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Doping in the American pro peleton.

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BigBoat said:
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.

I have not been to Super Week, but Nevada City is not a criterium. They may call it a criterium, but it is a circuit race. No free laps. And virtually EVERYBODY gets dropped. Having only 6 or 7 riders finish on the same lap as the leader is the norm at Nevada City. You can get lapped twice and still make money.

Kevin
 
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Ninety5rpm said:
For crying out loud, why is it so hard for supposed cycling enthusiasts to spell peloton correctly?

Just remember: there is no Pele in peloton.
Another bust by the spelling police. Give that man a pat on the back.
 
Jul 7, 2009
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Hi all,
This just takes a bit of common sense and keeping your eyes open. I don't think the usage is anywhere near 90%, nor do I feel it is anywhere low as 10%. And what is being used varies just as much as what the race is. However, I still think you can kick *** being clean and that all the doping in the world, by itself, will not make you a world beater.

A short aside: I remember the shift that occurred when caffeine and sudafed became legal (caffeine was legal, but only to a certain "limit"). For a while people were so wired they could barely handle their bike (they'd be all shaky and jittery) :D

I know of a few guys who were taking DHEA and some other stuff (roids or test), and they only raced the local series. But let's face it, there was still some money and fame, and that stuff is pretty cheap.
 
I'm from Ireland so can't comment on the US Pro situation. However, Mark Scanlon from Ireland rode the 2004 Tour with AG2R and won the World Juniors in 1998. He left Europe because of doping and joined the Toyota team in the US in the hope that a clean sport beckoned. He was wrong and quit completely not long after joining. So that's all I have to say on that!!!!
 
Izoard said:
Hi all,
I don't think the usage is anywhere near 90%, ...
And the basis for this thought is ...???

Izoard said:
However, I still think you can kick *** being clean and that all the doping in the world, by itself, will not make you a world beater.
Do you think someone can kick *** in a grand tour being clean? You don't think the recovery advantages of doping matter enough?

For sure all the doping in the world will not, by itself, make me as fast as these guys. You need everything... natural talent and ability, hard and smart work, strong team, and smart doping.
 
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Central America

What about Mexico and Central America? My impression is that doping is very common, especially in Costa Rica, Guatemala and Mexico. Does anyone have any direct experience?
 
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Ninety5rpm said:
And the basis for this thought is ...???

Just my opinions based on what I see when I race and what I hear when I chat with other riders. In other words, no "proof", just my opinon.

Do you think someone can kick *** in a grand tour being clean? You don't think the recovery advantages of doping matter enough?

Sorry, I meant local pro races ... so I am not referring to pretty much anything in Europe, never mind a GT!

For sure all the doping in the world will not, by itself, make me as fast as these guys. You need everything... natural talent and ability, hard and smart work, strong team, and smart doping.

Sorry Ninety5rpm, I should have been more clear. My opinon is only based on the more local scene. And like I noted earlier, it is very much dependent on the race. For what it's worth, I think the bigger the stakes, the more dope use and the stronger (more advanced) the dope use is.
 
Jul 14, 2009
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Joe P you can clear up lots of stuff for these people.Lots of us spent years racing our bikes without real jobs*because prime money and sponsor/club cash was the sole source of income still does not make you a pro.Getting some start money for a hamlets race is nice but it doesn't make you a pro.Visalia,Redlands,Superweek,Sommerville,none of them had control(drug test) raced in Belgium,France and Germany and got a couple of results but never a pee/blood test.People belly ache about paying 30 bucks for a 40 min parking lot crit.Can you imagine what cycling is coming to if even a stud Jr that is killing it has his every result looked at with people saying"he juiced".The federations are making a mockery of testing and leaking results.I admire people who try and help cyclists get to the next level of racing.If everybody thinks they are a couple of injections from being a pro,they are high.I knew guys that had to wear sunglasses because their pupils where beamed but most people are just trying to get better and faster.Please try and put who is a better bike handler jazz to sleep,A guy with a pro license is a good bike handler.period
 
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riobonito92 said:
What about Mexico and Central America? My impression is that doping is very common, especially in Costa Rica, Guatemala and Mexico. Does anyone have any direct experience?

The best pot I ever smoked was from there.(its been 18 years since I touched the stuff) Does that help?
 
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joe_papp said:
In 2005, 100% of my US team was doped (speaking of the UCI license-holding seniors, and no other affiliated riders).

Wow, and you guys still sucked. Maybe there is more than 10%. Strip out the foreigners, and anybody currently over 30, and I will stick to my less than 10%.
 

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joe_papp said:
In 2005, 100% of my US team was doped (speaking of the UCI license-holding seniors, and no other affiliated riders).

Joe,

I think that you have said that your Italian team also had organized doping. I always wanted to ask you some questions about that.

It appears your team did many of the larger Grandfondos, you even won GF Pinarello. Good job. I know these have exploded in popularity over the last few years. I usually race 3-5 a year and am always surprised by the competition level.

What was the sponsors goal with sponsoring your team? Was it more of a hobby/tax write off for the owner? what was the budget? How would you compare the competition level to the US pro races?
 
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Hooptie said:
Wow, and you guys still sucked. Maybe there is more than 10%. Strip out the foreigners, and anybody currently over 30, and I will stick to my less than 10%.

8 posts in and you are already one of the biggest pricks to have ever posted here. And you mother said you would never amount to anything...
 
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joe_papp said:
In 2005, 100% of my US team was doped (speaking of the UCI license-holding seniors, and no other affiliated riders).
When I came up with 90% I am assuming there are entire teams racing clean. But I could be wrong.
 
Eva Maria said:
...
What was the sponsors goal with sponsoring your team? Was it more of a hobby/tax write off for the owner? what was the budget? How would you compare the competition level to the US pro races?

I wasn't the team's business manager and I didn't negotiate the sponsorship contracts, so I can't definitively state what the sponsorship goals were. That said, I believe that there were two primary drivers: 1) favorable tax treatment (for a company owned or directed by cycling enthusiasts) and 2) media exposure and brand enhancement for those sponsors more directly connected to cycling industry (there IS significant coverage of all cycling, including GF's, in Italy - and our team would usually be on TV weekly and in print monthly).

The level of racing...the one-day GF's I did in Italy were harder than any 1-day race I've ridden in the US. Now, I never rode Thrift Drug Classic, Philly, Kmart WV, that crazy 150mile climbing race in Colorado, or ... but I can't think of a single race in the USA that I rode that was more challenging than any of the GF's I raced in Italy. That's NOT to say that I didn't suffer or experience as much pain in the USA as I did in Italy. But with respect to the interplay between the difficulty of the course, the quality of the riders and the speed of the bunch, nothing was as hard in the USA as it was in Italy. So that I don't get flamed, I'm in no way dissing US riders, or saying that the racing is easy in USA. Quite the contrary. It's often times as fast as in UCI stage races, if not faster. But the races are typically shorter here, so the suffering doesn't last as long. But in Italy we were racing 200km events that included on average 4-5 significant (8km+) climbs, in fields made up of exD1 pros, dilettantes, and current pros. Whilst I was there, on my squad was a Vuelta stage winner, a guy who'd ridden four Tours of Italy for Saeco, up-and-coming future pro's from Latin America...it was hard, hard racing at incredible speeds. Heck, Raimondas Rumsas and his henchmen were our #1 rivals... :eek:
 
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Thoughtforfood said:
8 posts in and you are already one of the biggest pricks to have ever posted here. And you mother said you would never amount to anything...

Thats quite an honor. Sorry that sounded a bit harsh, but I was assuming Joe was talking about the UPMC-ACT team...they hardly lit the domestic scene on fire. I respect Joe for coming clean and being so open on this forum.

And ignorant? Ok, how come nobody calls BigBoat ignorant for claiming 90% of domestic Cat 1's are on EPO?
 
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Hooptie said:
Thats quite an honor. Sorry that sounded a bit harsh, but I was assuming Joe was talking about the UPMC-ACT team...they hardly lit the domestic scene on fire. I respect Joe for coming clean and being so open on this forum.

And ignorant? Ok, how come nobody calls BigBoat ignorant for claiming 90% of domestic Cat 1's are on EPO?

Gotta agree with Hooptie in our neighborhood. Cat 1's are pretty clean here but occassionally one will jump up in class in a way that can't be accounted for. I'll give you 10% for the NW US. Not including Canada; don't know what their up to, if anything.
 
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Dear Papp,The point I was unsuccessfully trying to make is that to race your bike for a living is a sh#tload of work and even more sacrifice. Every BB and people that think that drugs will get you there are wrong and misinformed.Talent is needed and a great work ethic on top of some luck.The methods that are used to find people who are using are ruining what tidbits of respect that the bike racing has left. All the heavy users I knew used all the time,there was not an used bottle laying around waiting for a little boost,on a very,very special occasion.They can also approach the drug makers about putting a tag in their blend to ID the most common abused substances(cera,micera,ect) Bike racing is a hard line of work.Tyler Hamilton may be the best model for a coach,He knows what not to do and how much mistakes can ruin a great future.
 

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joe_papp said:
I wasn't the team's business manager and I didn't negotiate the sponsorship contracts, so I can't definitively state what the sponsorship goals were. That said, I believe that there were two primary drivers: 1) favorable tax treatment (for a company owned or directed by cycling enthusiasts) and 2) media exposure and brand enhancement for those sponsors more directly connected to cycling industry (there IS significant coverage of all cycling, including GF's, in Italy - and our team would usually be on TV weekly and in print monthly).

The level of racing...the one-day GF's I did in Italy were harder than any 1-day race I've ridden in the US. Now, I never rode Thrift Drug Classic, Philly, Kmart WV, that crazy 150mile climbing race in Colorado, or ... but I can't think of a single race in the USA that I rode that was more challenging than any of the GF's I raced in Italy. That's NOT to say that I didn't suffer or experience as much pain in the USA as I did in Italy. But with respect to the interplay between the difficulty of the course, the quality of the riders and the speed of the bunch, nothing was as hard in the USA as it was in Italy. So that I don't get flamed, I'm in no way dissing US riders, or saying that the racing is easy in USA. Quite the contrary. It's often times as fast as in UCI stage races, if not faster. But the races are typically shorter here, so the suffering doesn't last as long. But in Italy we were racing 200km events that included on average 4-5 significant (8km+) climbs, in fields made up of exD1 pros, dilettantes, and current pros. Whilst I was there, on my squad was a Vuelta stage winner, a guy who'd ridden four Tours of Italy for Saeco, up-and-coming future pro's from Latin America...it was hard, hard racing at incredible speeds. Heck, Raimondas Rumsas and his henchmen were our #1 rivals... :eek:

Thanks for the input Joe.

While I am old and fat now I lived in Italy 20 years ago and was always surprised by the insane speed. Now that I just have fun riding the GF's it is shocking how deep the competition is in those races. It looks like you had some good results over there, could you make much money doing it? How extensive was the team doping?