive Daehlie, Alsgaard & the rest were able to be successful skiing paniagua. Through better ski prep, superior technique, smart altitude training, and use of 'altitude tents' (which was allowable) - they were able to compete successfully against their doped competitors.

Keep in mind Tyler Hamilton stated that in the EPO era it was still possible for clean riders to beat doped riders in one day classic events. But it was the grand tours - day after day of grinding it out - that it was impossible for a clean rider to beat his doped competitors. Back in the 90s then there was no 'Tour de Ski' as there is now.
In cycling, team tactics, drafting and flat courses allow riders who may not have the highest V02Max to win. Mike Cavendish and Thor Hushovd are both world champions, yet get dropped from the lead group on all mountain stages.

Cross-country skiing places a higher demand on V02Max than other sports due to the use of both arms & legs - and the time-trial (interval start) format used in the 1990's meant you had to go 100% from the get-go. The easiest way to get your V02Max up? More red blood cells. Easiest way to do that? EPO.

Altitude tents are still allowed and the latest research suggests it will yield only minimal benefits - and has several drawbacks: sleep / rest is affected and short stays in altitude or altitude tents will actually lower performance as the body's first reaction is to increase Hb by decreasing plasma. To raise your blood values significantly enough to make a difference in performance requires a permanent stay of 3 weeks or more in altitude.
Reply With Quote
  #676  
Old 12-02-12, 23:13
Tubeless's Avatar
Tubeless Tubeless is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 382
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cloxxki View Post
Normally, the fastest biathlete can match and beat the fast XC specialists in skating. Martin Fourcade was no-where close recently in the XC WC 15km. Interesting or coincidence? He did win at the next biathlon WC.

I can't get over the relative improvement by the American ski girls. It's more than a few percent. More than a boost of confidence. More than an added year of experience. More than a new training method. More than all combined.

Some interesting changes between countries year-on-year so far. Russian men outstanding, women much less so.
There are only a few biathlon skiers who've won world cups in cross-country skiing - Ole Einar Bjorndalen, Lars Berger and Ronny Hafsaas, and each just once despite numerous attempts (all are Norwegians).

The American women are indeed the one big surprise this year - although Kikkan Randall has been up there before. Jessie Diggins had good results last year. Liz Stephen has been in the top 20 before. Holly Brooks has held promise for years but has had some injuries and illnesses. I am always a skeptic for unusual performances, but the American women are not beating everyone else and have demonstrated talent before - so it's plausible their success is achieved clean.

The Russians are a different case. They had 5 skiers in the top 10 for the overall in Kuusamo mini-tour. Too good to be achieved clean in the much more competitive men's division. We know Russians are EPO experts and it's educated speculation to suggest that they had been micro-dosing for the last couple of weeks leading to the Gallivare & Kuusamo world cups - it's easy to bring supplies across the border from Russia without much risk to get caught. I'd predict entirely different set of skiers to be on top at the Canadian world cups coming up next.
Reply With Quote
  #677  
Old 12-02-12, 23:13
Ferminal Ferminal is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 16,503
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pazuzu View Post
Maybe I'm naive, but I tend to belive Daehlie, Alsgaard & the rest were able to be successful skiing paniagua. Through better ski prep, superior technique, smart altitude training, and use of 'altitude tents' (which was allowable) - they were able to compete successfully against their doped competitors.

Keep in mind Tyler Hamilton stated that in the EPO era it was still possible for clean riders to beat doped riders in one day classic events. But it was the grand tours - day after day of grinding it out - that it was impossible for a clean rider to beat his doped competitors. Back in the 90s then there was no 'Tour de Ski' as there is now.
Maybe, most monument winners lists look as disgraced as GTs. Tactics are more of a factor though so you can get lucky and win one.
Reply With Quote
  #678  
Old 12-03-12, 01:51
python's Avatar
python python is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 4,584
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pazuzu View Post
Maybe I'm naive, but I tend to belive Daehlie, Alsgaard & the rest were able to be successful skiing paniagua. Through better ski prep, superior technique, smart altitude training, and use of 'altitude tents' (which was allowable) - they were able to compete successfully against their doped competitors.
i posted earlier in the thread about the ski prep and such. it was a genuine inquiry of a scientist who happened to be a life-long xc fan and, in fact, be very competitive at that. to spare you digging, i don't find those factors you listed unrealistic. that said, i find them unlikely affecting the racing outcomes at the highest level for nearly a decade time after time.

at the level we are talking about, as mentioned so many times by so many smart people - one can not keep a consistently winning ski prep/waxing, training, smart/unique technique (whatever) secret for a decade. no way.

Quote:
Keep in mind Tyler Hamilton stated that in the EPO era it was still possible for clean riders to beat doped riders in one day classic events.
i liked his book and i read some passages twice...does not mean he should be taken uncritically.

for example, to directly contradict your point, tyler himself described in detail how he he transfused a full unit of packed blood cells for a special one-day race... and he happened to win it.

blood doping in the xc skiing has at least equal, if not larger, performance-enhancing effect.

i am on the record of being very circumspect and reserved when others accused norges of outright cheating, but let's not be silly when looking at the bigger picture.
__________________
I don't f***ing care. It's his problem not mine--Bernard Hinault
Reply With Quote
  #679  
Old 12-03-12, 02:53
blackcat's Avatar
blackcat blackcat is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 7,875
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by python View Post
at the level we are talking about, as mentioned so many times by so many smart people - one can not keep a consistently winning ski prep/waxing, training, smart/unique technique (whatever) secret for a decade. no way.
the free market equilibrium, if one has the elixir, or some device for improving the performance, the market (competition) seeks to ameliorate/nullify via adoption of said technique.

this tends to destroy the justifications from Tour winning cyclists, speaking to the press on their avenues to performance improvement, relative to their competition.

if it is a performance advantage, one has to keep shtum. But like Python says, chances these are hidden for a decade, few, minute, not realistic.

chances are the leader of the pack are adopting the techniques of the pack. statistics and social psychology would assert so. Plus, like my sig says, all science is but a rounding error, to another sub-domain of science, pharmacology.
__________________
I am the Cobra
August Rodin plagiarised le Poseur on The COBRA!. The cobra is not happy in the third person.
Reply With Quote
  #680  
Old 12-03-12, 10:29
Velo1ticker Velo1ticker is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 60
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tubeless View Post
And these were the reasons given for Lance's dominance at his 7 tour wins:

1. Unique physiology, top junior racer, high natural VO2Max
2. Best support system around, singular focus on winning TdF
3. Countless hours in the wind tunnel, superior riding position
4. Altitude training in the rockies, alps, pyrenees
5. Best training program designed by famous coach Chris Carmichael

And these unique advantages that were only available to Lance gave him the edge he needed to beat everyone else in top 10 in the mountains and time trials - even though each and every rival was doped to the max with EPO, HgH, Testosterone and blood transfusions.

Have you read Tyler's book? EPO alone was known to give you an advantage of up to 5-7% in actual time improvement on the mountains.

Cycling has started to face its dark past with an admission that things weren't quite what it seemed from circa 1992 to 2006. It's sad to see that cross-country skiing in a certain Scandinavian country is still in total denial.

Today's situation is different and I am willing to believe that world cup races are being won clean. There's still doping happening, but the better testing and monitoring and the Hb limit enforcement is keeping things more in check. This was not the case during the wild 1990's.
It didn't start with EPO. Finns, Russians and later on the Italians had a blood doping program up and running for two decades. Why don’t you put money a TdF winner riding on off-road tires, some friction – no problem . Next you aim to win F1 with a Skoda Octavia too – a car is a car.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 00:11.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.