Doping in Austria

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Now, I was uncertain whether I should bring this up and I'm not sure how far this has been discussed already, but what do you think of the fact that Roglic and Pogacar are doing so extremely well? I have nothing against them personally and there is no evidence whatsoever, but since there have obviously been connections between the Aderlass-guys and Slovenian cycling... and Slovenia being such a small country... and the Erzen link... Now maybe cycling has become extremely popular in Slovenia or maybe it's due to the sportive structures. But I can't help it, my doubt is a bit bigger than normal. Maybe some of you who have deeper insights can help me out.
 
The manufacturer, Sigma also makes derivative versions from other animals. So while you're cheating with a water-add blood booster go full HORSE and get really fast.
We can finally turn a donkey into a horse. Or even ... a dolphin!!! Wouldn't a dolphin be totally cute, squealing its way through interviews? "What's that Flipper, it was really hard out there but you just didn't have the legs? Well, yes, it's hard to argue with that.,"
 
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Merck is the manufacturer in Germany Oldermanish , but they did buy Sigma-Aldrich a while back.

What I don't understand is the prosecutor back in Nov 2019 said they discovered this HG powder and handed the names to UCI/CADF, but then yesterday reports that a Croatian supplier of it to Schmidt cooperated after being arrested last month revealing the existence of the same HG Powder? I can only assume they knew what the powder was and what it did last year, but not the manufacture/product name until last month?
 
I will say that the timing seems a little strange to me cause I don't really think 2016 and 2017 had many crazy performances.
Could mean the stuff doesn't work?

Question for science geeks: how close is this to Actovegin? (Obvs one is bovine and the other human, I get that, but part from that...) The CN article draws a parallel with Hemopure (also bovine), saying it didn't do anything for Rasmussen, and Actovegin didn't actually have much uptake (I think LA has claimed Festina used it).
 
Could mean the stuff doesn't work?

Question for science geeks: how close is this to Actovegin? (Obvs one is bovine and the other human, I get that, but part from that...) The CN article draws a parallel with Hemopure (also bovine), saying it didn't do anything for Rasmussen, and Actovegin didn't actually have much uptake (I think LA has claimed Festina used it).
Nah it's probably more that they need to refine the usage and it needs to become more widespread before the overall performances in a whole group take off. It's probably the riders who use it properly early that benefit the most before the level evens out again
 
Could mean the stuff doesn't work?

Question for science geeks: how close is this to Actovegin? (Obvs one is bovine and the other human, I get that, but part from that...) The CN article draws a parallel with Hemopure (also bovine), saying it didn't do anything for Rasmussen, and Actovegin didn't actually have much uptake (I think LA has claimed Festina used it).
It's the same type of drug in that they're all hemoglobin-based oxygen carriers (HBOC) synthetic blood, instead of Perfluorocarbon-based (PFC) which is what Gianetti took when he collapsed. So they're different.

No idea how it differs from the other brands of HBOC though, chemically I mean. Not sure if each one is so similar that they can be traced via the same doping control either (the article says that specific, non-standard testing is needed to discover HBOCs).
 
Schmidt's trial begins next week, CADF testing for
It's the same type of drug in that they're all hemoglobin-based oxygen carriers (HBOC) synthetic blood, instead of Perfluorocarbon-based (PFC) which is what Gianetti took when he collapsed. So they're different.

No idea how it differs from the other brands of HBOC though, chemically I mean. Not sure if each one is so similar that they can be traced via the same doping control either (the article says that specific, non-standard testing is needed to discover HBOCs).
HBOCs are tested for, but only in the event of ABP anomalies and targeted testing via non-analytical evidence. This is why HBOCs are favoured over say EPO I would assume because so long as your ABP is in check (via microdosing it's claimed), unlike say EPO, HBOCs are not actually looked for by the WADA labs.

Of 2018's 2063 samples tested for HBOCs across all sports, 182 of those samples came from athletes in-competition blood samples and it seems nearly only ever tested for in Polish & Australian WADA labs, so perhaps only a minority of labs have the expertise. It was described as a very expensive test somewhere I read.

Total HBOC tests within road cycling was 3 from in competition samples & 78 from out of competition samples so I think safe to say only 3 riders have ever been tested for HBOCs across all of road cycling in 2018 and risk even out of compeition must be very low outside Poland & Austrlia.
 
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What sort of program is Dominic Thiem on? Even more ridiculous than the one Thomas Muster was on?
Stamina isn't really out of this world, he's obviously a strong boy with amazing technique for hitting hard, and he isn't really one of the fastest guy on Tour.

Yeah he's one of the most physical players but I woudln't really know what really stands out. It's hard for me to guess how much pace is down to technique and how much to sheer strength.

I will say his improvement in results IMO is mostly technical. He was also really physically strong long before he started making Slam finals, and he did get gassed badly against Nadal at the 2019 RG final.
 
Not really the topic here, but I still don't want to let this pass completely: Thiem said there is no doping in top tennis, he would vouch for every top player he knows. That is ridiculous. And it's what makes me believe he dopes himself, because he's not stupid and should know there is doping in tennis and it helps, just like in pretty much every other sport. Even in chess and shooting there's doping. So if he does not dope, he could say "I don't dope, I swear, and I can't imagine my friends doing it" or something like that. But someone who denies there is doping in top level tennis, who says that it does not help certain player types, and that it's all just contamination, has no credibility for me.
 
Okay, again about Pogacar and Roglic: I don't want to make accusations. I would just like possible explanations. Can somebody explain what might favour Slovenians or what their system is like, so that two of them get to the top of the TdF?
 
Okay, again about Pogacar and Roglic: I don't want to make accusations. I would just like possible explanations. Can somebody explain what might favour Slovenians or what their system is like, so that two of them get to the top of the TdF?
Same doctor/PED?

Climbing times are through the roof this year, which means there's something new that's persistent throughout the top 10 of the GC and probably even wider than that. That said, Roglic and Pogacar would then need an additional advantage to be on top of these guys.
 
Not really the topic here, but I still don't want to let this pass completely: Thiem said there is no doping in top tennis, he would vouch for every top player he knows. That is ridiculous. And it's what makes me believe he dopes himself, because he's not stupid and should know there is doping in tennis and it helps, just like in pretty much every other sport. Even in chess and shooting there's doping. So if he does not dope, he could say "I don't dope, I swear, and I can't imagine my friends doing it" or something like that. But someone who denies there is doping in top level tennis, who says that it does not help certain player types, and that it's all just contamination, has no credibility for me.
I'm pretty sure tennis is abolutely rife with it, and I'd imagine there's a lot of HGH use in juniors.
 
Not saying Thiem isn't talented or that he didn't have the physical attributes, but his game is quite grinding. He hits every ball like it's the last. I've watched some of his practice sessions and he's treating those like matches, grinding away and straining.
 
Aderlass trial starts today:
BERLIN (AFP) - The murky business of doping in sport goes under the microscope on Wednesday (Sept 16) when the trial of a German doctor accused of masterminding an international blood-doping network dismantled last year opens in Munich.

Sports physician Mark Schmidt, 42, from Erfurt, and four co-defendants who allegedly aided him, are accused of helping at least two dozen athletes undergo blood transfusions to boost performance illicitly from "the end of 2011 at the latest", according to state prosecutors.

"One must not forget, this is a business with a hard currency - money," sports lawyer Michael Lehner said ahead of the trial. We are not dealing with an athlete who dopes himself, but with the business of doping."

So far, 23 cyclists and skiers from eight countries are known to be involved, but more names could emerge.

"More can - and should - come out than what we already know," Lehner added. "There are certainly more athletes involved, the network will have been bigger."
 
Same doctor/PED?

Climbing times are through the roof this year, which means there's something new that's persistent throughout the top 10 of the GC and probably even wider than that. That said, Roglic and Pogacar would then need an additional advantage to be on top of these guys.
Climbing times could be faster because of tactics and consistency of equipment, too. Tactically everyone's been sitting this Tour until the climbs and then they've been led to the launching point by JV. That and almost all climbers have turned into spinners, save for Pierre Roland and Fortunato. The consistency of the lead pack is evident and gaps are only appearing at the ends of climbs. That's minus the sick and injured of course.

Suggesting Roglic and Poga have the same doctorin' would be too convenient and professionally stupid for them. I would doubt it....
 
CADF complete Aderlass retests:
The Cycling Anti-Doping Foundation (CADF) announced there were no adverse analytical findings in the samples from 2013 to 2019 reanalysed as part of Operation Aderlass.

Following Operation Aderlass, which implicated athletes in skiing as well as cycling, the CADF was requested to reanalyse samples taken during the 2016 and 2017 seasons by the International Cycling Union (UCI).

Based on further information received from law-enforcement authorities and a comprehensive overall assessment, the CADF not only conducted the required reanalysis but also expanded the retesting to include samples as far back as 2013 and until 2019.

The CADF investigated more than 800 in- and out-of-competition blood and urine samples, with 50 per cent of the samples from 2016 and 2017.

This resulted in no adverse analytical findings being reported.

The reanalysed blood samples were also screened for, among a wide range of forbidden substances, haemoglobin-based oxygen carriers.
 

Rough google translation of how things stand in the Aderlass process:

On the 13th day of the trial, about two weeks ago, the general practitioner Mark Schmidt announced that he had to announce something again. This had not happened all too often in the process before the Munich II Regional Court; and there were now quite a few delicate allegations to discuss. But Schmidt then designed his lecture a little, well: surprisingly. Among other things, he recapitulated how officials arrested him in February 2019. How they felt his practice in Erfurt, "bombarded" him with questions that a world had broken for him. And only its removal: "Against the direction of travel into a one-way street!" Later, when they transferred Schmidt to the Munich-Stadelheim prison, the officers sent several cars to confuse the photographers in front of the building. His vehicle then roared away, like in the "cinema". Schmidt found that really "dangerous". That is understandable: that at some point you cling to such things, to the little unreasonable demands on the roadside, when you've been in custody for almost two tough years - a really strange long time - and this label has been on you ever since, "Erfurt Doping doctor ". The US judiciary is committed to the fight against doping with a new law that doesn't fit the sport. In fact, things could get more uncomfortable for scammers now. Comment from Thomas Kistner On February 27, 2019 Schmidt's network at the Nordic World Ski Championships in Seefeld was blown; one of his clients, the cross-country skier Johannes Dürr, had unpacked with the investigators. The doctor and four alleged helpers have now had to answer in Munich for three months. They are said to have provided blood doping to more than 20 athletes for years, from Germany, Austria, Estonia, Kazakhstan, Croatia, Slovenia, Italy, Switzerland. Schmidt has now admitted that. It is the largest doping criminal process since doping has become a criminal offense in Germany, and now that the proceedings will probably lead to a judgment at the beginning of January, the dust of doubts has lifted from some things. Much of it could very well be given the attributes "cinema" and "dangerous". Because his reputation was dented anyway, Schmidt came up with the plan to "try it on the other side" For example, the other day Schmidt told how things really went in the beginning, how he became a "doping doctor". The professional cycling team Milram had separated from him in 2010 as a team doctor, the former professional cyclist Bernhard Kohl had reported that Schmidt had already put him on the needle with the Gerolsteiner team. Allegations that Schmidt vehemently denies to this day; a court case was dropped at that time. Because his reputation was still badly dented, Schmidt now said, the thought had awakened in him to "try it on the other side". This motif, which insinuates that he was practically drawn into a gloomy biotope, resonated with him again and again in the end. Because doping is part of professional sport, he, the doctor, just wanted to help the athletes. Not that someone orders something themselves and negligently chases it into the bloodstream! But in the end doubts piled up about this supposedly high quality doping offer. Dirk Q., for example, one of Schmidt's more loyal helpers, who occasionally put the athletes on the needle himself: He was usually terribly nervous, so he finally said it after a long silence in his admission. Schmidt initially made himself available to him as a test subject, but there was "quite a mess" to put it in good German. When Q. stabbed an athlete for the first time, professional cyclist Stefan Denifl, Denifl said at some point that Q. should just let it go. Other helpers, such as Schmidt's father Ansgard, apparently mixed up the needles, which is why the treatments took longer. From a text message between Schmidt and Q., which was read out in court: "This is absolute ***!" "That can't happen! It's a business people pay a lot of money for!" Did Schmidt just want to cover his expenses? Or was it about the big win? The business. Yes, that was expensive, Schmidt repeatedly emphasized - expensive for him. Blood out of the athlete's body, separating red blood cells from the blood plasma with the centrifuge, filling, preserving with glycerol, transporting it through world history, then in Erfurt in the high-performance Hide heavy duty refrigerator; then the blood back into the athletes, before races in Austria, Italy, South Korea, USA. All the equipment, the necessary trips ... That Schmidt only wanted to cover his expenses, that he demanded a maximum of 5000 euros from athletes a year, mostly at least, as he initially stated? Dario Nemec, a Croat who has been a kind of co-captain in Schmidt's network over the years, said in court that Schmidt's price was strictly based on the income of the athletes. So less in terms of costs? Georg Preidler, a former professional cyclist from Austria, whose written confession they read in court during the week, recalled this: Schmidt had first given him a special price, 10,000 euros per season. But after that, Schmidt announced, he would probably have to calculate twice as much. But Preidler will then also earn 300,000 to 400,000 euros per year, thanks to Schmidt's all-round carefree package. The German doping doctor, your friend and helper? Preidler experienced the network as "perverse and insidious". Nemec, Schmidt's accomplice, fed him a free offer in 2017: It was two syringes, hidden in two ice packs in an orange juice bottle. "You recover better" - Nemec didn't want to say more. And Preidler then had no problem with infusing the unknown material. It was only later that he realized that he was now in debt to Nemec, said Preidler. And because the Croat insisted that he, Preidler, should try out this doctor, "the German" who takes care of the "top stars", he bite at some point.

That with the top stars is of course a bold thesis, with all the medium-sized cycling companies and trailblazers who have so far been fished from Schmidt's customer database. But it was well thought out, his all-round care. Often the clients passed on their blood values, which the doping investigators uploaded to the portal of the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada). The doctor knew exactly how much human albumin the athletes had to throw in so that their blood values did not fluctuate noticeably. The supposedly intelligent blood passport of the Wada? A better intelligence test. In all these years, not one of Schmidt's customers has surfed the net for anti-doping hunters. In addition, the doctor apparently prescribed all sorts of additional products; "Pens" with growth hormone; Molidustat, a variant of the blood accelerator Epo that was undetectable until 2017; TB 500 and TB 1000, a speed maker for horses. Other remedies keep appearing in messages and emails from Schmidt's clients, although it is unclear whether the doctor had anything to do with them. Including actually: Repoxygen. A gene preparation that stimulates the body to produce red blood cells and that one of Schmidt's cross-country skiers apparently consumed. Mario Thevis from the Cologne doping laboratory now told the BR that this was the first detailed indication that gene doping preparations were used in sport. However, the agent can also massively thicken the blood. Then the use would not only be useless, but also: highly dangerous. Speaking of dangerous: a week ago, after various experts had testified, Schmidt solved a riddle of this process. It was about the one case in which he was accused of serious bodily harm. Nemec accidentally procured him a research chemical in 2017: methemoglobin, useless for doping purposes, not sterile and not approved for humans. But Schmidt thought he was holding a preparation that supplies muscle cells with more oxygen. He injected the substance of the Austrian Christina Kollmann-Forstner, who was runner-up in the 2018 World Cup in the mountain bike marathon. She had trusted the doctor, eager for the next boost in performance - and lucky that the dose was so small that she got away with the chills. When it comes to blood doping, sports doctor Mark Schmidt always only had the health of his clients in mind. A former mountain biker raises doubts - and gives insights into the methods of the world's best. By Johannes Knuth Schmidt now meekly confessed that he had only casually studied the package, and that he was "a bit blind". Because he had heard that there was "something going on" in the cycling scene. A temporarily blind doping doctor looking for the new doping hit - what about his alleged motivation again: to protect athletes from negligently chasing substance into their bloodstream? That is of course the right of the accused: that he does not comment on many of these things in more detail because the still relatively new anti-doping law would possibly sanction him even more heavily. At the end of this process, however, many questions remain unanswered. What about the supposedly other, still unknown German customers in Schmidt's network that the professional cyclist Preidler mentioned during the week - when he informed the court in writing that he was unfortunately not available as a witness personally? Or the prominent alpine rider, against whom proceedings have since been discontinued - about the witnesses, whose statements were last read out in Munich, but provided astonishingly detailed information, through to alleged specific doping orders? Or the former German professional cyclist who, according to various chat protocols, is said to have dealt growth hormone and insulin together with a Schmidt customer? Or an as yet unknown Slovenian winter sportsman whom Diana S., one of Schmidt's assistants, allegedly treated? Four and a half to five and a half years, that's the prison sentence Schmidt is likely to expect. This is what the presiding judge Marion Tischler has now announced and also credited the 42-year-old with the fact that he gave comprehensive testimony and helped with the clarification. Dirk Q. expect a maximum of three years in prison, most of which will probably be offset against his pre-trial detention - from which he is expected to be released shortly before Christmas. This is one of the reasons why his defense probably refrained from hearing other witnesses in Munich. The pleadings are now expected for January 8th, a judgment on January 15th. Schmidt's other helpers will probably receive maximum suspended sentences.

After all, in one case the main defendant put a little stone in the big mosaic, like many of his previous speakers at the Munich II district court, former customers, helpers, accomplices: athletes and teams in the endurance sector constantly exchanged ideas about which material is currently in fashion and It cannot be tracked down: "The brothers know exactly what they are taking," said Schmidt. And at the end? Then win again the strongest.
 
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