Cycling - At least it's not distance running

Mar 4, 2010
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I google translated some very damning articles about the doping situation in distance running.

As a test, and demonstrate the need for implementation in the athletics of the biological passport, a mechanism already used in cycling and takes into account the usual hematologic a sportsman over the years for possible referrals due doping, a group of scientists from the anti-doping laboratory in Lausanne and the IAAF, among which is the Spanish physician Juan Manuel Alonso, have published a study using the basis of 7,289 blood samples from 2001 to 2737 athletes from around the world, most of them joggers.

His conclusion is spectacular: 14% of the samples are suspected of blood doping (use of EPO or autologous) if the formula is applied to the passport, which includes the relationship between hematocrit, hemoglobin and reticulocytes.

This fact, stated by the authors as a major argument for starting the passport serves, however, reveal that the IAAF was aware for years that there were a number of athletes who are not cheaters punished.

"The study raises more questions than it answers. Shows that during the last decade, the IAAF knew what athletes showed abnormal hematologic results," says Australian scientist Michael Ashenden, one of the world's greatest experts on blood doping, "is sad that a federation with much power as the IAAF has chosen so far not punish such cases while a smaller, such as ICU, assume the legal risk to test the passport before the courts. Anyway, better late than never. " Recently, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) gave a big boost to the passport as an indirect method of drug testing to punish the Italian cyclists Pietro Caucchioli and Franco Pellizotti.

Another finding of the study, published in the journal Clinical Chemistry, is the great heterogeneity of results by geographic region of the athletes. There is a country where 48% of the samples are suspect, another 39%, another 23% ... Although the study clearly anonymous, does not reveal the names of countries, extrapolating the number of positive cases of doping in recent years, it can be concluded without error that are Russia, Morocco, France and Spain the most polluted, as well as Operation Greyhound has revealed.

"If we accept everything he says the study, 20% of those 2,737 athletes could be punished. But, being more conservative, we would talk about 100 world class. Assuming that half are still competing, speak of 50 possible cases doping, "says Ashenden, who, apart from big supporter of the passport, is one of the UCI experts to analyze the data," the implications of this issue are enormous not only for what they pose to the track itself but also by the unprecedented legal burden would in court sports. "
http://elpais.com/diario/2011/04/03/deportes/1301781615_850215.html

From 2006:

Traces of doping in 23 athletes during the European Championships in Sweden

The Swedish anti-doping authorities suspect were at least 23 of the participants in the just-Athletics Championships in Gothenburg to have been doped.

Analyses of hemoglobin content in blood samples from the 23 European championship participants have anti-doping authorities with a clear scientific indications that they had doped during the competition in Gothenburg.

"We took blood samples from a total of 151, EM-participants. 23 of them exceeded the international athletics federation agreed levels, suggesting that they had taken EPO or blood doping, "said the Swedish anti-doping chief Bengt Eriksson.
http://politiken.dk/sport/ECE165669/spor-af-doping-hos-23-atleter-under-em-i-sverige/

Professor Bengt Saltin commented on the results:
"It is approaching what we saw in cycling and XC skiing in the 90's".
http://www.svt.se/2.21059/1.684931/friidrotten_lika_illa_som_cykel?page2396163=1

"Cycling, XC skiing and biathlon use blood profiling, which the IAAF has not yet introduced. If you can't catch a runner with the EPO-test, it's a carte-blanche, Saltin concludes."
http://www.aftonbladet.se/sportbladet/friidrott/article11466511.ab

Saltin accuses Kenyans of doping

The Kenyan runners is first class on long haul, but perhaps there is a very special reason.

The Swedish physiology professor Bengt Saltin, who for nearly 40 years has worked in Denmark and was the first president of the Anti Doping Denmark, said that the Kenyans are using illegal methods.

In the TV show "Sportschau" on the German television channel ARD gave Saltin Saturday expressed his suspicions to the beautiful times that runners from Kenya have been in recent years.

- We have noticed how Kenya's blood values ​​during the period 2008 to 2010 have been much higher than in previous years, when they race in Europe.

- Such a phenomenon we have not seen before. It is beyond any doubt for me that there is some kind of blood manipulation, says Saltin according to the German news agency DPA.

The International Association of Athletics Federations IAAF has not made similar observations, but it is perhaps also with the fact that there will not be performed Doping tests in Kenya.

Thus one can not detect if a runner instance are doped with EPO, and it admits the Swiss Gabriel Dollé, who is the IAAF's medical director.

- It has not been possible to bring about the necessary conditions, says Dollé referring to the fact that there are strict requirements for transporting and storing doping samples that you can not live up to in many African countries including Kenya.
http://www.dr.dk/Sporten/Oevrig_sport/2012/05/19/0519202835.htm

Q: Do you think that athletics should introduce individual blood passports?

Professor Bengt Saltin: - Absolutely. But the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) does not approve the method. They see a problem with it because there are many ethnic groups represented in athletics and you do not know if certain groups have naturally higher Hb values ​​than Europeans. But they could perform the required work reasonably fast if the will existed. There are probably many people who want to, but the board is not active. If they set aside a few million, they could make a good survey and thus produce reasonable Hb-values​​.

Q: Why not more blood instead of urine tests?

A: - It would really be needed, but the International Association of Athletics Federations is hopelessly opposed to blood tests. There are also
religious groups in athletics that are opposed to blood testing.
http://www.google.se/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=mikrodoser+av+epo+bakom+&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CEcQFjAA&url=http://h24-files.s3.amazonaws.com/21810/20810-fv7gn.pdf&ei=snAlUP_mMqnc4QTV_ICABg&usg=AFQjCNG8wwHpGUmjGyINwsg_8H_Kp_x0RA&cad=rja

Athletics coach Stefan Olsson (2012):
"I feel like we could step on the gas pedal, particularly in the fight against blood doping."

He believes that athletics is far behind XC skiing in the case of blood profiling, which should reveal high blood values.

"Yes, in skiing, one can be prevented from participating when the values ​​are abnormal, but athletics is not even close to it. It seems like they are still testing merely to build up these blood banks and not to catch anyone. Here, something must be done, I think."
http://www.aftonbladet.se/sportbladet/os2012/article15222624.ab
 
Oct 29, 2009
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Blimey, cycling is bad but track and field is a joke. At least we can say that cycling is trying and is no longer in full denial mode. We have made some big strides towards a more credible sport since the 90's. Distance running seems to have little inclination to follow the same path. A shame the general public dont see it for what it really is. :(
 
Mar 4, 2010
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Swedish marathon runner, Isabellah Andersson, believes doping is widespread.

Isabellah was awarded her European Championship bronze medal from 2010 last month, after miss gold and miss silver were stripped of their medals.

- I get angry and happy at the same time. Glad I finally got the bronze, but bitter because they can not have a better system so that everyone competes clean.

And for Isabellah Andersson, it becomes increasingly difficult to enjoy her sport.

- It's the same now with the Olympics, you do not know who's clean and who is not.

Do you think you will meet doped runners in the Olympics?

- Yes, I think there are many. If it happened in a European Championship, why not the Olympic Games?

What's it like to have that feeling before the Olympics?

- I will try not to think about the others, because it bothers me a great deal. If I think about it too much, I don't want to run anymore. If everyone is doped all the time, why should I keep running?

It feels pointless?

- Yes, that's exactly how I feel.

But can these cases thus shorten your career?

- I do not know, I have not decided yet. I'll just do my thing and run as long as I have the will. If I don't feel good, then I'll quit, that's the way it is. It's not fun to compete with those who use doping.

Isabellah finished 18th in the olympic marathon, 4.29 behind the winner.

- The time was okay, but not a good result. And more than four minutes after the winner is not good either. But I gave it all and could do no more.

- I can not say that everyone in front of me is doped, but there has been a lot of it recently. It is sad when this is the case.

In the European Championships two years ago, she finished fifth, but both the number one and number two in the race were subsequently disqualified for doping: Zivile Balciunaite, Lithuania, and Nailja Yulamanova, Russia.

- I never got the chance to celebrate with a Swedish flag. It's not fun to get a medal in the mail, she says.

Isabellah and her husband and coach Lars Andersson are both convinced that several runners in the Olympic marathon is doped.

- Of course. But I do not know how many. Let us wait and see. You never know what could happen. But there wont be a medal this time, when I came in eighteenth place. There were too many girls before me.

- The testing should be much more stringent. At least once a month.

 
Top quality stuff here tt. Though i wonder, why havent world records gone down significantly in many of these distances, especially marathon, considering in cycling we saw Alpe times for example collapse down to 37 minutes.
 
Apr 20, 2009
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The Hitch said:
Top quality stuff here tt. Though i wonder, why havent world records gone down significantly in many of these distances, especially marathon, considering in cycling we saw Alpe times for example collapse down to 37 minutes.
That's an interesting point. The men's marathon shows no precipitous decline. On the women's side, however, let's just surmise that modern doping started in the mid-1980's. (was the first version of EPO available then?).

In the women's case, the record has fallen by 9 minutes, which is about 8% by my calculation.

The times on Alpe D'Huez fell about the same iirc.

But it is very odd that no similar fall shows up in men's marathons. The women's marathon fall could very likely be due to an increase participation in sport by women - and by women from Kenya, Ethopia etc...specifically.
 
May 13, 2011
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Likely because running a marathon is a ***** for the body. There is more than just aerobic capacity at work - there is the beautiful, tortuous feeling of 35 km on the legs and 7 more to go with millions of muscle tears aching and calling out for relief. Something that can't be relieved while running, but only by training more distance. Paradoxically the pounding gets harder the faster one runs, the easier the slower.

That said, I've seen a Kenyan win marathons two weeks a row :(
 
Apr 20, 2009
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Random Direction said:
Likely because running a marathon is a ***** for the body. There is more than just aerobic capacity at work - there is the beautiful, tortuous feeling of 35 km on the legs and 7 more to go with millions of muscle tears aching and calling out for relief. Something that can't be relieved while running, but only by training more distance. Paradoxically the pounding gets harder the faster one runs, the easier the slower.

That said, I've seen a Kenyan win marathons two weeks a row :(
As a marathoner, I could not agree more about the tortuous feeling etc...but is that significantly different than a 275KM Tour / Giro stage with several thousand feet of climbing? I honestly don't know the answer to that.
 
Jul 8, 2012
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eleven said:
As a marathoner, I could not agree more about the tortuous feeling etc...but is that significantly different than a 275KM Tour / Giro stage with several thousand feet of climbing? I honestly don't know the answer to that.
As a cyclist I can say it is a huge difference. Cycling is painfull, but mostly internally generated. Yes, you re in pain everywhere, but as barring a crash it is a no impact sport I can easily imagin ethe damage to your muscles in the legs would be entirely different from marathon running.
 
Jun 15, 2009
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The Hitch said:
Top quality stuff here tt. Though i wonder, why havent world records gone down significantly in many of these distances, especially marathon, considering in cycling we saw Alpe times for example collapse down to 37 minutes.
Easy answer: The equipment improved more in cycling than in running. It´s just different when you can cut the weight by kilos with lighter bikes, than when you just can reduce some grams with lighter shoes. That said, and the women record in marathon improved the same amount as Alpe-Times (you mentioned 9%), it basically means marathon is worse than cycling. Hope you feel better now. :D
 
May 19, 2010
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The best marathon runners used to have a long progress behind them, often from mid to long distance track running and cross country running before starting to run half marathons and marathons at a quite mature age. I 2011 the mens WR was set by a 26 year old. The fourth best time was set by a 21 year old this year. If they keep on improving till they are at the age Haile Gebreselassie was at when he set his WR in 2008 (35) there is good chances that the WR will be under 2 hours in a few years. Or maybe IAAF must do more and better testing out of competition.
 
Mar 26, 2009
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I think running is always going to be worse than road cycling because success in running is so tied to time, and a lot of excitement in the sport is driven by the pursuit and continued achievement of world record times. Cycling does not have this because the routes change so much (yes, some exceptions, like "time to climb Alpe d'Huez" and such, but that is more for interests sake). This means that cycling will be just as exciting if all the riders are going 10% slower because they are all clean, as long as we get good, competitive racing, but if running gets cleaned up I think there would be a decline in interest if runners are running far below the world records.

As an example, look at the resurgence of interest in track lately with Bolt's sprint times, or go back a few decades and see how even the general public was interested in track because of the Bannister-Landy attempts to run a 4-minute mile.
 
Mar 4, 2010
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Lisa Dobriskey after the women's 1,500m final "I'll probably get into trouble for saying this, but I don't believe I'm competing on a level playing field."

The winner of the race has served a two year doping ban and the runner up has improved her PB by a whooping 6.5% this season.
 
Oct 16, 2009
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Tyler'sTwin said:
Lisa Dobriskey after the women's 1,500m final "I'll probably get into trouble for saying this, but I don't believe I'm competing on a level playing field."

The winner of the race has served a two year doping ban and the runner up has improved her PB by a whooping 6.5% this season.
And journalists are as clueless as ever: http://www.heraldsun.com.au/sport/london-olympics/lisa-dobriskey-says-1500m-race-wasnt-run-on-level-playing-field/story-fn9dheyx-1226448099554
But in amongst the negativity and suspicion, there was some good news for athletics as one of the longest-standing drug-tainted world records was finally broken when the US women's 4 x 100m relay team bettered the mark set by East Germany 27 years ago.
SIGH.
 
Mar 4, 2010
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goggalor said:
Crikey! We criticize the cycling media, but at least besting one of the most juiced marks in the sport wouldn't be met with praise.

But in amongst the negativity and suspicion, there was some good news for cycling as one of the longest-standing drug-tainted records was finally broken when Chris Froome bettered Marco Pantani's L'Alpe d'Huez ascent time set in 1997.
Not likely.

Well, maybe in the british media.
 
Tyler'sTwin said:
Swedish marathon runner, Isabellah Andersson, believes doping is widespread.

Isabellah was awarded her European Championship bronze medal from 2010 last month, after miss gold and miss silver were stripped of their medals.

- I get angry and happy at the same time. Glad I finally got the bronze, but bitter because they can not have a better system so that everyone competes clean.

And for Isabellah Andersson, it becomes increasingly difficult to enjoy her sport.

- It's the same now with the Olympics, you do not know who's clean and who is not.

Do you think you will meet doped runners in the Olympics?

- Yes, I think there are many. If it happened in a European Championship, why not the Olympic Games?

What's it like to have that feeling before the Olympics?

- I will try not to think about the others, because it bothers me a great deal. If I think about it too much, I don't want to run anymore. If everyone is doped all the time, why should I keep running?

It feels pointless?

- Yes, that's exactly how I feel.

But can these cases thus shorten your career?

- I do not know, I have not decided yet. I'll just do my thing and run as long as I have the will. If I don't feel good, then I'll quit, that's the way it is. It's not fun to compete with those who use doping.

Isabellah finished 18th in the olympic marathon, 4.29 behind the winner.

- The time was okay, but not a good result. And more than four minutes after the winner is not good either. But I gave it all and could do no more.

- I can not say that everyone in front of me is doped, but there has been a lot of it recently. It is sad when this is the case.

In the European Championships two years ago, she finished fifth, but both the number one and number two in the race were subsequently disqualified for doping: Zivile Balciunaite, Lithuania, and Nailja Yulamanova, Russia.

- I never got the chance to celebrate with a Swedish flag. It's not fun to get a medal in the mail, she says.

Isabellah and her husband and coach Lars Andersson are both convinced that several runners in the Olympic marathon is doped.

- Of course. But I do not know how many. Let us wait and see. You never know what could happen. But there wont be a medal this time, when I came in eighteenth place. There were too many girls before me.

- The testing should be much more stringent. At least once a month.

I am sure that it drives young people out of their sports when they know they can't compete and are honest enough not to take the easy way out. Australia has had a mediocre track and field record for a long time and some of the female runners were saying back in the seventies that they were basically lining up against men. In the past few years it has been brought up again where they are lining up in a final knowing they cannot compete for the podium. Carl Lewis said testing in "Jamaica is slack." It sounds like in athletics, it is much slacker than it should be, just about everywhere.
 
Jul 8, 2012
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movingtarget said:
I am sure that it drives young people out of their sports when they know they can't compete and are honest enough not to take the easy way out. Australia has had a mediocre track and field record for a long time and some of the female runners were saying back in the seventies that they were basically lining up against men. In the past few years it has been brought up again where they are lining up in a final knowing they cannot compete for the podium. Carl Lewis said testing in "Jamaica is slack." It sounds like in athletics, it is much slacker than it should be, just about everywhere.
There was a study in Norway checking out how effective EPO was. Rumor has it that some of the people participating in the study promptly retired afterwords, as they realized they had no chance In heir sport if competitors were on the juice.
 
Sigmund said:
There was a study in Norway checking out how effective EPO was. Rumor has it that some of the people participating in the study promptly retired afterwords, as they realized they had no chance In heir sport if competitors were on the juice.
-----------------
The way I remember that story is that recreational runners juiced with epo suddenly were close to national level. The increase in performance was quite dramatic.

In cross-country however, it is believed in Norway that our great athletes in the 90s were clean while racing epo-doped finns and beating them. These norwegians were using altitude-tents/houses to maximize the blood levels without injections. Isn't Mo Farah doing the same thing ? We have later made this artificial low oxygen houses/tents illegal for athletes in Norway, by naive ethical standards.
I'm not sure how thick the blood became from these practices, but this was before the 50% limit so who knows. In long distance running there is absurdly no such limit even now is there ?
 
Mar 4, 2010
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Armchaircyclist said:
-----------------
The way I remember that story is that recreational runners juiced with epo suddenly were close to national level. The increase in performance was quite dramatic.

In cross-country however, it is believed in Norway that our great athletes in the 90s were clean while racing epo-doped finns and beating them. These norwegians were using altitude-tents/houses to maximize the blood levels without injections. Isn't Mo Farah doing the same thing ? We have later made this artificial low oxygen houses/tents illegal for athletes in Norway, by naive ethical standards.
I'm not sure how thick the blood became from these practices, but this was before the 50% limit so who knows. In long distance running there is absurdly no such limit even now is there ?
Altitude tents do not increase Hb THAT much. Daehlie, Alsgaard and others were most likely on EPO.
 
Tyler'sTwin said:
Crikey! We criticize the cycling media, but at least besting one of the most juiced marks in the sport wouldn't be met with praise.



Not likely.

Well, maybe in the british media.
If wiggins did it you could be assured it would be a victory for clean cycling. Probably noble prize for defeating doping too. Peace and Biology.
 
Jun 12, 2010
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looks to me that " alitude " tents and even whole house artifical enviorements are become the new " normal" for many elite athletes. I would not be suprised to find the entire BC Track team used them. Excellent article here. " For the honest athlete seeking the edge, science has become the new drug. Irish race walker Colin Griffin, who will be competing in London, lives in a specially designed house in Limerick -- the only one of its kind in the country -- where the air can be artificially altered to replicate high-altitude conditions. It's like living halfway up Kilimanjaro

Another Irish walker, Rob Heffernan, achieves the same affect using a tent over his bed. It's cumbersome and uncomfortable, he says, but it works.

His wife, a sprinter who'll also be representing Ireland in London, uses it too."

http://www.herald.ie/entertainment/tv-radio/is-science-winning-this-race-3172776.html

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/olympics/19085030
 
Mar 10, 2009
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iZnoGouD said:
and people think only cyclists dope :mad:
You and Cobra make a good point but we are our worst enemy when it comes to perspective. We think our sport is dirty and some think that most riders are cheating. Until we stop throwing ourselves under the buss I am afraid that Cycling will take the brunt of the criticism and until the truth about some other endurance sports is actually dealt with from they have a problem point of view. Cycling is the whipping sport and we do as much as we can to maintain this point of view. I think that every time someone points a finger at cycling we should be pointing back and saying you are not even dealing with your problem. Every sport has doping and I suppose ever human activity has cheats especially if there is some kind of gain involved. Ever cheat on a resume? Not write dow a stroke at golf? Know the ball was out but took the point? miss the tag on the runner but take the out? Honour and honesty in all human activity is subject to people who think shortcuts are cool. We need to stop jumping to accept or even advocate that ours is a dirty sport because I suspect it is a lot cleaner now than many "other sports"
 
Of 13 positives (to date) during the Olympics

Gymnastics -1
Weight Lifting -1
Rowing -1
Judo -1 (Cannabinoid)

Athletics/Track and Field - 9



At as far as I am concerned athletics/T&F has a serious drugs issue that needs to be addressed by the powers that be.
 
As to T&F/Athletics, a quick look at history has shown the sport has had a plethora of doping problems. Some were so bad in the 90's that a race would end, and we'd wait a month to see who the real winner was when the tests came back. Things aren't much different now, so I'm a little surprised at the timing of the thread. None the less, good work TT for your research, and this is a topic worth discussing (hopefully in a civil manner).

Armchaircyclist said:
In cross-country however, it is believed in Norway that our great athletes in the 90s were clean while racing epo-doped finns and beating them. These norwegians were using altitude-tents/houses to maximize the blood levels without injections.
You may be able to maybe make that argument up through the 1994 Olympics, since the results of the men's relay were startling with Ulvang faltering and Daehlie's top speed lacking. But I wouldn't apply that 100% across the board, and after that, all bets are off.

:cool:
 
Master50 said:
You and Cobra make a good point but we are our worst enemy when it comes to perspective. We think our sport is dirty and some think that most riders are cheating. Until we stop throwing ourselves under the buss I am afraid that Cycling will take the brunt of the criticism...
Some of this is human behavior though. Humans tend to create simple ladders when thinking about things. When it comes to athletes and doping, cycling is the top spot. It's earned the spot!

Whatever federation runs Olympic Tennis and definitely IAAF have bigger doping problems. They don't get caught though!
 
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