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Ballan and the destructive power of suspicion

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OK: Ballan can't get his season back?
It's still May. Two thirds of the season to go.
His classics warm ups showed he had:
a) no team.
b) no form.

Time to bite the bullet and ride that little race they call the Tour, then the August classics, possibly the Vuelta, the Worlds, Paris-Tours, Lombardy..........
........
A thinly veiled Armstrong and the Destructive Power of the Truth, thread.
 
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I think you'll find the Larpe case - and the possible ramifications - were discussed here at length. However, somewhat ingenuous to claim that as a UCI success since it was an OCLAESP investigation that uncovered that affair.

Now, remind me, how are OCLAESP involved in the fight against doping? Oh yes, they're looking into the Astana blood transfusion equipment from 2009 TdF - independent of the UCI who, as ever, wanted to brush the whole thing under the carpet. Since Verbruggen tricked up a TUE for Brochard when he tested positive at the World's there has been clear evidence of the UCI protecting certain teams and riders and letting others go hang. Until there is an independent body to investigate doping allegations in the sport the system will always be deeply imperfect.
 
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Mellow Velo said:
OK: Ballan can't get his season back?
It's still May. Two thirds of the season to go.
His classics warm ups showed he had:
a) no team.
b) no form.

Time to bite the bullet and ride that little race they call the Tour, then the August classics, possibly the Vuelta, the Worlds, Paris-Tours, Lombardy..........
........
A thinly veiled Armstrong and the Destructive Power of the Truth, thread.

And here it goes again.

A gentle reminder that Armstrong is far from the only rider that has been recently accussed. Shall we detail the accussations that have not resulted in anything?

1. Ballan and his exoneration.

2. Basso = doped for suceeding.

3. Levi = doped.

4. Dave Z. = doped.

5. George Hincapie = doped.

6. Jim Ochowicz = organized doping.

7. Johan = organized doping.

8. UCI (and apparently the entire system) = taking bribes to cover up doping for 'one' cyclist but not others.

9. Allen Lim = organized doping.

10. Matt White = doping.

11. Michael Barry = doping.

12. CheChu = doping.

13. John Lelangue = organized doping.

14. Medical 'waste' from doping found in trash ... that belongs to Astana.

15. Austrian doping facility?

16. UCI favoritism vs. French doping agency?

17. Mike Rogers and omerta?

18. Race organizers turning a blind eye to doping (even as doping kills their sport)?

19. How 'clean' is Garmin?

20. Vino wins Liege, obviously doped?

And then there are the implications, if there is organzied doping under JB and JO, taht means both Contador and Evans are clearly doped. That means the 'winner' of the 2006 Tour, having ridden for BMC is also a doper.

When does enough become enough? When can we get sick and tired of baseless accussations and remind people that there is a standard and a system to prove or disprove doping?

This suspicion is killing the sport. Sponsors are scared off, Floyd's team parted ways and may not survive, and we now have active investogations on several of the sports top riders based on .... what exactly?

Someone has to win the races, even the grand tours, and I for one am sick of seeing accussations, accussations without evidence, follow every bit of success the sport has.

There is nothing productive or particularly constructive about questioning every achievement.
 
gree0232 said:
It will always be foxes guarding the hen house.

The question is, how do you make a system that polices doping that is transparent and accountable enough that people can have cnfidence in it?

It is very easy to point and say that a system is BS and biased, and far more difficult to make a system that actively catches dopers in an accountable and transparent manner.

This is not an easy task. If you go to far in one direction, you basically create a witch hunt where rights and real accountability are lost in a system of vendetta and accussation. Too far in the other direction and you accomplish nothing at all and dopers do as they want. Either extreme undermines the sport.

I would thus challenge the critics to come up with solutions that close the gap between doubt and accountability. If the answer is, "there is no solution here," then we should perhaps bear in mind that cycling is doing far more to clean up doping than any other sport.

By all accounts it appears to be working. By all accounts the peloton seems cleaner, and those that are doping and pedalling dope (no pun intended) are being caught.

Ergo, if that system is flawed and hopelessly biased, how do we close the gap?
Many are suggesting you're a troll, and maybe you are, but this post seems at least mostly genuine and thoughtful, so I'm responding.

The answer to the question of what to do is I don't know. I do know what not to do, however, and that is focus on making it look like the problem is solved or getting solved when it's not. For example, stop making bull manure assertions like, "By all accounts it appears to be working. By all accounts the peloton seems cleaner, and those that are doping and pedalling dope (no pun intended) are being caught." That's no different from what Sassi just said about Basso and Evans. Just curious, can you confirm or deny whether you have any income that comes from the sport of cycling? Because you sound just like those guys.

Statements like that are blatant hollow propaganda and smack of having much more concern for the image of cycling than with actually addressing the problem of doping.
 
gree0232 said:
And here it goes again.

A gentle reminder that Armstrong is far from the only rider that has been recently accussed. Shall we detail the accussations that have not resulted in anything?

1. Ballan and his exoneration.

2. Basso = doped for suceeding.

3. Levi = doped.

4. Dave Z. = doped.

5. George Hincapie = doped.

6. Jim Ochowicz = organized doping.

7. Johan = organized doping.

8. UCI (and apparently the entire system) = taking bribes to cover up doping for 'one' cyclist but not others.

9. Allen Lim = organized doping.

10. Matt White = doping.

11. Michael Barry = doping.

12. CheChu = doping.

13. John Lelangue = organized doping.

14. Medical 'waste' from doping found in trash ... that belongs to Astana.

15. Austrian doping facility?

16. UCI favoritism vs. French doping agency?

17. Mike Rogers and omerta?

18. Race organizers turning a blind eye to doping (even as doping kills their sport)?

19. How 'clean' is Garmin?

20. Vino wins Liege, obviously doped?

And then there are the implications, if there is organzied doping under JB and JO, taht means both Contador and Evans are clearly doped. That means the 'winner' of the 2006 Tour, having ridden for BMC is also a doper.

When does enough become enough? When can we get sick and tired of baseless accussations and remind people that there is a standard and a system to prove or disprove doping?

This suspicion is killing the sport. Sponsors are scared off, Floyd's team parted ways and may not survive, and we now have active investogations on several of the sports top riders based on .... what exactly?

Someone has to win the races, even the grand tours, and I for one am sick of seeing accussations, accussations without evidence, follow every bit of success the sport has.

There is nothing productive or particularly constructive about questioning every achievement.
Again, this sounds like something Armstrong or Bruyneel could have said, or even Landis a few weeks ago. It's a political diversionary tactic.

In your last sentence you note that questioning when the suspicions are unsubstantiated (presumably meaning not having incontrovertible proof) is neither productive nor constructive. That's a hollow objection.

Is there anything productive or particularly constructive about questioning any kind of potentially inappropriate behavior, be it illegal or "wrong" in some other sense?

As long as the fans aren't pointing that the doping is still obvious and rampant, no one "inside" is really going to care. This thing has to be ultimately fixed from the inside, but that's only going to happen from outside pressure, and that includes forums like this one.

And crowing about the success of the measures that were put in place to make it appear that the sport is getting cleaner, not to actually do anything, especially just days after Landis explains how these measures are a joke, does not help your credibility.
 
Wow!
Point out that the guy who's thread this is supposed to be about hasn't lost his season and you get a long winded diatribe defending LA and Bruyneel's right to cheat, without fear of repercussion.

The only baseless allegations come out of troll central.

Bye bye.
 
Alpe d'Huez said:
Not entirely so. There is a CO test, discussed many times here before. But it's not easy to implement.

I thought it was supposedly 'too expensive' (can't remember exactly who said that - someone high up I think) and also the human rights thing about making riders inhale CO (Ashenden said that? I really can't remember all these sources like some on here can, I just remember someone definitely saying them).
 
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Mellow Velo said:
Wow!
Point out that the guy who's thread this is supposed to be about hasn't lost his season and you get a long winded diatribe defending LA and Bruyneel's right to cheat, without fear of repercussion.

The only baseless allegations come out of troll central.

Bye bye.

Unbelieveable.

The defenders of 'truth' call anything and everything that disarees with them trolling or something else. The 20 bits of conspiracy dangled in front of them equates to 'defending JB and LA ability to cheat' rather than a discussion on the need to meet basic evidentiary standards before making accussations.

The more wild of Floyd's accussations remain largely undiscussed. Why? Because to discuss these is to acknowledge that there is a vast gulf between accussation and actual doping.

Alan Lim is a doper based on ....

JO is a organized doper based on ....

And these kinds of accussations are good for the sport how?

I do find it very curious that when another poster tries to introduce the topic of doping and other riders ensnared in accussation, it is the bashers that always return the issue to whether or not we can nail LA.

Let me lie a couple of truths on teh ground for you.

1. The is a system and there are standards that have to met before we can sanction a rider. If what you have cannot meet he basic encoded regulations and standards for a doping conviction, then the rider(s) will continue to ride.

2. I am an infantryman by trade. I know a thing or two about standards. And if a big, stupid, troll of a grint can walk through the wholes in your arguement, what do you think even a very bad lawyer is going to do those accussations?

We cannot convict a doper out of such subjective things such as:

Gee, he didn't look like was suffering enough therefore he is doped!

I have seen guys in full body armor in 140+ degree heat (and I know they were suffering) show no outward signs of stress. It is called grit, determination, and stoicism - and in my profession we tend to value those traits not find suspicion in them.

Imagine for a second if every soldier I saw not whining up a storm I cast suspicion on him and demanded he or she be tested for obvious dope? I don't think my superiors would find that amusing in the slightest.

Would your boss? Jenkins down the hall made too many sales today, test him for dope!

Of course, I am not saying lets apply standards equally and fairly, I am really saying let LA and JB dope????? :eek:

Or maybe I am just offering a word of caution to not let the witch hunt for LA and JB bring down the entire sport with it - the proverbial cutting off the nose to spite the face.
 
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Ninety5rpm said:
Again, this sounds like something Armstrong or Bruyneel could have said, or even Landis a few weeks ago. It's a political diversionary tactic.

In your last sentence you note that questioning when the suspicions are unsubstantiated (presumably meaning not having incontrovertible proof) is neither productive nor constructive. That's a hollow objection.

Is there anything productive or particularly constructive about questioning any kind of potentially inappropriate behavior, be it illegal or "wrong" in some other sense?

As long as the fans aren't pointing that the doping is still obvious and rampant, no one "inside" is really going to care. This thing has to be ultimately fixed from the inside, but that's only going to happen from outside pressure, and that includes forums like this one.

And crowing about the success of the measures that were put in place to make it appear that the sport is getting cleaner, not to actually do anything, especially just days after Landis explains how these measures are a joke, does not help your credibility.

OK then, what is the solution. If all the actions the 'system' has taken, from teh creation of WADA, the biological passport, the whereabouts system, the advanced in testing including a focus on new varients of EPO testing, and catching of riders left and right are not enough to bring some semblance of confidence in the system, then what is?

Do we need to a thread seconds after Basso wins a stage accussing him of doping instead? What is the point?
 

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Alpe d'Huez said:
I believe they weren't talking about Gree0232, but you.

Moose McKnuckles was refering to both of us: "I don't find it surprising that these trolls persist here."

That's why I went on to say that I did not think it was trolling of me to post a CN article on Oliver Catlin's remarks.

For what it's worth I don't think Catlin is a troll either. If he wanted to he should be allowed to post in the CN forums as well.
 
gree0232 said:
Really? What is a lie above?

There is no thread on this forum where Ballan being cleared, or the reasons for it, is being discussed. Curious that the militant omerta seems to have passed right over it.

Now let me share with you a story from my hiatus from this forum due to my involvement in a place most of you will never go: Iraq.

Most you have never heard of the Iraqi National Police, and most of you have never heard of its exploits. Those that have probably remember it as a bastigon of Death Squad violence. Few indeed know about the general, a man I was privilidged to work for, who took over the institution and truned it around in less than two years (while in almost daily combat).

One of the biggest problems we faced was that of suspicion and rumors used to discredit rivals. If a Battalion or Brigade Commander was successful, it was because he was being fed information from insurgents or something. Many times, these rumors took on a life of its own anvd very good commanders were removed with a chilling effect across the force.

The new Commanding General changed that. He created an independant agency that reported to him and him alone. When these rumors surfaced, he sent in the organization (think internal affairs), and if real proof was found the guy was removed - and sometimes charged. This had a couple of immediate effects:

1. The numbers of accussations went down. Those that remained proved to have some validity to them, and we were really able to target and remove leadership that either had ties to insurgents or were simply corrupt.

2. It suddenly became easier to evaluate people, and the quality of officers selected for command billets rose steadily. Those that were selected for Division Command were quite literally the cream of the crop.

The final upshot of this, when the Iraqi military went into Basarah teh Army collapsed. The National Police did not. In fact, they fough for three days alone, often being attacked by the very Iraqi Army equipment that had been left behind. Eventually, the Iraqi Army re-organized, and came back in with American support, but it was the demonstration of resolve by the National Police that shocked the insurgents and pulled the Army back into the fight.

That could not have happened had we taken solace in conspiracy and suspiciion rather than in facts and evidence.

I love cycling. There is no sport that so pushes the human body to the point that the strongest man wins. None.

So when I see the same corrupting influence that nearly brought an entire nation to its knees infecting our sport, I will stand up to it here just as I did there.

All I have seen on this forum is suspicion. And when confronted there seems to be no qualms about simply extending that suspicion to a poster none of you knows. THAT is a problem.

A doping violation must rest upon something more than, "the rider did not look like he was suffering enough! (Therefore he must be doped)!" None of the riders in the Giro have accussed Basso of doping this year, including those who lost minutes in his latest climb.

The sport cannot function with suspicion infecting everything.

Wait, what are insurgents again? Oh yeah, they're what you'd call "freedom fighters" if a massive super power invaded your country, whether or not you liked your ruler.
 
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I for one cannot believe anyone is responding to either the "I was in Vietnam...I mean Iraq surrounded by gooks...I mean towelheads who were corrupt" troll, or the man with multiple personalities (well, just one, but many names.) Neither is interested in discourse, they are interested in diluting the discussion and frustrating the regular members here. Both have been proven time and again to be liars. Iraqi man just got used and abused a couple of days ago. Seems he is not willing to revisit the scene of his humiliation, and instead posted a new thread for his inane drivel. Then BPC comes along with his "I really need thorazine" psychosis, and this thread has turned into a perfect storm in a cesspool. Ignore is your friend.
 
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gree0232 said:
Now let me share with you a story from .... Iraq. Most you have never heard of the Iraqi National Police, ....Those that have probably remember it as a bastigon of Death Squad violence. Few indeed know about the general....who took over the institution and truned it around in less than two years....One of the biggest problems we faced was that of suspicion and rumors used to discredit rivals....The new Commanding General changed that. He created an independant agency that reported to him and him alone. When these rumors surfaced, he sent in the organization (think internal affairs), and if real proof was found the guy was removed - and sometimes charged. This had a couple of immediate effects: 1. The numbers of accussations went down. Those that remained proved to have some validity to them, and we were really able to target and remove leadership that either had ties to insurgents or were simply corrupt.

The problem with your analogy is that cycling is still at the stage where no independent investigation agency exists. There a countless examples of pros or ex pros expressing a lack of faith that the anti doping systems are incorruptible. People like Paul Kimmage and Bernhard Kohl, to name but a few examples of many. How can you continue to argue that the system is working when the athletes themselves do not have confidence in it?

gree0232 said:
All I have seen on this forum is suspicion. And when confronted there seems to be no qualms about simply extending that suspicion to a poster none of you knows. THAT is a problem.

I neither like nor agree with the knee jerk accusation being leveled at you. However, in return, I think you are also underestimating and misjudging forum members. There have been some very detailed evidence based discussions in the clinic. Many who post here are aware of a large body of factual information which supports their view; information which you appear to be unaware of. If you wish to be heard here, I suggest you stop implying that the forum is just a collection of irrational scandal mongers. If you stop thinking it too, you might even start to ask some questions, and begin to understand what some of us are saying to you.....

gree0232 said:
The sport cannot function with suspicion infecting everything.

Why limit this observation to cycling? Society itself cannot function with suspicion infecting everything..........Do you understand now why I might chose to express a negative view, of an individual who I strongly suspect cynically abuses the 'good faith' trust within their community, for personal profit and self aggrandizement?
 
gree0232 said:
Really? What is a lie above?

There is no thread on this forum where Ballan being cleared, or the reasons for it, is being discussed. Curious that the militant omerta seems to have passed right over it.

Now let me share with you a story from my hiatus from this forum due to my involvement in a place most of you will never go: Iraq.

Most you have never heard of the Iraqi National Police, and most of you have never heard of its exploits. Those that have probably remember it as a bastigon of Death Squad violence. Few indeed know about the general, a man I was privilidged to work for, who took over the institution and truned it around in less than two years (while in almost daily combat).

One of the biggest problems we faced was that of suspicion and rumors used to discredit rivals. If a Battalion or Brigade Commander was successful, it was because he was being fed information from insurgents or something. Many times, these rumors took on a life of its own anvd very good commanders were removed with a chilling effect across the force.

The new Commanding General changed that. He created an independant agency that reported to him and him alone. When these rumors surfaced, he sent in the organization (think internal affairs), and if real proof was found the guy was removed - and sometimes charged. This had a couple of immediate effects:

1. The numbers of accussations went down. Those that remained proved to have some validity to them, and we were really able to target and remove leadership that either had ties to insurgents or were simply corrupt.

2. It suddenly became easier to evaluate people, and the quality of officers selected for command billets rose steadily. Those that were selected for Division Command were quite literally the cream of the crop.

The final upshot of this, when the Iraqi military went into Basarah teh Army collapsed. The National Police did not. In fact, they fough for three days alone, often being attacked by the very Iraqi Army equipment that had been left behind. Eventually, the Iraqi Army re-organized, and came back in with American support, but it was the demonstration of resolve by the National Police that shocked the insurgents and pulled the Army back into the fight.

That could not have happened had we taken solace in conspiracy and suspiciion rather than in facts and evidence.

I love cycling. There is no sport that so pushes the human body to the point that the strongest man wins. None.

So when I see the same corrupting influence that nearly brought an entire nation to its knees infecting our sport, I will stand up to it here just as I did there.

All I have seen on this forum is suspicion. And when confronted there seems to be no qualms about simply extending that suspicion to a poster none of you knows. THAT is a problem.

A doping violation must rest upon something more than, "the rider did not look like he was suffering enough! (Therefore he must be doped)!" None of the riders in the Giro have accussed Basso of doping this year, including those who lost minutes in his latest climb.

The sport cannot function with suspicion infecting everything.

Now I've read this story twice and I don't see how it relates to cycling? Other than informing us that you've been to Iraq.
 
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Hairy Wheels said:
Wait, what are insurgents again? Oh yeah, they're what you'd call "freedom fighters" if a massive super power invaded your country, whether or not you liked your ruler.

He was in Iraq like jackhammer/carboncrank raced Cat 3.
 
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Ninety5rpm said:


It's a good read, but you do have to read it carefully. I suppose you can come away with a more positive impression than I did. Just remember who pays his bills and what's most important to all those involved: that the dopers are actually caught by the program or the impression is created that if there were any dopers on the team they would be caught by the program.


Catlin (jr) says, "Many people in the sport of cycling were hoping the days had passed when we were constantly discussing doping. To have this microdosing talk come out and raise new questions about the sport is frustrating."

This translates as, "It is frustrating to have to talk about doping. We wish everyone would just let us get on with it. Why don't they just watch the racing and enjoy it."
 

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zapata said:
Now I've read this story twice and I don't see how it relates to cycling? Other than informing us that you've been to Iraq.

I think he's trying to say that rumour and suspicion could have doomed the Iraqi army. It was their worst enemy.

Bascially we are the Iraqi army and you are the terrorists....is what he is saying.
 

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this_is_edie said:
yawn.

hopefully, these 'posters' do not infect other threads.

What do you think of the OP's substantive point? Do you think he is right or wrong to highlight the Ballan case and warn people not to jump to conclusions without the facts?

And what about Oliver Catlin? Do you think he is right to say the passport is making progress?

Thanks.
 
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If Floyd can dope with impunity for many years, and figured out that IV EPO use meant he could reduce EPO detection time down to a handful of hours, AND build blood volume to make extracting blood less of an impact to the Reticulocyte count and performance, then the bio-passport is a bust.

IV EPO use, and no virtual chance to get caught, is still present. Unless a rider/doctor is just not very good at it, it can easily be gamed.

Biopassport = Fail

Looks good on paper, and sounds good in the media but still a failure.
 

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Colm.Murphy said:
If Floyd can dope with impunity for many years, and figured out that IV EPO use meant he could reduce EPO detection time down to a handful of hours, AND build blood volume to make extracting blood less of an impact to the Reticulocyte count and performance, then the bio-passport is a bust.

IV EPO use, and no virtual chance to get caught, is still present. Unless a rider/doctor is just not very good at it, it can easily be gamed.

Biopassport = Fail

Looks good on paper, and sounds good in the media but still a failure.

Catlin and even Michael Ashenden say the passport is very useful and getting better all the time.
CN ran a feature on it today that you may have missed:
http://www.cyclingnews.com/features...ullify-blood-passport-anti-doping-expert-says

Floyd never went up against the biopassport himself so it remains unclear just how successful he would be at beating the system. Ashenden says that Landis was over confident because he was running it very close to an early morning test even with injecting it straight into the blood. Indeed, Landis seemed to get away with this because he knew when the testers were coming. That's almost a different issue to the effectiveness of the passport itself.

It would be interesting to see some studies on the benefits of micro dosing. At the moment we only have the say so of Ashenden that it creates performance gains, but he admits this goes against conventional wisdom. I'd like to see the data on it because sometimes I think we can get carried away with this stuff and think it's a magic bullet. Old style EPO doses certainly did make a difference, of course, but that's not what we're talking about here.
 
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MarkGreen0 said:
Catlin and even Michael Ashenden say the passport is very useful and getting better all the time....troll bababable

It would be interesting to see some studies on the benefits of micro dosing. At the moment we only have the say so of Ashenden that it creates performance gains........troll garbage.........Old style EPO doses certainly did make a difference, of course, but that's not what we're talking about here.


Your attempts to deliberately confuse the discussion with incorrect information and multiple banned usernames would be funny if it wasn't so sad.

Catlin says the Biopassport "Took a hit"
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=127244621

The way you misconstrue how EPO is used confirms that you are a troll, or a genius. Microdoses of EPO are used not as a performance advantage but as a way to disguising the drop in new blood calls caused by transfusing a bag of blood.
 

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RaceRadio,

If you can't make your case without insulting people then you probably don't have a very good case. That's what my mother always told me.

Catlin says the Biopassport "Took a hit"

Yes? You're taking three words from an article. People can read the CN article for themselves and see the context of Catlin's remarks. Catlin says that the passport is very useful and making progress all the time. That's what I reported. I did not say that Catlin said the passport was full proof right now. Do you disagree with any of this?

Microdoses of EPO are used not as a performance advantage but as a way to disguising the drop in new blood calls caused by transfusing a bag of blood.

According to Michael Ashenden it is mainly used in the off season to aid with training. Maybe you are confusing (if I was you I would say deliberately) with its usage five years ago? I don't blame you because the time line issue has gotten confused here, partly thanks to the way Ashenden has addressed this matter in response to Landis' claims.