Cycling Australia vice-president steps down after admitting to doping

Sep 30, 2009
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Stephen Hodge resigns from the Board of Cycling Australia
Cycling Australia Vice President, Stephen Hodge, has today resigned from the Board effective immediately.
In his resignation letter addressed to the Board and members Mr Hodge has revealed that during a stage of his career as a professional cyclist he took performance-enhancing drugs.
"In light of the current circumstances Stephen has made it clear he doesn't want a mistake he made two decades ago to affect the work of Cycling Australia to take the sport forward," said Cycling Australia President, Klaus Mueller.
Mr Hodge turned professional in 1987 and raced in the European peloton up until his retirement at the end of 1996. He began his tenure on the board as the Chair of the Athlete's Commission in June 1999. At the 2007 Annual General Meeting Mr Hodge was elected Vice President of the Board, a position he has held since that time.
"I would like to personally thank Stephen for his immense contribution to the sport in a volunteer capacity," said Mr Mueller. "When his professional cycling career ended he became a tireless worker for the sport and for almost 15 years has freely given up his time as an advocate for the rights of athletes and to promote and develop the sport in Australia."
"At all times while Stephen was on the Board with me he acted with high principle and great integrity and has been a staunch opponent of doping.
"I commend him for his decision to speak out," said Mr. Mueller.
The content of Mr Hodge's letter, received today by Cycling Australia, is printed below:
"Letter of Resignation
Dear CA Board and CA members,
I am writing to tender my resignation as a Cycling Australia (CA) Director effective immediately.
Prior to the CA Board meeting on the 16 October 2012 I advised Graham Fredericks and Klaus Mueller that during a stage of my career as a professional cyclist I took performance enhancing drugs—a decision I am not proud of.
I am sorry I did it. It was wrong. I apologise unreservedly to CA, my family, friends, colleagues and cycling fans.
When I made Graham and Klaus aware of my situation I offered to resign. It was agreed that I would immediately stand aside from all CA Board duties in advance of submitting a formal resignation. At no point have I been involved in any CA Board meetings or discussions in relation to the termination of Matt White's contract.
During my time on the CA Board, I have shared CA's strong commitment to the fight against doping. I believe other cyclists should never have to face the same pressures I did during my professional career.
I would also like to believe that in my 13 years as a director of CA I have been able to make a valuable contribution in this regard, as well as helping to encourage the growth and strength of cycling as a sport in Australia.
I am proud to have been associated with this work and believe cycling has come a long way—and in fact has led the way in many instances.
It goes without saying that these are challenging times for cycling. But I feel more hopeful than ever for the future of a sport I love
It has been a privilege to serve on the Board and I am grateful for the time and opportunity of working with you all. I wish CA every success.
Stephen Hodge"
 
Sep 29, 2012
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Yet ex-dopers Millar and JV can run a team of admitted dopers under the auspices of a governing body headed by a man banned from the Olympics.

Explain to me how this makes any sense...
 
Aug 27, 2012
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Pattern developing here with Australia leading the way. I'd say the mainstram press has been more fierce very early on in the Lance story since it broke than anywhere else, Cycling Australia has certainly felt the heat.

And then Matt White and now Stephen Hodge doing the honorable thing. Haven't seen that in EU/USA yet...
 
Somehow I just can't see most of the other characters doing what Hodge just did.

But who knows, might be a few vacancies to fill...

If they are to be consistent, then it needs to flow through to the individual State bodies as well.
 
Jan 27, 2010
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BroDeal said:
People were afraid that the Armstrong affair would cripple American cycling. Who knew it would do in the aussies instead.
Sometimes cleaning out the dirt has some unfortunate events.

If this continues throughout cycling nations there will be no doubt that LA and 'gang' did more worse than good. His influence on cycling and racing in N.Am. may end up being devastating as opposed to some myopic North Americans who feel it was good.
 
swuzzlebubble said:
Who is 'they' though?
Anyone who receives a financial or other benefit from their association/engagement with CA/State federations (e.g. staff, management, contractors, riders, coaches etc), or has a position of substance/influence.

But honestly, I think the ones that matter probably won't ever own up.

What rubs me though is a confession sans information pertaining to how, when, how obtained, from whom, who else they know of etc etc isn't really helping to solve the problem.

It would be far more valuable to come to an arrangement to obtain such intelligence.
 
Dear Wiggo said:
Yet ex-dopers Millar and JV can run a team of admitted dopers under the auspices of a governing body headed by a man banned from the Olympics.

Explain to me how this makes any sense...
What seems to be happening is that you have previously confessed and thrown yourself on the alter, atoned, mended your ways and asked for forgiveness.... you're ok.

However if you confess now it's only because you are worried about getting caught up in the domino effect of evidence being presented. You're seen to be opportunistic and fundamentally corrupt...and I can't say I disagree with it.
 
Jul 16, 2009
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This is good, and it is bad.

Is this where it begins?
Men and women with integrity.
What an act of honesty and integrity. I applaud this man and his actions.

Can I ask, does Phil Andrerson sleep well at night (not suggesting anything)?

What about if 20 former Australian cyclists come out and admit it.
Just say "yes I did too"
They can't be held liable by former sponsors, insurers, underwriters, they can't lose the medals- because they aren't specifying when and where and what.
All that it needs for is Tucker, Kelly, McEwan, McGee, Eadie, Phil, and so on, everyone from the 90s who did, to just come out and say "me too".

Would it cripple the sport? I doubt it.
I mean come on, we all know what we think they did. It would not come as a surprise. We'd be MORE surprised if someone said "well actually I didn't, really"

Stephen Hodge I admire what you did

The problem is that you aren't there anymore, and you are precisely the type of person we need there at the moment.

I'm disappointed they didn't refuse your resignation, and just suspend you temporarily pending thinking it through.

Your coming out was an act of honesty and leadership.
Your resignation being accepted is NOT what cyclists need to see.

Their accepting it was kneejerk, an organisatino afraid to sit and wait, and show some thought to this

Playing the PR hard ball zero tolerance response is NOT going to encourage other cyclists to fall on their sword for the sake of the sport.

If no one else admits it, because they know the next employer or whever they are presently with has to be "seen" to punish them, and they risk losing their livelihoods and providing for their families, then Matt and Stephen will die alone, like Werner Reiterer did 12 year ago.

That is the last thing we need

CA show some spine.
SHow some leadership
Reinstate him, suspend him, and get as many former cyclists into the boat

The public already think anything they might hear anyway.
 
Jul 16, 2009
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Polyarmour said:
What seems to be happening is that you have previously confessed and thrown yourself on the alter, atoned, mended your ways and asked for forgiveness.... you're ok.

However if you confess now it's only because you are worried about getting caught up in the domino effect of evidence being presented. You're seen to be opportunistic and fundamentally corrupt...and I can't say I disagree with it.
yet most people say they understand the complexities of it, and with LA, all he had to do was come out as recently as 1 month ago, and most people would say "oh yeah", well thats cycling

we NEED people to be comfortable to out themselves to speak now

if there domino effect, its an IF, then its a speculation, like Rogers and Pueblo. Then you deny, and the circus moves over you

we need to eradicate the perception that owning up is opportunistic and fundamentally corrupt. its not. it doesnt matter when, but when it happens its always the right thing to do
 
Dear Wiggo said:
Yet ex-dopers Millar and JV can run a team of admitted dopers under the auspices of a governing body headed by a man banned from the Olympics.

Explain to me how this makes any sense...
Yeah, I don't get it either. Why did he have to resign? If his doping, or decision to dope, years ago had something to do with the way he contributed to Cycling Australia, I could see it, but that doesn't seem to be what they're saying.
 
Sep 29, 2012
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Polyarmour said:
What seems to be happening is that you have previously confessed and thrown yourself on the alter, atoned, mended your ways and asked for forgiveness.... you're ok.

However if you confess now it's only because you are worried about getting caught up in the domino effect of evidence being presented. You're seen to be opportunistic and fundamentally corrupt...and I can't say I disagree with it.
Millar only confessed after he was caught. To my way of thinking, Hodges trumps Millar as Hodges has not yet been caught. In fact there's probably no evidence anywhere in the USADA files of him doping. Hodges asked forgiveness.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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Ozzie2 said:
This is good, and it is bad.

Is this where it begins?
Men and women with integrity.
What an act of honesty and integrity. I applaud this man and his actions.

Playing the PR hard ball zero tolerance response is NOT going to encourage other cyclists to fall on their sword for the sake of the sport.

If no one else admits it, because they know the next employer or whever they are presently with has to be "seen" to punish them, and they risk losing their livelihoods and providing for their families, then Matt and Stephen will die alone, like Werner Reiterer did 12 year ago.

That is the last thing we need

CA show some spine.
SHow some leadership
Reinstate him, suspend him, and get as many former cyclists into the boat

The public already think anything they might hear anyway.
I agree with this.

I also agree with most of this

http://www.cyclingtips.com.au/
 
Jul 8, 2009
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So since it's only Australian Board members and Staff who are coming out... Mmmm...

Will we hear from their compatriots in the Italian, American, Russian, French, Spanish, New Zealand, English, Irish, Scottish, Swedish, Luxomberg, Norwegian, Columbian, Portuguese federations???? (I could go on!)

The optimist in me would like to believe that all of the above federations are squeaky clean, but the pessimist in me thinks that there are some rotten fruit amongst them? Should we expect Paolo Bettini to make a statement any time soon?
 
Mar 10, 2009
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Its as if he's confessing to hide something else elsewhere by drawing the attention to a dead end, makes total nonsense. :confused:
 
Ozzie2 said:
yet most people say they understand the complexities of it, and with LA, all he had to do was come out as recently as 1 month ago, and most people would say "oh yeah", well thats cycling

we NEED people to be comfortable to out themselves to speak now

if there domino effect, its an IF, then its a speculation, like Rogers and Pueblo. Then you deny, and the circus moves over you

we need to eradicate the perception that owning up is opportunistic and fundamentally corrupt. its not. it doesnt matter when, but when it happens its always the right thing to do
I think all ex dopers would be assessing the risks day by day at the moment.
It's a fluid situation and there is no established policy on how to handle it and what's more there won't be because the UCI has lost control of it.

If denying is your only strategy I think you'll be caught out. They are going over all the doping doctors with a fine tooth comb. If your name pops up there how do you explain it? How do you explain it if another cyclist fingers you in his affadavit? Maybe they retest some of these blood or urine samples that they have going back years. Maybe the UCI are sitting on a powderkeg of info that they kept hidden?

What is worse? Owning up now and copping it on the chin... or hoping I can fly under the radar with the risk I might still get caught? This isn't the same as other doping scandals, the Omerta is cracking wide open, it's every man for himself now.
 
Sep 29, 2012
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onimod said:
^ maybe he resigned because he's not comfortable with what has/is happening inside CA?
I was wondering the same about Allan Peiper (leaving Garmin to become BMC's "high performance" director to help them with altitude training camps - ala Kerrison - after taking Ryder to his Giro win) and Brad McGee, leaving Saxo Bank to go and work in Aus with the NSWIS.

Doping history fall-out (of the person leaving), salary increase, or...?

Playing devil's bustard child for a second (sorry, staying in the role I have assumed):

Garmin is team clean. Surely anyone wanting to help young riders get into cycling in a clean way would be keen to work with Garmin and continue the good work they do - proving not only can you finish a GT clean, but you can win a GT clean.

Peiper was the person that directed Ryder to his win.

Surely Ryder and Garmin's income is up now that they have a GT win under their belt? Surely there's a bit more money for Peiper?

BMC offer Peiper more money than Garmin and so he leaves? Money trumps proving that you can win GTs clean and helping young riders survive clean in a dirty, dirty peloton?

What am I missing?
 
Apr 14, 2010
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Dear Wiggo said:
I was wondering the same about Allan Peiper (leaving Garmin to become BMC's "high performance" director to help them with altitude training camps - ala Kerrison - after taking Ryder to his Giro win) and Brad McGee, leaving Saxo Bank to go and work in Aus with the NSWIS.

What am I missing?
I very much doubt McGee felt he had to leave a team lead by Riis for any perceived doping past

As for Peiper, since JV constantly talks about how small his budget is, and BMC effectively don't have a budget, Im sure a big boost in salary was involved. Further, having been a DS for quite some time now, Im sure he's looking for a new challenge, and the fact that he wouldn't have to be constantly travelling with the team to races would also probably be an incentive for him to have a role which would allow a more settled domestic life.
 
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