thehog wrote:...When Armstrong's 2010 data comes out from around his Flanders ride guys like Bertagnolli will just shake their head in amazement. Talk about Star-Chambers!
i'm genuinely conflicted when it comes to the biopass and alleged-corruption in the UCI. I know I get a lot of hate still from mostly anonymous/unnamed people who don't like me or what I've done (even though I doubt they've ever met me), but I really am in a very unique position that is different than most of the sport's stakeholders (much of this might have to do with the fact that I'm not earning any significant income from the sport right now). It's one with an almost-360-degree viewpoint (lol - no doubt made possible in part by all of the interaction I have w/ you very sophisticated fans of the sport - and some not-so-sophisticated ones).
So regarding something like biopassport, the UCI, LA and anti-doping, I am conflicted because I know from direct conversations w/ those at the highest level of anti-doping (including perhaps the most well-known to have sat on the biopass committee) that they were not permitted to declare/deem "suspicious"/warranting official action certain riders' passport data, but when they could rule they did and that feedback wasn't ignored (but still the white whale was off-limits).
The UCI does do more than any other international federation to fight doping, and they are at the forefront scientifically and logistically such that if someone tried to implement this system and carry-out these controls (w/ attendant penalties) in a sport where there was actual real money involved, they'd get whacked and end-up sleeping with the fishes.
And yet there's the allegation that LA was able to buy the UCI's help in covering-up a positive, something that I unfortunately also know from personal experience could be possible.
Yet I agree with McQuaid - who was willing to admit publicly on the record that the things Landis alleged "could've happened under his predecessor's watch b/c it was a different time" (paraphrasing) - that the culture of doping in pro cycling is under genuine attack and that doping has shifted from the macro level of the team down to the mico (dose! lol) level of the rider, who is often having to act w/o the assistance or support of the DS - unlike during 1991-2010.
Yet the reward from doping at the top level is still huge and the chances of being caught in an analytic trap alone are still small for those super-elites who can afford the sophisticated, individualized doping program provided by alchemists like Ferrari and Cecchini.
In the end, the bio passport is a semi-effective deterrent that can still be manipulated and gamed by those with the resources to do so, which means that the cases likely to come directly from it will be low-level riders. However, the passport has provided actionable intelligence, indicating suspicious activity that's led to targeted testing that's snared at least 3x as many riders as have come "directly" from the bio passport. But when certain riders' bio passports have basically been "diplomatic" and protected them from further scrutiny/threat of sanctions, it compromises the integrity of the entire program.
Yet at least cycling is doing something that is still unimaginable in other sports. And it results in guys like CVV claiming that they should be trusted when they say cycling is definitively cleaner than it was before. Yet they're not willing to admit to what they were doing before, let alone share any details, so how - in light of all the other bad signs - are we supposed to sit back quietly and say, "ok, we trust you."?
And yet complaining in the press that there's still doping in cycling, that the bio passport isn't as effective as it could be, that only smaller fish get caught, blah blah blah...that doesn't necessarily help the situation.