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Andrea Piccolo's EF contract terminated, HGH/Sleeping pills

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Yup. We've seen what happens more recently when they catch a big fish though.

But it is not a big deal. Only the little fish are doping. The big fish just have all that natural talent and good training to tear out 7 w/kg levels day after day.
Well, you see, doping must be a bottom-down phenomenon, instead of a top-down one. That way only the lesser talents need to dope to make up for their pathetic capacities. The real talents don't need to dope, because they know it carries them and none would dare seek an unlawfull advantage. I also know the sky isn't blue, but green with purple polka-dots and that the clouds are really flying elephants.
 
It was not a routine control as ITA , Italian police & anti-doping had him under investigation.
As we saw with Superman Lopez, for the top guys it would go via doctors to assistents to team assistents to riders.
And yet Andrea Piccolo is the one to investigate, not the superstars who smash records every day. No it's the Italians going after one of their own and all is right in the cycling cosmos again.
 
apparently he was found with 4 "medicines"



will be interesting to see what else he had on him, maybe this will finally reveal what everyone has been on the last 4 seasons that's made them go so fast.
Can't be what made them go so fast considering how slow he's gone the last two years.
 
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Apparently Piccolo had a VO2 max of 97, which is why Vaughters signed him (cit. Vaughters).

Also the "sleep" medication was clonazepam. I don't think I'd ever heard of clonazepam being described as a sleep medication – it's an anti anxiety drug. It doesn't so much make you sleep as totally sedate you.
 
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Also the "sleep" medication was clonazepam. I don't think I'd ever heard of clonazepam being described as a sleep medication – it's an anti anxiety drug. It doesn't so much make you sleep as totally sedate you.
Maybe it was to counteract something else he was taking that was keeping him jacked up all night. I don't think we've had the full list of "medications" he was caught with.
 
Apparently Piccolo had a VO2 max of 97, which is why Vaughters signed him (cit. Vaughters).

Also the "sleep" medication was clonazepam. I don't think I'd ever heard of clonazepam being described as a sleep medication – it's an anti anxiety drug. It doesn't so much make you sleep as totally sedate you.
It's an odd choice. It's a benzo, so perhaps he has a dependency on it. And perhaps the reason for taking it was more related to deep rooted anxiety ... or he has a seizure disorder 🤔
 
Maybe it was to counteract something else he was taking that was keeping him jacked up all night. I don't think we've had the full list of "medications" he was caught with.
I reckon you'd just take an actual sleeping pill for that, a benzo is anxiety/recreational/dependency. Using it against anxiety is quite a sledgehammer tactics, I can't imagine it provides any performance enhancement at all. It's not really anything for EF to get too worked up about, it's more of a concern than a telling off IMO.
 
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I see the sleeping pills has a red flag.

People only take sleeping pills if they have trouble sleeping regularly. Why would Piccolo hide from the team that he had trouble sleeping? Why would he take medication without telling anyone? He could have talked with the team doctor, why didn't he?

Let's not forget Luca Paollini had a cocaine and sleeping pill addiction, for example. I think it's normal for EF to be concerned about Piccolo's behaviour and to warn UCI about it.
 
In the hospital patients take clonazepam or another benzo all the time if they have severe anxiety and it hampers their sleep. It relaxes them and a side effect is making someone drowsy like an opioid. He could be taking it for that or due to a harder drug.
 
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Clonazepam absolutely is a sleeping pill for those who can't sleep due to severe anxiety. And it's definitely a sleeping pill if Piccolo was taking it to help him sleep. Of course we don't really know why he was taking it, but probably more along the lines of addiction and less performance enhancement.
Sorry, I more meant not a sleeping pill in the relieves from being physically worked up. It's an anti anxiety drug first and foremost, and I can't really see a situation in which it's masking a PED/another drug, if that makes sense. Definitely in the addiction category
 
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Nothing particularly new about using sleeping pills as a training aid is there?

I'm sure Tyler Hamilton talked about using them to cut weight - go out for a long training ride, come home chug a big bottle of fizzy water and sleeping pills and you can sleep for hours instead of noticing that you're starving hungry.

They're also symptomatic of other types of PED abuse - whether taking actual amphetamines to undertake harder training rides or just buckets of caffeine, you impair your ability to sleep normally.

A lot of this is perhaps legal but rather grey area.
 
Nothing particularly new about using sleeping pills as a training aid is there?

I'm sure Tyler Hamilton talked about using them to cut weight - go out for a long training ride, come home chug a big bottle of fizzy water and sleeping pills and you can sleep for hours instead of noticing that you're starving hungry.

They're also symptomatic of other types of PED abuse - whether taking actual amphetamines to undertake harder training rides or just buckets of caffeine, you impair your ability to sleep normally.

A lot of this is perhaps legal but rather grey area.
A lot of this is true; however, in that case if you have even a moderately competent physician you will be getting prescriptions for Z drugs or other medications. Benzos generally have a different purpose, and are highly addictive and therefore not really the best option for athletes just trying to sleep for the purposes mentioned.

They are still used by a large proportion of people for anxiety (unfortunately), and of course they are also abused.
 
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I believe a number of teams have systematically used young and low level riders as mules. It's less risky than having team staff doing it - as the latter are more likely to be targeted or stopped by authorities. I suspect Piccolo was moving a lot more product than the team needed and someone tipped off the Italian authorities.