Doping in XC skiing

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Johaug winning the 30k today with almost 2 minutes advantage over everyone with the trademark Froome style cadence. I think she has now won ever single distance event she has entered, probably would have won Tour de Ski as well but didn't race that for some reason.
 
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Lequack said:
Johaug winning the 30k today with almost 2 minutes advantage over everyone with the trademark Froome style cadence. I think she has now won ever single distance event she has entered, probably would have won Tour de Ski as well but didn't race that for some reason.
I'm wondering, how many viewers are still left watching this one woman show.
 
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Lequack said:
Johaug winning the 30k today with almost 2 minutes advantage over everyone with the trademark Froome style cadence. I think she has now won ever single distance event she has entered, probably would have won Tour de Ski as well but didn't race that for some reason.
Reminds me of Geneviève Jeanson, going solo from the start and building up a huge lead by the finish.

Being a cycling forum, we all know how that ended...
 
This wasn't even her most dominant win. She had scores of more dominant wins in the season before she was busted for doping. 2015/2016 was her best season, even if she didn't win every single race. In the Oslo 30km she won by 3:46 over Oestberg and 4:16 over Kylloenen who were 2nd and 3rd respectively. I've never seen anyone escape so quickly from the pack as Johaug did that day.
 
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I read a bit from the beginning of this thread and talking about history, there is one guy I am pondering about and I would like hear some thoughts - Per Elofsson. The popular image of him leaves an impression of a heroic fighter, who was battling against odds against doped skiers. Defeating the doped Isometsä and Mühlegg in Lahti 2001 pursuit. From "his" era, people talk about all his rivals as doping suspects, i.e Mühlegg, 'asthmatic' Norwegians, the Finns, the Russians, the Austrians, the Estonians. But not about Elofsson himself.

However, what has happened to Elofsson's health? His career derailed quickly and his health has gone worse ever since. After all, it is often also said that doping could have bad long-term effects for health. Is there an untold story about Per, which doesn't fit the official narrative?
 
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zarnack said:
I read a bit from the beginning of this thread and talking about history, there is one guy I am pondering about and I would like hear some thoughts - Per Elofsson. The popular image of him leaves an impression of a heroic fighter, who was battling against odds against doped skiers. Defeating the doped Isometsä and Mühlegg in Lahti 2001 pursuit. From "his" era, people talk about all his rivals as doping suspects, i.e Mühlegg, 'asthmatic' Norwegians, the Finns, the Russians, the Austrians, the Estonians. But not about Elofsson himself.

However, what has happened to Elofsson's health? His career derailed quickly and his health has gone worse ever since. After all, it is often also said that doping could have bad long-term effects for health. Is there an untold story about Per, which doesn't fit the official narrative?
Health issues can happen to anyone, and there are lots of certainly doped athletes who seem to be perfectly healthy.

A long term mycoplasma infection was the quoted reason for Elofsson's retirement. I do agree that his strongest years were a bit before the the EPO test really started catching athletes - he was generally a lot weaker in 2003 despite the world championship medals - so I have never really felt certain if Per only had good PR, or if he really was competing clean and beating the doped Finns in Lahti. I hope he was clean, and I hope his health still allows him to live a normal life.

However, there's another Swede I always had a soft spot for - Matthias Fredriksson, who suddenly won the World Cup total score in 2002-03. He was very, very occasionally on the podium before, but after the big busts of Salt Lake City he had his two best seasons around the age 29-30ish - perhaps a case of temporarily receding levels of doping revealing his natural talent?
 
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alternator said:
zarnack said:
I read a bit from the beginning of this thread and talking about history, there is one guy I am pondering about and I would like hear some thoughts - Per Elofsson. The popular image of him leaves an impression of a heroic fighter, who was battling against odds against doped skiers. Defeating the doped Isometsä and Mühlegg in Lahti 2001 pursuit. From "his" era, people talk about all his rivals as doping suspects, i.e Mühlegg, 'asthmatic' Norwegians, the Finns, the Russians, the Austrians, the Estonians. But not about Elofsson himself.

However, what has happened to Elofsson's health? His career derailed quickly and his health has gone worse ever since. After all, it is often also said that doping could have bad long-term effects for health. Is there an untold story about Per, which doesn't fit the official narrative?
Health issues can happen to anyone, and there are lots of certainly doped athletes who seem to be perfectly healthy.

A long term mycoplasma infection was the quoted reason for Elofsson's retirement. I do agree that his strongest years were a bit before the the EPO test really started catching athletes - he was generally a lot weaker in 2003 despite the world championship medals - so I have never really felt certain if Per only had good PR, or if he really was competing clean and beating the doped Finns in Lahti. I hope he was clean, and I hope his health still allows him to live a normal life.

However, there's another Swede I always had a soft spot for - Matthias Fredriksson, who suddenly won the World Cup total score in 2002-03. He was very, very occasionally on the podium before, but after the big busts of Salt Lake City he had his two best seasons around the age 29-30ish - perhaps a case of temporarily receding levels of doping revealing his natural talent?
+1
 
I was a big fan of Elofsson. He was very talented. His technique was very good, both classic and skating. He was also known for his training. He never fully recovered from the disappointments of the 2002 Olympics. He chased Mühlegg, but burned himself trying to do it and eventually he dropped out. He was close in the 15km classic and later moved up to bronze in the one day pursuit. He didn't race the relay in hopes of saving himself for the 50km but he had no shot in that race, with Mühlegg, Veerpalu, the Norwegians and Ivanov (who moved up to gold after Mühlegg's DQ).

The Swedes had a very poor Olympics as far as XC was concerned. They didn't have a bad team on paper, but Jonsson who won silver in the 50km in Nagano was past his prime I think, Ingesson was solid but a medal threat? No. Fredriksson was a massive disappointment after a string of impressive results in Lahti and of course Elofsson had a tough time, as I said. This was sprinter Björn Lind's real breakthrough. He made it to the sprint final (it was only 16 that qualified to the heats and only four in the final) and finished 4th.

Was Elofsson doping? I've always contended that top skiers and medal contenders were 'likely' all on something. To me, Elofsson was a bit like Jan Ullrich. He jumped in with the pros at a young age, he raced in the Olympics as a 20 year old (did quite well in Nagano) and dominated for three seasons or so. After the 2003 World's in Val Di Fiemme he was more or less done, retiring in 2004. It's a weird one to call, and the Swedes had poor results. But then again, the Russian men weren't as good as their women. They had individuals like Ivanov, Denisov, Vilisov, Krianin, Bolshakov, but like Elofsson, they didn't stick around too long. It was the Norwegians that were up at the top. The Finns, too, were very poor, but they were depleted and embarrassed after 2001 so their poor results were understandable. Sami Repo was the only notable distance skier in 2002 but he was not really at the top. Were the Finns clean that year? The Austrians and Estonians (even without the recent news) were always suspect in those years. Veerpalu and Mae especially.
 
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I also liked Elofsson, but retrospectively I have learnt to be sceptical about everything, lol.

What concerns the rise of Fredriksson, then I think it's worth noting around that time, after the Salt Lake season, there seemed to be a general change in skiing generations. In the season of 02-03 also Södergren, the Germans, Rotchev and Bauer became major forces. Unsure if the reasons were in any way related to doping or doping testing, but sometimes such generational changes happen.

Finns clean in 2002? Yeah, I could say so*. After the embarrassment, loss of sponsors and everyone's trust. But their results in Salt Lake were rubbish too, accordingly.

* - with one exception. Kaisa Varis. It was a miracle she escaped scot-free in the Lahti scandal. But despite that she went on to get caught multiple times in her career, so I'd say she was never 'clean'.
 
The dominance of Johaug

I would be interesting to hear your take on this. I have dug into the numbers of Johaug’s dominance this season, and have found out she is even more dominant than before the ban. People who thinks the Clostebol found in her body was an accident, will take this as a confirmation that she is clean. We, who are not accepting the official lip balm story, will continue to question a female athlete that is way more dominant than Armstrong, Mühlegg, Myllälä, Marion Jones etc. Since results in XC-skiing is dependent on numerous factors like technique and waxing, I have chosen to compare witth the best. The Norwegian skiers are the cream of the crop and they have same trainers, same waxing team and support. Since everyone can have a bad day (except Johaug), I have chosen to compare her results with the mean time of the second and third Norwegian, which by the way (especially 15/16) often is the same as the second and third on the podium. The numbers are remarkable. The season before she was banned, her victory time was 2.89% better than the mean time of the second and third Norwegian. This season (who has won all distance races she has participated in), she has been on average 2.97% better than the second and third Norwegian, which btw includes the world-cup leader. I did leave Tour de Ski out from the comparison, since Johaug did not participate this year. Looking forward to comments on this.

Season 15/16 (before doping ban) Mean time 2,89% better then second and third Norwegian.
Lahti 160221
1. TJ 38.59 (2339 s)
2. HW 40.05
3. IFÖ 40.31
Mean time 2 and 3: 2418 s
TJ 3,4% better

Falun 160214
1. TJ 23.28 (1408 s)
2.HW 23.36
3. AUJ 23.41
Mean time 2 and 3: 1418 s
TJ 0,7% better

Falun 160213
1. TJ 13.49 (829 s)
2. HW 14.07
3. IFÖ 14.18
Mean time 2 and 3: 852,5 s
TJ 2,8% better

Oslo 160207
1. TJ 1.24.55 (5095 s)
2. IFÖ 1.28.41
4. HW 1.29.36
Mean time 2 and 3: 5348,5 s
TJ 5% better

Nove Mesto 160123
1. TJ 25.09 (1509 s)
2. AUJ 25.13
5. RH 25.38
Mean time 2 and 3: 1525,5 s
TJ 1,1% better

Toblach 151220
1. TJ 27.22 (1642 s)
3. IFÖ 28.02
4. HW 28.07
Mean time 2 and 3: 1684 s
TJ 2,6% better

Davos 151212
1. TJ 35.40 (2140 s)
2. IFÖ 36.50
3. HW 36.55
Mean time 2 and 3: 2212,5 s
TJ 3,4% better

Lillehammer 151205
1. TJ 42.17 (2537 s)
2.HW 43.47
5. MKF 44.13
Mean time 2 and 3: 2640 s
TJ 4,1% better

Season 18/19 Mean time 2,97% better then second and third Norwegian.

Oslo 190312
1. TJ 1.18.54 (4734 s)
4. IFÖ 1.20.44
6. AUJ 1.21.26
Mean time 2 and 3: 4865 s
TJ 2,7% better

Seefeld 190302
1. TJ 1.14.26 (4466 s)
2. IFÖ 1.15.03
10. RH 1.16.51
Mean time 2 and 3: 4557 s
TJ 2.03% better

Seefeld 190226
1. TJ 27.02 (1622 s)
3. IFÖ 27.37
10. AUJ 28.11
Mean time 2 and 3: 1674 s
TJ 3,2% better

Seefeld 190223
1. TJ 36.54 (2214 s)
2. IFÖ 37.52
4. AUJ 37.56
Mean time 2 and 3: 2274 s
TJ 2,7% better

Ulricehamn 190126
1. TJ 25.48 (1548 s)
2. AUJ 26.11
6. IFÖ 26.46
Mean time 2 and 3: 1588,5 s
TJ 2,6% better

Otepää 190120
1. TJ 29.53 (1793 s)
5. IFÖ 31.08
7. AUJ 31.20
Mean time 2 and 3: 1874 s
TJ 4,5% better

Davos 181216
1. TJ 26.06 (1566 s)
2. IFÖ 26.19
11. RH 27,31
Mean time 2 and 3: 1615 s
TJ 3,1% better

Ruka 181125
1. TJ 28.02 (1682 s)
4. IFÖ 28.25
9. AUJ 29.18
Mean time 2 and 3: 1731,5 s
TJ 2,9% better
 
Going back to Biathlon WC. Has anyone noticed how Germans suddenly got faster. For me the outstanding improvement is Peiffer. It was noticeable in all his starts so far capped by gold medal. The German women is another category itself when Herrmann is style of Wilhelm and Neuner from the past suddenly become accurate in last standing shot to grab gold, flying on the tracks as well. This has been the story of decades with German biathlon taken to another level in Olympics or WCH. Anyone else feeling a bit suspicious?
 
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virenque216 said:
Going back to Biathlon WC. Has anyone noticed how Germans suddenly got faster. For me the outstanding improvement is Peiffer. It was noticeable in all his starts so far capped by gold medal. The German women is another category itself when Herrmann is style of Wilhelm and Neuner from the past suddenly become accurate in last standing shot to grab gold, flying on the tracks as well. This has been the story of decades with German biathlon taken to another level in Olympics or WCH. Anyone else feeling a bit suspicious?
Herrmann has always been fast skier, it's just that she has gradually learnt shooting too. By the way, apart from her and Dahlmeier no other German woman has been particularly impressive. Apart from Peiffer's gold no other German man has been in top 6 in individual events.

Personally I find the way Swedes nail their form for biathlon championships more impressive.

But you can find suspicious stuff in many things if you want. I think Germans in general have proven to be elite biathlon competitors for many decades, so I don't find their performance unusual. It would be unusual if they didn't win any golds, rather than if they won.
 
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Peiffer is skiing much faster now then all season. Only handful of men run faster,suddenly.
Herrmann is doing what Neuner or Willhelm did in past, out shooting everyone on last standing shot and then fly away home. This is down to managing the fatigue and holding the riffle still. I know its not unusual because they've been doing that for decades. An incredible efficiency in peeking at the right time. but a little suspicious in my eyes.

Herrmann has always been fast skier, it's just that she has gradually learnt shooting too. By the way, apart from her and Dahlmeier no other German woman has been particularly impressive. Apart from Peiffer's gold no other German man has been in top 6 in individual events.

Personally I find the way Swedes nail their form for biathlon championships more impressive.

But you can find suspicious stuff in many things if you want. I think Germans in general have proven to be elite biathlon competitors for many decades, so I don't find their performance unusual. It would be unusual if they didn't win any golds, rather than if they won.[/quote]
 
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Swedes are at home so they have targeted that championship. They are very good at shooting, but not so impressive on skis.
 
Leg 4 ski time:
1 Dahlmeier
2 Olsbu Røiseland +6,8
3 P Fialková +10,7
4 Yurlova-Percht +18,6
5 Braisaz +21,5

Leg 3 ski time:
1 Herrmann
2 Kuzmina +20,6
3 Eckhoff +29,4
4 Magnusson +56,7
5 Kaisheva +1'01,5

Obviously having 3 of the top 5 fastest skiers in the World Cup on the same leg makes the gap down to Magnusson, Kaisheva et al huge, but Herrmann's ski time is clearly a much bigger outlier than Laura's. Laura had a great final lap trying to chase down Semerenko, but her actual time relative to competition isn't THAT outstanding, especially as Røiseland stopped to get the flag and eased across the line, it's just the Laura last lap breakdown that we've seen time and again in the past. If anything, I think this was a return to business as usual for Dahlmeier, whereas Herrmann taking such significant time out of Nastya and Tiril is much, much more notable, especially as Tiril was fighting for the win. And this is time outside of the range, so doesn't include Tiril's penalty loop.
 
Am i right in the assumption that the sudden steep decline of Fourcade can not possibly be blamed on his age (like claimed in TV). I mean, he was still dominant last year (togehter with Boe). Sure, let Boes outrun him. Fair enough. But he is not even competitive at this stage anymore. Seems very odd to me.
 
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ppanther92 said:
Am i right in the assumption that the sudden steep decline of Fourcade can not possibly be blamed on his age (like claimed in TV). I mean, he was still dominant last year (togehter with Boe). Sure, let Boes outrun him. Fair enough. But he is not even competitive at this stage anymore. Seems very odd to me.
There is clearly something that isn't normal, he says so himself. He can't even shoot straight anymore, but that may be related to lack of motivation given his disappointing results.
 
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frenchfry said:
ppanther92 said:
Am i right in the assumption that the sudden steep decline of Fourcade can not possibly be blamed on his age (like claimed in TV). I mean, he was still dominant last year (togehter with Boe). Sure, let Boes outrun him. Fair enough. But he is not even competitive at this stage anymore. Seems very odd to me.
There is clearly something that isn't normal, he says so himself. He can't even shoot straight anymore, but that may be related to lack of motivation given his disappointing results.
A minor injury or sickness in the offseason, some overtraining, perhaps an undetected virus infection... and suddenly you have a completely miserable season.

Although, of course, Northug is not much older than Fourcade, and he pretty much fell off, never to recover, at the age Fourcade is now. A decade of constant hard competition at the very top, with several years of very hard training already before that, and maybe their bodies just can't recover any more. Of that generation of skiers, Cologna seems like a shadow of his old self, as well, and Hellner already quit.
 
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frenchfry said:
ppanther92 said:
Am i right in the assumption that the sudden steep decline of Fourcade can not possibly be blamed on his age (like claimed in TV). I mean, he was still dominant last year (togehter with Boe). Sure, let Boes outrun him. Fair enough. But he is not even competitive at this stage anymore. Seems very odd to me.
There is clearly something that isn't normal, he says so himself. He can't even shoot straight anymore, but that may be related to lack of motivation given his disappointing results.
I think the bad shooting is also party a direct consequence of his bad shape. To stay with competitors/lose not too much time he probably just has to go pretty deep or at least way deeper as in his prime. And that will not give him the best condition for the shooting.
 
Another monster win by Johaug. She didn't comment the doping scandal in Seefeld before, but now she is ready.
https://www.expressen.se/sport/langdskidor/johaug-forfarligt-hor-inte-hemma-har/

"My starting point is that no one that starts in a race is not involved in things like this. I do only focus on myself and my own task". Way to go Johaug! We love you. :lol:

"I'm glad that a lot of work is going on behind the curtains. Evidently there is a lot going on that we are not aware of." Really? :eek:
 

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