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I do not seek to change anything with your various (very interesting) arguments, but I did want to talk a little about the incubation period with bio-passport investigations.

We can usually expect an investigation to be announced based on data from the previous one or two seasons.


Barredo reported in 2012; data in question 2009-2011
Bertagnolli reported in 2012; data in question 2009-2011
- yet -
Serrano reported in 2009; data in question 2008

The turnaround time for early bio-passport investigations was much shorter than it is today. One season of history at the most. Now it is always two.

What I recall is that the passport was used to target testing in the beginning. Bosisio and Serrano were caught this way.

However, that sort of tie-in seemed to fizzle out quite quickly, perhaps because B and S were easier targets who returned the kind of fluctuating values that enabled analysts to guess at a regular doping timetable and target the tests. I think Astarloa was also on this path but his own team seems to have gotten cold feet and rumbled him.

Returning to the data itself, I record the incident using the date of the announcement but I list the individual's team wherever possible as it was during the sample period. In part because it is unfair to link what a guy like Barredo did at QuickStep with what he may or may not have done at Rabobank (which was not much, on the evidence of his results ;)), but also because one has to allow for the possibility that regimes change.

So if you're drawing conclusions from data where time is one of the axes, you might prefer to stack the alleged doping-related activity against earlier seasons rather than the season in which the incident was reported.