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Doping in the American pro peleton.

So I'm definitely new at this. however, we have all heard about doping in the pro peleton amongst the best in the world. what about doping in the American pro peleton since it is so far removed from euro race seen. I've had the chance to race against many american pros and doping controls can't possibly be as tight as they are at the big euro races. or is doping just not in the american cycling culture. have to say there are probably a few masters racers out there on the juice. what are your guys thoughts on doping in the american pro peleton since it is basically d3 squads.
 
Jul 7, 2009
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In my opinion it is fairly widespread. Not as bad as some would say, but not just a few "bad apples" either. I typically see it more with guys who suddenly get a fair bit bigger and more ripped over one off season (really, just lifting more weights!) and go around smoking everyone in crits. The talented riders still tend to rise to the top, but you sometimes see some pretty "interesting" improvements ;)
 
Mar 19, 2009
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The impression I've gotten is the vast majority of good cat 1 guys that win races are on epo. Maybe 90% of pros in the USA are doped. But then again many have been clean and seen success. Doping is cheating and riders who have been clean certainly do feel cheated. And righfully so.

The problem with these more minor riders is that they are not tested out of competition so they can go all the way to high 50s on EPO if they wish. They can also use drugs like Nolvedex and synthetic testosterone that would be detectable in european pros. But then again the europeans blood dope with their own blood which has the same effect. American riders & Masters amateurs dope usage is rampent. I think I remember reading somewhere the 45 year old Masters nationl Road race champ of the USA had 5.5 watts per kilo at FTP which would have gotten top 50 in last years Tour de France.
 
Aug 4, 2009
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This is my first time on a forum, as these things are usually fun to read and laugh at but not worth the time to respond. However, this complete sh*t from BigBoat changed my mind.

I've been racing as a US pro for some time now and if you seriously think 90% are on drugs then you're absolutely ***. Where the hell do you come up with these numbers? Have you ever raced a bike competitively? If you need to take drugs to win a cat 1 race then you don't belong at the sports highest level and should realize it. You sound like some talentless guy who made up for his mediocrity over the years by saying that everyone else was on drugs. This is probably the last time I post anything, so I'm just asking you to please quit spreading rumors about us and get back to your day job, you obviously know nothing about cycling.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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I just lost some faith in this forum. StrungOut nailed it. I wouldn't even believe 10% of US domestic pros dope. The ones that do are fairly obvious...Obee, Leogrande, Stevic. These guys could win at will.

There is no doping culture in the US, sure there are people who dope, but there is no culture.

There is quite a bit of testing in the US, and a huge shift towards out of competition testing including strict whereabouts.
http://www.usantidoping.org/what/stats/quarterly.aspx

I am as cynical as it gets and will be the first to heckle the Floyds, Tylers and Armstrongs, but they stopped representing the domestic peloton 10 years ago. I truly believe US domestic racing is probably the cleanest racing on the planet (I guess thats not really saying much). It may not have been 10-15 years ago, but there has been a big shift in the last 5 years.

We want a clean champ...Phinney is rocking the dopers suck hat @ Worlds, Pate is riding the breaks @ the Tour, Tuft is on the podium @ Worlds...we are getting close.
 
StrungOut said:
This is my first time on a forum, as these things are usually fun to read and laugh at but not worth the time to respond. However, this complete sh*t from BigBoat changed my mind.

I've been racing as a US pro for some time now and if you seriously think 90% are on drugs then you're absolutely ***. Where the hell do you come up with these numbers? Have you ever raced a bike competitively? If you need to take drugs to win a cat 1 race then you don't belong at the sports highest level and should realize it. You sound like some talentless guy who made up for his mediocrity over the years by saying that everyone else was on drugs. This is probably the last time I post anything, so I'm just asking you to please quit spreading rumors about us and get back to your day job, you obviously know nothing about cycling.

I, too, have ridden in the US Pro-Am circuit, but back in the 90's. Then I came to Italy and saw how widespread doping was among ametuers and pros.

That a winning Cat I would choose to dope is ludicrous is naive...I don't buy it. I'm sure that doping among top ams and the pros in the US today is fairly widespread, just like in any sport. What percentage I couldn't say. And I'm not someone who is trying to make up for my losses, as I'm happy with what I achieved and got out of the sport.

We don't know anything about who you are, other than you say are a pro in the US who, aparantly, doesn't dope. But don't take your very prsonal habits and try and convince us that most of the guys don't dope, or, if they needed to as Cat I's, have no business riding as pros (presumably because they lack talent).

Not true, if you look at how things work in Europe. Lots of talented guys dope as amatuers before turning pro. Normally the difference being that if it were just the doping explaining their results, then they'd have a very short pro career. But that doesn't mean that they were the only ones doing it. And I can't see after Armstrong that there are still major differences in how cycling is done between the US and Europe these days.
 
Mar 13, 2009
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Hooptie said:
I just lost some faith in this forum. StrungOut nailed it. I wouldn't even believe 10% of US domestic pros dope. The ones that do are fairly obvious...Obee, Leogrande, Stevic. These guys could win at will.

There is no doping culture in the US, sure there are people who dope, but there is no culture.

There is quite a bit of testing in the US, and a huge shift towards out of competition testing including strict whereabouts.
http://www.usantidoping.org/what/stats/quarterly.aspx

I am as cynical as it gets and will be the first to heckle the Floyds, Tylers and Armstrongs, but they stopped representing the domestic peloton 10 years ago. I truly believe US domestic racing is probably the cleanest racing on the planet (I guess thats not really saying much). It may not have been 10-15 years ago, but there has been a big shift in the last 5 years.

We want a clean champ...Phinney is rocking the dopers suck hat @ Worlds, Pate is riding the breaks @ the Tour, Tuft is on the podium @ Worlds...we are getting close.
hang on, is this the same Phinney, who is a house guest of Armstrong, and Armstrong sets up a team around him? The same who twitters about being drugtested. Who do you think inspired him to twitter drugtesting? If Phinney wants to attach himself to Armstrong, that does not say he dopes, but it says alot more, than wearing a dopers suck hat. It means the hat should be put in a good will clothing bin.
 
Jun 16, 2009
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The formula is simple:

Massive cash prizes / professional salaries + no doping controls + human nature + readily available doping products & culture of steroid use across all major sports at all levels = widespread doping

I am European and have never raced in the US, but I know clean Euro elite riders who have tried it, and they were absolutely blown away by how fast it was, especially crits. I know one guy who has since gone on to ride pro here in Europe - 2 years ago he was getting dropped after 15 mins in a US crit...
 
Mar 19, 2009
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Hooptie said:
We want a clean champ...Phinney is rocking the dopers suck hat @ Worlds, Pate is riding the breaks @ the Tour, Tuft is on the podium @ Worlds...we are getting close.
I believe all those you mentioned are dopers.
Mongol_Waaijer said:
The formula is simple:

Massive cash prizes / professional salaries + no doping controls + human nature + readily available doping products & culture of steroid use across all major sports at all levels = widespread doping

I am European and have never raced in the US, but I know clean Euro elite riders who have tried it, and they were absolutely blown away by how fast it was, especially crits. I know one guy who has since gone on to ride pro here in Europe - 2 years ago he was getting dropped after 15 mins in a US crit...
Yeah! "+1"
 
Jun 16, 2009
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BigBoat said:
The impression I've gotten is the vast majority of good cat 1 guys that win races are on epo.

. American riders & Masters amateurs dope usage is rampent. I think I remember reading somewhere the 45 year old Masters nationl Road race champ of the USA had 5.5 watts per kilo at FTP which would have gotten top 50 in last years Tour de France.

I know a couple of guys who win/place consistently and are not on EPO
maybe others are but these guys are clean & consistent so it is possible

As far as masters, some guys like Thurlow have never slowed down.
As a runner I know runners of the same relative age as thurlow 45+ who are as fast as they ever were. there are guys in their 40's on the verge of running sub 4 for the mile and they are not on drugs.
Its more of a generational thing, the best generation of high school runners were the 60's, 70's and early 80's. The guys from the 60's are too old now but the 40 -50 year olds are still plenty fast.
Cycling is the same, Greg Lemonds & Thurlow Rogers generation pretty darned good and still good
 
Mar 18, 2009
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Onlyiftheytestpositive said:
What are your guys thoughts on doping in the american pro peleton since it is basically d3 squads.

I've seen it first-hand in a domestic pro team* I worked for earlier this year, so yes, there is doping in the domestic scene, but it's hard to say how prevalent it is. A few riders on one team isn't enough to say "90%", but I'd bet it's more than 10%.


*I'm not going to "out" the team or riders, as I have no concrete evidence to support my accusation and it would just be my word against theirs'. I know what I saw and I didn't stay with the team much longer as a result, but I can't prove it so it isn't worth naming names.
 
Jul 14, 2009
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I have to go with ruborama,not everybody is juiced.BB where do you get these stats?You paint your boat with a very big brush.And where are all these pros? Cat 1 is not a pro.Cat 1 used to be for National Team members,TR could be 60 years old and still put out wattage that would make you suspect,for that matter their are guys who are 60+ that have always put up numbers that would make the untrained think it was a miracle or had to involve drugs.There is a handful of racers making lots of money the rest struggle not to get a "real" job.Their are not hundreds of guys making a living as a pro bike racer in the US.And yes Super Week is different than a standard Belgium kermese,but American racers struggle much more there than any good euro struggles here.TR has been putting out mega watts from his Levi days and for sure with Subaru Montgomery when Lance was his team mate.Be careful who you slam.I know a hero when I see one and Thurlow is a hero.And that other guy has been spending too much time at Swami's.
 
StrungOut said:
This is probably the last time I post anything, so I'm just asking you to please quit spreading rumors about us and get back to your day job, you obviously know nothing about cycling.
I'm hoping you do keep reading, and keep posting, and showing your point of view. It may not be the same as others, but that doesn't mean it isn't valid.

Would encourage you, or anyone else, to join and take a look at Cutting Edge Muscle's website. You may argue some banter on there is BS, but most of it has too strong of a ring of truth, and very factual information.

I have less concrete info than others on here, and have been out of the loop for too long, but I refuse to believe that the number is as low as 10%.
 
Jul 16, 2009
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lets not kid ourselves

it is there is abundance. look at o'bee and ANYONE who has had contact with the euro pro tour. us postal team was sick and they spread the doping virus this side of the pond
 
Go on the forums at http://www.cuttingedgemuscle.com, you'll find some things that are fairly interesting.

I raced at the same level as Strungout for several years (as a D3 rider...which seldom means "pro" in my books). I had teammates use (with one busted) and some of those guys still use. It's more common than you think. Is it cleaner than Europe? I think so, though I think there may have been some changes in the lower-end racing since I was there racing.

I'm not calling Strungout a liar by any means, I think his comments reflect his personal experiences, which is good. But I've seen things with my own eyes that make me believe differently. I think it would be useful to go back and have a look at the history of positives in the US as a start and then look at the reputations of certain riders (they don't get them for nothing!). That may give a ballpark idea.
 
Jun 26, 2009
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I first raced in the USA in 1982 and can honestly say that back then I saw no evidence of a PED culture at all. There may have been a handful who had raced in Europe who were onto it but thats all. But then again at that time most americans struggled to race around a square block without running into each other either. As American cycling matured so did the PED use and while its difficult to put a percentage figure on it, its reasonable to assume its nowhere near the scale of Europe but still prevailent just the same.
 
Jul 6, 2009
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i have followed thurlows wheel many times on the simi training ride he is very fast i must say he often wins cat 1 races and also masters races impressive rider.:eek:
 
Jul 19, 2009
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Mongol_Waaijer said:
The formula is simple:

Massive cash prizes / professional salaries + no doping controls + human nature + readily available doping products & culture of steroid use across all major sports at all levels = widespread doping

I am European and have never raced in the US, but I know clean Euro elite riders who have tried it, and they were absolutely blown away by how fast it was, especially crits. I know one guy who has since gone on to ride pro here in Europe - 2 years ago he was getting dropped after 15 mins in a US crit...

I'm just an American Cat. 2. However, my friends who have raced over in Belgium had 2 things to say.

1) Generally, everyone's unbelievably strong.
2) European riders tend not to be as good at drivin' the bike in the corners.

American crit racing is all about touching the brakes as little as possible, so learning how to corner at top speed is a prerequisite to finishing a fast crit.

It's entirely possible that the guy who was getting dropped after 15 mins in a crit was trying to bring Kermis-style racing (ride the brakes into a corner then sprint out of it) to American Crits... that's just not a good idea. You can't possibly burn that many matches and expect to survive more than 15 or 20 mins, because there may be as many as 6 corners on a 1k course.

It's a different style of racing. It definitely takes a little while to get used to it. It does NOT necessarily mean that these guys are doped.
 
Mar 18, 2009
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dienekes88 said:
I'm just an American Cat. 2. However, my friends who have raced over in Belgium had 2 things to say.

1) Generally, everyone's unbelievably strong.
2) European riders tend not to be as good at drivin' the bike in the corners.

American crit racing is all about touching the brakes as little as possible, so learning how to corner at top speed is a prerequisite to finishing a fast crit.

It's entirely possible that the guy who was getting dropped after 15 mins in a crit was trying to bring Kermis-style racing (ride the brakes into a corner then sprint out of it) to American Crits... that's just not a good idea. You can't possibly burn that many matches and expect to survive more than 15 or 20 mins, because there may be as many as 6 corners on a 1k course.

It's a different style of racing. It definitely takes a little while to get used to it. It does NOT necessarily mean that these guys are doped.

I have race elite crits in both the US and the Netherlands in the middle/late 80s. What I saw/felt was that the crits were just as fast in the Netherlands as in the states. Things may have changed by now, but I don't know how much. I also find it very hard to believe that Europeans can't drive into the corners as well as in the US. They race crits in Europe as well....as a matter of fact the first Crit I did in the Netherlands had 8 corners...which leads me to believe they can corner. Oh yea, it was crazy fast.

I don't think that the doping issue in the US is as hard core as Europe...but it may be heading in that direction. I hope not!!
 
Jun 19, 2009
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TRDean said:
I have race elite crits in both the US and the Netherlands in the middle/late 80s. What I saw/felt was that the crits were just as fast in the Netherlands as in the states. Things may have changed by now, but I don't know how much. I also find it very hard to believe that Europeans can't drive into the corners as well as in the US. They race crits in Europe as well....as a matter of fact the first Crit I did in the Netherlands had 8 corners...which leads me to believe they can corner. Oh yea, it was crazy fast.

I don't think that the doping issue in the US is as hard core as Europe...but it may be heading in that direction. I hope not!!

Have raced with Euros and Aussies that were Crit specialists and they were capable of handling the riding style. They were also the most suspicious in their improvement curve. I'd see them at early stage races getting dropped at races with no testing and three weeks later they are winning on the other coast. In the 90's and 00's many would take their Ensenada "vacation" right before the early races. As Cat 1's, 2's we could take them prior to the juice providing benefits. Not all were doing it but you could pick out the USPS, Coors, Spago, etc. riders that had surprising improvements.

As for Masters-Thurlow has always been a mutant. I'm convinced he's the real deal. Several others like Wayne Stetina are class acts and aren't dominant when they lack time to train. There is a percentage that don't look normal and probably aren't. Naturally talented riders can still beat them in shorter, hard events. Look to the TT's for the inexplicable Master performances.
 
Jul 19, 2009
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TRDean said:
I have race elite crits in both the US and the Netherlands in the middle/late 80s. What I saw/felt was that the crits were just as fast in the Netherlands as in the states. Things may have changed by now, but I don't know how much. I also find it very hard to believe that Europeans can't drive into the corners as well as in the US. They race crits in Europe as well....as a matter of fact the first Crit I did in the Netherlands had 8 corners...which leads me to believe they can corner. Oh yea, it was crazy fast.

I don't think that the doping issue in the US is as hard core as Europe...but it may be heading in that direction. I hope not!!

It's possible that the Dutch are better at it, but it has a lot to do with the racing style. These guys were talking mostly about Belgian riders... and maybe some French? Even a guy well-known for being a crap bike handler was surprised at the tentative cornering in the kermis races.

I absolutely believe that it's crazy fast. That's one of the things that everyone mentioned (as I said in my other post): those guys ride like they're on mopeds.
 
Mongol_Waaijer said:
The formula is simple:

Massive cash prizes / professional salaries + no doping controls + human nature + readily available doping products & culture of steroid use across all major sports at all levels = widespread doping

I am European and have never raced in the US, but I know clean Euro elite riders who have tried it, and they were absolutely blown away by how fast it was, especially crits. I know one guy who has since gone on to ride pro here in Europe - 2 years ago he was getting dropped after 15 mins in a US crit...

I don't know how much dope is or isn't used in the US domestic pro peleton. But I do know that your friend is either the worlds worst bike handler or he was jet lagged or he had no speed whatsoever. I'm 48, not on dope and can still easily ride near the front of pro/1 crits in California. On my second race of the day after doing the geezer race. It's fast, but not THAT fast. Yeah, NRC crits are faster, but I've done plenty of those (also without dope, as always) and the only guys getting dropped were either fat and out of shape or didn't know how to ride their bikes.

Kevin
 
Mar 19, 2009
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nslckevin said:
I don't know how much dope is or isn't used in the US domestic pro peleton. But I do know that your friend is either the worlds worst bike handler or he was jet lagged or he had no speed whatsoever. I'm 48, not on dope and can still easily ride near the front of pro/1 crits in California. On my second race of the day after doing the geezer race. It's fast, but not THAT fast. Yeah, NRC crits are faster, but I've done plenty of those (also without dope, as always) and the only guys getting dropped were either fat and out of shape or didn't know how to ride their bikes.

Kevin
Thats not quite true though...It depends on how "flat" the race is. $hit Grandma could keep up if it was totally flat.

A really good crit with a hill and some tight corners will have alot of DNFs. Look at the race Lance won right before the Tour. Or some of the Super week series races.