Do you believe anyone is clean?

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Dr. Maserati

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forty four said:
why do some of you follow cycling its clear your bitter these forums are sad for the most part. its as if some would prefer to think many if not all good riders are doped as opposed to simply being mentally and physically stronger than the average racer/rider. accept it some dope but most are just superior as athletes than you will ever be get over it. your ego will survive that much is clear at least based on the delusion of most posts. i assume most of the particularly virulent posters would have various reasons as to explain there own poor racing performances. if of course they race much at all.:confused:
Hey Fortyfour, I am not bitter ...Yip, I'm peed off a little, frustrated a lot, but bitter, no! There are a lot of diverse opinions on this subject and as to why people still follow the sport - as seen in this thread.

Sure, there are contributors here who's view is opposite to mine. But the contributors on this side of the forum I believe are united in their passion for the sport and the vast majority are objective and many here back up their observations with links to substantiate their argument.
As to your comment - "if of course they race much at all", again many contributors here are racers, all the way to Pro Tour level. Also there are administrators and coaches here too - for me the more opinions the better.
I was a racer btw- haven't in a few years, is my opinion less so because of that? Thats like the argument that because someones post-count is higher than someone else they must 'know' more! For me, I ahem, 'topup' my post-count everyday with this little beaut!!....In my defense everyone does it!!!

beroepsrenner said:
Spot on!!!
I recently stumbled on this forum out of curiosity and was astounded at the obsession of some of the contributors. As an ex pro I have been trying to offer balanced discussion on the subject of doping and without totally defending the practice I have tried to offer an insight into the psychology behind it. Every TDF rider from first to last is an outstanding athlete regardless of what goes on behind the scenes. The reality is wether you all want to believe it or not is that the incidence of doping is probably at its lowest point in 30 years. Try delving into the "peloton mafia" that decides who can and cant go up the road, the collusion between teams, who you chase and who you dont. That would really boggle your minds.
Now this is spot on! All elite level riders are exceptional athletes and furthermore, as an ex pro your insights are invaluable. But when we here on the forum try and speculate on the numbers doping - that is all we are doing, speculating. I do think it is cleaner, but honestly I have little I can offer that can back up my opinion.
I also agree about the 'peloton mafia' - which could be a 'room' on this forum alone, but doping within the sport is still the biggest and most serious issue imo.
 
You see. That's why I like to come to this side of the Forum. We can have civilized discussions about cycling and all its aspects.

Thanks to both moderators: Alpe and Dr. Maserati

Gosh, the voting is going to be tough.
 

Dr. Maserati

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Escarabajo said:
You see. That's why I like to come to this side of the Forum. We can have civilized discussions about cycling and all its aspects.

Thanks to both moderators: Alpe and Dr. Maserati

Gosh, the voting is going to be tough.
Obviously the contributer with the most posts should be moderator ;).... congrat's Alpe!!
 
Jun 26, 2009
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Alpe d'Huez said:
Well, if I were to take a guess, I'd say we're seeing less doping in the last three years, than we have in the entire EPO era. It's my belief the higher up the ladder, the more refined, and discrete your program. But doping controls have made it harder to dope than maybe ever, even though the controls are imperfect, and this applies to all riders. Even those on top programs.

If you go back further than the EPO era, you may have actually had a higher percentage of riders doping. Judging by what Willy Voet and others said, the use of corticoids, and even amphetamines, were rampant before EPO. People who don't believe this and think everyone back then was clean as a whistle need to do some historical research (Laurent Fignon for starters). The difference is that those products don't give the gains that O2 carrier doping does.
You have hit the nail right on the head Alpe! I couldnt have said it better myself. You are a very astute student of the sport.
 
Mar 13, 2009
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Alpe d'Huez said:
Well, if I were to take a guess, I'd say we're seeing less doping in the last three years, than we have in the entire EPO era. It's my belief the higher up the ladder, the more refined, and discrete your program. But doping controls have made it harder to dope than maybe ever, even though the controls are imperfect, and this applies to all riders. Even those on top programs.

If you go back further than the EPO era, you may have actually had a higher percentage of riders doping. Judging by what Willy Voet and others said, the use of corticoids, and even amphetamines, were rampant before EPO. People who don't believe this and think everyone back then was clean as a whistle need to do some historical research (Laurent Fignon for starters). The difference is that those products don't give the gains that O2 carrier doping does.
what did they say about hormone levels at the Tour in 2007. Over half on hgh or other androgens? From the Swiss lab. Could have been apocryphal from the institution that was testing, not sure, they may have had an agenda, to quote a high number.

Personally, I can see that, over half doing something.

What I think has happened, the teams like Fuji-Srvetto, nee Saunier Duval, they are finding it harder to continue egregious practices and really pushing the envelope. Dekker would have never been shown the door 6 years ago, or if they did not have a ready replacement with Robert Gesink.

So, the freelance and renegade programs are minimised, but the more developed programs by the good doctors, they are just as effective, and will most likely take the most of the top 10 at the Tour this year, but not all, as proven by Kohl, who used the manager slash alchemist, and no doctors. Freelancer.
 
Jun 26, 2009
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More stringent testing and the greater awareness of the outside world has made it more clandestine in the current era. When I first went to belgium to race in the early 80s it was not hidden. i remeber getting changed for a Kermis race with few others and everyone was loading their "pics" (syringes) and comparing doses with amphetamines. You learned by asking experienced pros. No doctors here.
 
Jun 15, 2009
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beroepsrenner said:
Spot on!!!
I recently stumbled on this forum out of curiosity and was astounded at the obsession of some of the contributors. As an ex pro I have been trying to offer balanced discussion on the subject of doping and without totally defending the practice I have tried to offer an insight into the psychology behind it. Every TDF rider from first to last is an outstanding athlete regardless of what goes on behind the scenes. The reality is wether you all want to believe it or not is that the incidence of doping is probably at its lowest point in 30 years. Try delving into the "peloton mafia" that decides who can and cant go up the road, the collusion between teams, who you chase and who you dont. That would really boggle your minds.
At least i would like to hear some of those stories. My personal belief is that match-fixing (in cycling, should i call it "race-fixing"?) spoils the integrity of sports much much more then Doping. Because, as i wrote in other threads before, i think Doping dont work as much as pipo think (all placebo, except "Extra-Blood"-Doping).
 

Dr. Maserati

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FoxxyBrown1111 said:
At least i would like to hear some of those stories. My personal belief is that match-fixing (in cycling, should i call it "race-fixing"?) spoils the integrity of sports much much more then Doping. Because, as i wrote in other threads before, i think Doping dont work as much as pipo think (all placebo, except "Extra-Blood"-Doping).
You could well be correct on just how effective doping is but the key difference between the doping problem and say 'race fixing' is that with doping it is forcing riders to make a choice that could prove detrimental on their health.
 
Jun 15, 2009
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Dr. Maserati said:
You could well be correct on just how effective doping is but the key difference between the doping problem and say 'race fixing' is that with doping it is forcing riders to make a choice that could prove detrimental on their health.
An indepentend NFL-Study showed the Avg.-Life-Expectancy for retired players is actually HIGHER then for "normal" americans. That means even in a sport with big-time doping AND painkiller-overuse the long-term effects are not as bad as it seems. BUT: I dont know how the new drugs influence the long-term life of ex-pros. May HGH and Epo are worse then the "old" steroids.

Anyway the rider still has the choice to say no to drugs (as in every other part of life), while he has no choice to evade fixed events. I still think thats the biggest problem in pro sports. The more fixing, the meaningless the event. Plus: With doping (especially if everybody does) at least you have some kind of fair competition. In any fixed event, you have it like a wrestling-match. Thats why i would like to know what the poster meant with "peloton-mafia".
 
Jun 26, 2009
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FoxxyBrown1111 said:
At least i would like to hear some of those stories. My personal belief is that match-fixing (in cycling, should i call it "race-fixing"?) spoils the integrity of sports much much more then Doping. Because, as i wrote in other threads before, i think Doping dont work as much as pipo think (all placebo, except "Extra-Blood"-Doping).
Race fixing as you call it mostly happens in the small criteriums where there is usually an invitation only start list and it is usually done to put on a show for the paying spectators. usually the local hero is set up for the win. I rode Didi Thurau's final race in Germany in 1988, 40 starters, 100klms on a 350m hotdog circuit and ridden in just on 2 hours. Extremely hot pace but every move was preplanned at a meeting of riders before the race and everyone got an equal share of the prizemoney on top of start fees. In stage races the early breaks are often worked out amongst DSs the night before. Teams not in contension for GC are sometimes "enticed" by teams that are to assist with chasing and leadouts etc. Peleton tempo is often controlled early in the stage by the big hitters of the day ( in my day Hinault, kelly, Raas etc ) If you try to defy them they can make life pretty difficult for you.
 
Jun 15, 2009
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beroepsrenner said:
Race fixing as you call it mostly happens in the small criteriums where there is usually an invitation only start list and it is usually done to put on a show for the paying spectators. usually the local hero is set up for the win. I rode Didi Thurau's final race in Germany in 1988, 40 starters, 100klms on a 350m hotdog circuit and ridden in just on 2 hours. Extremely hot pace but every move was preplanned at a meeting of riders before the race and everyone got an equal share of the prizemoney on top of start fees. In stage races the early breaks are often worked out amongst DSs the night before. Teams not in contension for GC are sometimes "enticed" by teams that are to assist with chasing and leadouts etc. Peleton tempo is often controlled early in the stage by the big hitters of the day ( in my day Hinault, kelly, Raas etc ) If you try to defy them they can make life pretty difficult for you.
So when you write about "early breaks", it means we still have the best rider winning at the end of a stage? If not, are at least the Mountain-Stages true events or are they also "set up"? If that would be true, then its like a fixed soccer-match, pre-decided in some crazy chinese internet-sportsbook. I mean then we could really give up watching. Then pro cycling is as meaningless as an italian soccer-match.
 
Jun 26, 2009
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FoxxyBrown1111 said:
So when you write about "early breaks", it means we still have the best rider winning at the end of a stage? If not, are at least the Mountain-Stages true events or are they also "set up"? If that would be true, then its like a fixed soccer-match, pre-decided in some crazy chinese internet-sportsbook. I mean then we could really give up watching. Then pro cycling is as meaningless as an italian soccer-match.
Nobody in contention for GC is allowed to go up the road ( hence the cafuffle with Evans). The gap is monitored and the controlling teams will close the gap before the finish usually. If one or two nobodies survive to win a stage you can be assured that they've earned it. The battle between the contenders is the real deal. As I said fixed races are small criteriums set up to entertain the people, not GTs and other international races.
 
May 26, 2009
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beroepsrenner said:
Race fixing as you call it mostly happens in the small criteriums where there is usually an invitation only start list and it is usually done to put on a show for the paying spectators. usually the local hero is set up for the win. I rode Didi Thurau's final race in Germany in 1988, 40 starters, 100klms on a 350m hotdog circuit and ridden in just on 2 hours. Extremely hot pace but every move was preplanned at a meeting of riders before the race and everyone got an equal share of the prizemoney on top of start fees. In stage races the early breaks are often worked out amongst DSs the night before. Teams not in contension for GC are sometimes "enticed" by teams that are to assist with chasing and leadouts etc. Peleton tempo is often controlled early in the stage by the big hitters of the day ( in my day Hinault, kelly, Raas etc ) If you try to defy them they can make life pretty difficult for you.
A very similar tale is told in "A Dog in A Hat" by Joe Parkin (that Blackcat put me on to over at another forum). Excellent read.
I really appreciate hearing from someone that's been on the inside of the professional peloton. Does your nick imply current or former pro cyclist?
Personally, I don't really care if they're doped to the gills or not. I love the beauty of this sport, and have since I was 11 years old and had my first race on a velodrome in Collie, Western Australia.
 
Jun 26, 2009
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groverjones said:
A very similar tale is told in "A Dog in A Hat" by Joe Parkin (that Blackcat put me on to over at another forum). Excellent read.
I really appreciate hearing from someone that's been on the inside of the professional peloton. Does your nick imply current or former pro cyclist?
Personally, I don't really care if they're doped to the gills or not. I love the beauty of this sport, and have since I was 11 years old and had my first race on a velodrome in Collie, Western Australia.
Havent read it yet but hope to soon. Actually my avatar pic was cropped from a group shot with Parkin right beside me.
 

Dr. Maserati

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FoxxyBrown1111 said:
An indepentend NFL-Study showed the Avg.-Life-Expectancy for retired players is actually HIGHER then for "normal" americans. That means even in a sport with big-time doping AND painkiller-overuse the long-term effects are not as bad as it seems. BUT: I dont know how the new drugs influence the long-term life of ex-pros. May HGH and Epo are worse then the "old" steroids.

Anyway the rider still has the choice to say no to drugs (as in every other part of life), while he has no choice to evade fixed events. I still think thats the biggest problem in pro sports. The more fixing, the meaningless the event. Plus: With doping (especially if everybody does) at least you have some kind of fair competition. In any fixed event, you have it like a wrestling-match. Thats why i would like to know what the poster meant with "peloton-mafia".
Not being blunt but Johannes Draaijer - of PDM in 1990 - death was reported to be because of misuse of EPO - he was 26. Also there were a lot of riders that died of unexplained deaths around that time.

Yes people have a choice when they enter cycling either dope or don't dope.

But what you are really asking is - after years of making a sacrifice, maybe even at the cost of a proper education, being disciplined and becoming a gifted rider that to be just competitive and accepted in to cycling's culture to have any potential of making a team, let alone a decent living - that they have to partake in something that could destroy their health.
It is not a choice I would like to have to make.
 
Jun 15, 2009
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beroepsrenner said:
Race fixing as you call it mostly happens in the small criteriums where there is usually an invitation only start list and it is usually done to put on a show for the paying spectators. usually the local hero is set up for the win. I rode Didi Thurau's final race in Germany in 1988, 40 starters, 100klms on a 350m hotdog circuit and ridden in just on 2 hours. Extremely hot pace but every move was preplanned at a meeting of riders before the race and everyone got an equal share of the prizemoney on top of start fees. In stage races the early breaks are often worked out amongst DSs the night before. Teams not in contension for GC are sometimes "enticed" by teams that are to assist with chasing and leadouts etc. Peleton tempo is often controlled early in the stage by the big hitters of the day ( in my day Hinault, kelly, Raas etc ) If you try to defy them they can make life pretty difficult for you.
That sounds pretty normal to me. Honest racing on the big tours and 1-Day-Classics. No obscure betting birds on some chinese or las vegas sportsbooks. The cycling fan cant ask for more integrity (in contrast to NBA/MLB/NFL/Soccer). But then again, what you really meant with the "peloton-mafia"? I know doping is bad, but at least we have no pre-arranged outcomes, if i got you right. Thats a big plus for the cycling audience.
 
Mar 19, 2009
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I think team milram is a clean one, they claim to have a strong anti doping policy and when riders join them they seem to get worse, that´s a good sign :S I believe the french are, just because they have a good reputation for it nowadays. Infact I usually believe everyone is untill they get done, but milram i am most confident in.
 
Jun 15, 2009
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Cunego sounds clean (i mean to make a anti-doping-tatoo and if later getting caught, how bad would that look, maybe like somebody tatoos HIV on his forehad) and the results speak for him (from 1st to 19th in Giro between 2004 and 2009, normally athlets get better until they peak at around age 28, not the other way round).

The way Sastre speaks nowadays about family, results not important etc.; it looks Sastre is clean now. Also the results speak for him. So it would be ironic if he gets caught for the 2008 TdF-Samples.

Kenny van Hummel must be clean, i mean loosing time after 4 km in flat stages every single day ...

Lance Armstrong is clean, because he says so and he is the most tested person in the universe ;)
 
Jul 25, 2009
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FoxxyBrown1111 said:
An indepentend NFL-Study showed the Avg.-Life-Expectancy for retired players is actually HIGHER then for "normal" americans. That means even in a sport with big-time doping AND painkiller-overuse the long-term effects are not as bad as it seems. BUT: I dont know how the new drugs influence the long-term life of ex-pros. May HGH and Epo are worse then the "old" steroids.
Is it true for every position though?
Is there any studies on the medical problems they encounter past retirement?

Not saying doping will kill people like an Ukrainian serial killer on the loose but this sport is so brutal that I find it impossible that it would take no toll on the guys (at least in the lines).
 
Jun 15, 2009
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ThisFrenchGuy said:
Is it true for every position though?
Is there any studies on the medical problems they encounter past retirement?

Not saying doping will kill people like an Ukrainian serial killer on the loose but this sport is so brutal that I find it impossible that it would take no toll on the guys (at least in the lines).
The last indepentend study is from the late 90s, so may the new drugs (and the massive weight gains on Linemen the past years) have some effect on life-expectancy. But on studies 60s-90s for every position its about the same: the live longer. The bad side is: all studies showed that around 2/3 suffer from some kind of permanent pain, no matter if they had long or short careers. It would be interesting to have any study of ex-cyclists. I expect they also live longer, at least until the "Epo-Generation" came up. So Fignons situation is sad, but not because of doping. If he was honest, he "only" took those placebo BS like Cortison and Ampethamins.
 
Jun 26, 2009
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Dr. Maserati said:
Not being blunt but Johannes Draaijer - of PDM in 1990 - death was reported to be because of misuse of EPO - he was 26. Also there were a lot of riders that died of unexplained deaths around that time.

Yes people have a choice when they enter cycling either dope or don't dope.

But what you are really asking is - after years of making a sacrifice, maybe even at the cost of a proper education, being disciplined and becoming a gifted rider that to be just competitive and accepted in to cycling's culture to have any potential of making a team, let alone a decent living - that they have to partake in something that could destroy their health.
It is not a choice I would like to have to make.
Draaijer was one of the guys I had in mind on one of my previous posts when I said there had been many more deaths than the ones commonly quoted.This was around the time that EPO was coming into widespread use and not much was known about its risks.
Doping was a choice I made without being forced. I was born into the sport, my father was a cyclist and it was all I ever wanted to do. Trying to find my way into a decent team and a decent income was a struggle at a time when very few English speaking riders were in the European pro ranks. You had to be exceptional as there were plenty of average guys like me already there trying for the same limited places. In hindsight I was probably in over my head but when you are 21 you think you are invincible and at the time i didnt consider the short or long term risks involved. Ironically, after surviving a cardiac arrest a couple of years ago, the cardiologist told me the only thing that saved me was a strong heart gained from a lifetime of competative cycling. The arrest followed a mountain bike ride where my ego was writing checks that my fitness level couldnt cash. I outclimbed all the young guys with my high tolerance to pain then paid the ultmate price... almost. I tried a few PEDs but epo wasnt around during my time
 
Jul 23, 2009
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writing checks

as an old guy i relate to the ego writing checks part. no doubt my pain tolerance is lower than yours and john henry's as i dont have the stones to push to heart attack-glad you survived.
 

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