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  #1  
Old 01-17-13, 09:33
mountainrman mountainrman is offline
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Default "Ridiculous Thread"? I am not so sure

I started a thread "spiked" questioning how easy it would be for malicious spectators to spike drinks or food to give riders a positive dope test.

The "tin tack" tour incident proves that malicious spectators are willing to destroy riders and a race.

I started a thread called "spiked" in the clinic on that basis - which was closed on the basis of being "ridiculous" I am not so sure it is.

This is not about Frank Scheck specifically, but that case is instructive of just how low the thresholds now are on prohibitive substances, and that makes the threat of spiking more real.

His blood concentration of xipamide was 100picograms per ml.

Do people understand how small that is?

A clinical dose of xipamide (indeed the typical amount of active ingredient in many typical pharma pills) is say 40 milligrams.

There are a BILLION picograms in every milligram.

So on the basis of 100 pg/ml - for ease of calculation an ENTIRE 10L blood stream would in total contain just ONE single microgramme.

That microgramme is just 1/40000 of a clinical dose.
So the entire content of Schecks blood was less than even the smallest drip from a dose dissolved in a L

Now for sure, not all that you take enters the blood stream, and the body metabolises all drugs, so concentrations are far lower than calculated by dissolving the dose in blood streams and then decrease with time. But it illustrates just how small a "positive" now is for some prohibited substances.

When riders tip a bottle over their heads, or take a sip, what is the chance of a few drips ending ingested? Or picking it up from a contaminated hand when eating?
I am not a clinical specialist, but it sounds possible to me because of the tiny concentrations.

So the thread in my view is not ridiculous and founded on two issues.
1/ Should we be testing for concentrations so low?
2/ If we are testing at that level, then there are a lot of ways it could be done maliciously - so how can they be prevented?
3/ Is it fair to enforce strict liability on riders to explain where it came from when concentrations are so low?

So should the thread have been closed?
What do others think?

Now for sure it attracted facetious replies - but that does not make the thread ridiculous. It makes the facetious replies ridiculous.

I PM d the mod concerned, no response as yet.

This is not the place to discuss the subject, only whether the subject is too ridiculous to warrant discussion.

Any views?

Last edited by mountainrman; 01-17-13 at 10:22.
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  #2  
Old 01-17-13, 12:27
mountainrman mountainrman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ebandit View Post
for what it's worth...............although i thought your question had merit it
did not warrant a seperate thread

further question could be made in the schleck thread

but rule is clear................there is no threshold for such products in an
athletes system

if found the athlete must prove where product came from or be sanctioned

subjects for the clinic
Thanks for replying.

The question was nothing really to do with Frank Schleck - I have no idea what went on his case.

I was only using his blood concentrations to show how very low the fail levels are for substances now. I think too low - which is why I put the idea of picograms per ml into a context.. I could have used the levels of clenbuterol in Contadors case instead.

The question is the potential for spectators (or others in the location of race hotels or locations) to spike drinks or food to give riders doping failures - and how very small such spiking would need to be to be effective - and how hard it is when there are so many people at these locations to give any proper security.

I think that could be a useful discussion.
Spectators have already proved they can be malicious.

Last edited by mountainrman; 01-17-13 at 12:30.
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  #3  
Old 01-17-13, 12:40
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Hey, personally I don't find this thread ridiculous. I agree with ebandit that it could have been included in the existing Frank Schleck thread, or in another thread that is called "Did Bruyneel frame Fränk Schleck?". A couple of months ago there were several articles about it in serious papers such as L'Equipe, so I think it is far from ridiculous. I also recall an interview with Gerdemann and Wegmann, where they said they didn't accept refreshments from spectators anymore. This is a genuine concern for some riders.

As you said this is not the place to respond to the actual question, but for lack of a better place I will do it anyway (this could then be moved to another thread, if such a thread were to be opened).

I did not know how little a picogram is, so thanks for illustrating that. I have long thought (since the Contador case) that, if I were a professional rider, I'd be paranoid. I suppose during the season you are somewhat safe because you often eat what the rest of your team eats, or what the team chef prepares. But during the off season, I would be scared to eat at a restaurant, from street vendors, even processed food from the supermarket ... You'd have to start your organic vegetable garden and only eat from that.
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Old 01-17-13, 13:37
mountainrman mountainrman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Christian View Post
Hey, personally I don't find this thread ridiculous. I agree with ebandit that it could have been included in the existing Frank Schleck thread, or in another thread that is called "Did Bruyneel frame Fränk Schleck?". A couple of months ago there were several articles about it in serious papers such as L'Equipe, so I think it is far from ridiculous. I also recall an interview with Gerdemann and Wegmann, where they said they didn't accept refreshments from spectators anymore. This is a genuine concern for some riders.

As you said this is not the place to respond to the actual question, but for lack of a better place I will do it anyway (this could then be moved to another thread, if such a thread were to be opened).

I did not know how little a picogram is, so thanks for illustrating that. I have long thought (since the Contador case) that, if I were a professional rider, I'd be paranoid. I suppose during the season you are somewhat safe because you often eat what the rest of your team eats, or what the team chef prepares. But during the off season, I would be scared to eat at a restaurant, from street vendors, even processed food from the supermarket ... You'd have to start your organic vegetable garden and only eat from that.
Thanks - I do not think many who read about these failures realise quite how small the levels they can now detect are.
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Old 01-17-13, 23:33
Mad Elephant Man Mad Elephant Man is offline
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It seems to be a reasonable subject for a thread.

For instance, if I took a bucket filled with water and some doping product
and threw it over a rider might they test positive? Absorption through the skin? accidentally swallowing some of it?
How would the rider prove that he had not taken the drug? Would he believed, or would people think it was just a convenient excuse?

I see no reason for there not to be a thread discussing these things, although it might give someone ideas.
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Old 01-18-13, 13:03
mountainrman mountainrman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad Elephant Man View Post
It seems to be a reasonable subject for a thread.

For instance, if I took a bucket filled with water and some doping product
and threw it over a rider might they test positive? Absorption through the skin? accidentally swallowing some of it?
How would the rider prove that he had not taken the drug? Would he believed, or would people think it was just a convenient excuse?

I see no reason for there not to be a thread discussing these things, although it might give someone ideas.
Valid Question. It might not even need absorption. If you took that bucket or bottle and threw it over the back of their jerseys - which spectators frequently do on hot days on the climbs: then every time they reach for a gel or a bar, potentially their gloves and the wrappers would be wet and contaminated with a few drops potentially ingested when they bite on the wet gel or a wet bar, and by the calculation above, a few drops might be enough to test positive at the level of picograms per ml. Thats what worries me and why I thought it might make a discussion.

Also - the clinic is long on lance threads - I thought it might make a breath of fresh air to talk about something else for a change.

Anyway - this is not the place to discuss it - only whether the topic is sensible.
Thanks for your support.

Last edited by mountainrman; 01-18-13 at 13:06.
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  #7  
Old 01-19-13, 01:42
TheGame TheGame is offline
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Perfectly reasonable subject for a thread, and the issue of riders accepting drinks from roadside has long been contentious.

Very few riders now risk it unless its a sealed can of coke or something. If they take water they use it just for cooling down (of course that leaves you open to the ridiculous idea from a French rider last year that she tested positive for EPO because of rainwater).

But perfectly sensible thread.
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Old 01-22-13, 01:58
Mad Elephant Man Mad Elephant Man is offline
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Moderators, if I start a thread on this topic will it be allowed to exist?
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Old 01-23-13, 00:26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad Elephant Man View Post
Moderators, if I start a thread on this topic will it be allowed to exist?
Hi, yes it would. For the record, the thread was not deleted for its original content. I agree that there is merit to discuss this. I was the mod that deleted the thread because, in my opinion it was started with an objective by the OP in mind. It was a subsequent post by the OP on the thread that I judged was ridiculous and an obvious self troll thread. So closure. But was just my call at the time. If you prefer I can open up the original thread if the other Mods agree to see what was deleted.
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Old 01-24-13, 08:56
Mad Elephant Man Mad Elephant Man is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ferryman View Post
Hi, yes it would. For the record, the thread was not deleted for its original content. I agree that there is merit to discuss this. I was the mod that deleted the thread because, in my opinion it was started with an objective by the OP in mind. It was a subsequent post by the OP on the thread that I judged was ridiculous and an obvious self troll thread. So closure. But was just my call at the time. If you prefer I can open up the original thread if the other Mods agree to see what was deleted.
Thank you for the answer.
I may well start a thread on this issue in the next few days. Too tired to think enough to do it right now.
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