Everyone dopes

Jul 21, 2012
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http://stevetilford.com/2014/12/04/drugdope-testing-is-a-joke-in-sport/

I know, by personal observation, and studies, how much better today’s doping products make an athlete. So when the Russians don’t sweep the podium in all the sports it shows that they aren’t the only ones using drugs.

And how many positive tests were there? It is hard to find, but here at Wiki, they show around 15 athletes were caught doping before or during London. And there were 8 caught in Sochi. Only one of those 23 were Russian, a discus thrower.

Russia led the medal count at their Olympics this past year. And not one of their athletes tested positive. And the documentary says that 99% of their athletes were doping.
Now this. In cycling, all the riders are trying to convince the public that the sport is so clean. But, 99% of the Russian athletes, which I assume includes all the Russian cyclists, are on a doping program. And the Russian guys aren’t smearing all the other professionals cyclists, so it doesn’t take a brain surgeon to realize that cycling still has big issues.
 
Apr 20, 2012
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Steve isnt afraid to address the address.

Doping is like Formula One; ban some kind of aid and the engineers/doctors will find something new.
 
Well that is a very intelligent piece and I think few of those who disagree with Mr Tilford will be able to poke any holes in it.

I would add that Russia is only the 2nd successful country from the 2012 olympics to be caught doping their athletes.

There's a little Carribean island which won a lot of gold medals and made a lot of posters and adverts, where it was not so long ago revealed the local sports authorities did not think it was important to test their athletes.
 
The Hitch said:
Well that is a very intelligent piece and I think few of those who disagree with Mr Tilford will be able to poke any holes in it.

I would add that Russia is only the 2nd successful country from the 2012 olympics to be caught doping their athletes.

There's a little Carribean island which won a lot of gold medals and made a lot of posters and adverts, where it was not so long ago revealed the local sports authorities did not think it was important to test their athletes.
But there's way less satisfaction with the situation in Jamaica (and Kenya, now). The way Russia was blown up, the evidence clearly implicated individuals, both athletes and officials. With Jamaica, the revelations only served to cast a shadow on the team. Even Powell and Simpson got off the hook, and they should have been a sure-thing.

Even if we are counting on WADA, IOC, UCI, IAAF... etc. to take action, there is way more hope that justice will be served to at least the most egregious Russian dopers.
 
Oct 16, 2010
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The Hitch said:
There's a little Carribean island which won a lot of gold medals and made a lot of posters and adverts, where it was not so long ago revealed the local sports authorities did not think it was important to test their athletes.
What came to the fore in Hajo's documentary was that Russia (and by extension the corrupt IAAF members) don't mind smaller insignificant sheep testing positive but will do anything in their power to protect the big guns. Major parallel, it seems, with Jamaica/Bolt.

(it also reminded me of the Astana/Nibali situation, btw)
 
Mar 13, 2009
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Fearless Greg Lemond said:
Steve isnt afraid to address the address.

Doping is like Formula One; ban some kind of aid and the engineers/doctors will find something new.
game theory in economics.


there should be a rule-of-thumb positive doping proportion. When tests improve a little without the new products (that are indeed always entering the system) either athletes back off their intake, or stop taking that, and take an alternative.

If they have a better hit rate of 1 in 50 tests in OOC testing, (arbitrary number), then the peloton, or competitive pool of athletes being testing, refines their doping, so they wont test positive.

the aim of doping for performance enhancement, is NOT to be caught. If the tests start to work, then the athletes will make a new risk equation, wrt willingness to be caught/risk &likelihood/prevalence
 
the sceptic said:
I know, by personal observation, and studies, how much better today’s doping products make an athlete. So when the Russians don’t sweep the podium in all the sports it shows that they aren’t the only ones using drugs.

And how many positive tests were there? It is hard to find, but here at Wiki, they show around 15 athletes were caught doping before or during London. And there were 8 caught in Sochi. Only one of those 23 were Russian, a discus thrower.

Russia led the medal count at their Olympics this past year. And not one of their athletes tested positive. And the documentary says that 99% of their athletes were doping.

He's wrong. Here's number 2:

http://sputniknews.com/voiceofrussia/voiceofrussia/2012_08_03/UCI-Branova-positive-for-doping/

She was never that good. Won nothing of note until she started doping
for the 2011 European Junior champs.
 
Apr 4, 2010
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I haven't read the article, only the OP, but his logic seems to be rather linear and I am not sure how well that kind of thought process fits when discussing a complex matter, such as the performance of a human being.
 
Jul 21, 2012
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Walkman said:
I haven't read the article, only the OP, but his logic seems to be rather linear and I am not sure how well that kind of thought process fits when discussing a complex matter, such as the performance of a human being.
So what is missing?

Seems like you are going with the old "working hard and more naturally talented"?
 
the sceptic said:
So what is missing?

Seems like you are going with the old "working hard and more naturally talented"?

Well you havent really read the article or comments section either which is no surprise at all.

As a few of the comments highlighted.

Tilford puts forward the suggestion based on the documentary that 99% of Russian athletes are doping so those beating them must also be doping.

Yet within his own piece, he mentions Lance saying Andy Hampsten doped but Tilford defends Hampsten as being clean because you know they rode on the same team for a few years.

What % of European pros were doping in the 80s/early 90s, I would guess close to that 99% figure yet Hampsten was better than 90% of them.

So within Tilford's article, he undermines his own thought process which is what a few people have called him on.

That is where the linear process falls down but Tilford doesn't seem to realise that. Before everyone says different eras/different drugs, where does it say the Russians are all on the most advanced drugs. That 800m runner talks about some steroid which of course were also around in the 80s.

The 99% figure seems to come from one athlete but has been shoe-horned as the headline becasue it will garner the most attention. It is a bit like DiLucas 90% figure, a completely random number. Maybe it is that high, who knows but as usual it is more about the headlines.
 
Jul 21, 2012
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talk about clutching at straws.

if anyone is undermining their own thought process it's you.

it doesn't surprise me that you don't believe something that doesn't fit your agenda. But it seems absurd that you claim this number is wrong while pulling another number out of thin air yourself.

Tilford seems to be of the opinion that doping was less severe in the 80s than it is now. Not sure how that undermines the rest of his argument.

I don’t doubt that most cyclists took drugs, historically, but the drugs only got out of control since he had been competing on a Professional level.
 
the sceptic said:
talk about clutching at straws.

if anyone is undermining their own thought process it's you.

it doesn't surprise me that you don't believe something that doesn't fit your agenda. But it seems absurd that you claim this number is wrong while pulling another number out of thin air yourself.

Tilford seems to be of the opinion that doping was less severe in the 80s than it is now. Not sure how that undermines the rest of his argument.


Does Tilford know what exact drugs the Russians are taking? No. He assumes that they are all on EPO/Blood bags as those are the big game changers but many of those athletes such as the field eventers are ulikely to use such substances.

Tilfords reasoning is based on a lot of assumptions about a lot of things. That is the problem with it.

His basic thought process is dopers cannot be beat which he then contradicts with the Hampsten example. Once you accepts dopers can be beat by clean athletes like he does, you are on very shaky grounds for make sweeping generalisations without having all the facts.
 
Mar 4, 2010
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the sceptic said:
talk about clutching at straws.

if anyone is undermining their own thought process it's you.

it doesn't surprise me that you don't believe something that doesn't fit your agenda. But it seems absurd that you claim this number is wrong while pulling another number out of thin air yourself.

Tilford seems to be of the opinion that doping was less severe in the 80s than it is now. Not sure how that undermines the rest of his argument.
What about the 1990's?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrew_Hampsten#Grand_Tours_overall_classification_results_timeline
 
Just for the record, the only men's ahtletic field event record that has been beaten in the last decade has been the pole vault. You have to go all the way back to 1996 for Jan Seleznys javelin WR. THe shot-putt is from 1990, the discus/hammer even further back.

On the womens side, many of the world records are still from the 80s, sprints/400/800/shot-putt.

But hey, the modern drugs are far superior to anything from 30 years ago, right?
 
Apr 4, 2010
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the sceptic said:
So what is missing?

Seems like you are going with the old "working hard and more naturally talented"?
Well, the interesting question here is not whether or not I believe in hard work and natural talent (which I do to some extent), but rather if you think that:

i) talent does not exist

ii) doping always beats talent

Because the idea that just because 99% of the russians are on the juice, together with the fact that they are not dominant, proves that all the top athletes dope is not what one would call "bulletproof".
 
May 19, 2010
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pmcg76 said:
Just for the record, the only men's ahtletic field event record that has been beaten in the last decade has been the pole vault. You have to go all the way back to 1996 for Jan Seleznys javelin WR. THe shot-putt is from 1990, the discus/hammer even further back.

On the womens side, many of the world records are still from the 80s, sprints/400/800/shot-putt.

But hey, the modern drugs are far superior to anything from 30 years ago, right?
Incresed and improved testing might have taken the steroid use down on the field. It doesn't mean most aren't doping now, it might mean some were doping a lot in the eigthies while "all" are doping to some extent now. You don't have to brake records to make a good living in athletics, but you have to be at a certain level, and not getting caught helps too.

And there is always some thrower getting caught. Tikhon for instance was only one cm short of the hammer throw record in 2005. He was eventually caught. Syedikh is safe from retesting.

http://www.alltime-athletics.com/men.htm
 
pmcg76 said:
Just for the record, the only men's ahtletic field event record that has been beaten in the last decade has been the pole vault. You have to go all the way back to 1996 for Jan Seleznys javelin WR. THe shot-putt is from 1990, the discus/hammer even further back.

On the womens side, many of the world records are still from the 80s, sprints/400/800/shot-putt.

But hey, the modern drugs are far superior to anything from 30 years ago, right?
Didn't the ladies tone down the steroids because it was turning them into men?
 
pmcg76 said:
Just for the record, the only men's ahtletic field event record that has been beaten in the last decade has been the pole vault. You have to go all the way back to 1996 for Jan Seleznys javelin WR. THe shot-putt is from 1990, the discus/hammer even further back.

On the womens side, many of the world records are still from the 80s, sprints/400/800/shot-putt.

But hey, the modern drugs are far superior to anything from 30 years ago, right?
That is a very good point which asks some good questions. I find these subjects interesting and always do wonder why Olympic events haven't shown a linear proggression in the world records department as one like myself who believes in the prevalence of drugs, might expect.

Personally I would speculate that one factor at work here may be decreasing interest in these "fringe sports". By which I mean there is very little interest these days in any field events, and even many track ones. In the celebrity obsessed 24 hour news age 100m, totally dominates. And Football totally dominates sport in general.

Those were the most popular sports before, but they didn't dominate the way they do now.

Its not just a doping explanation. One result of the above is that very few children are pulled towards field events in the first place. Most talent goes elsewhere.

But from a doping standpoint, it means there just isn't the cash available to go into doping programs. I think Im not wrong in guessing that most olympic field event gold medalists will make less money in the week they win the gold medal, than most world cup level footballers will in that same week, even though they are on holiday.

And in todays world, while doping products are better than they were 30 years ago, i think weve seen that in todays world to maximise the effect of drugs and to guarantee that the tests will be beaten, an athlete needs the money to pay specialists, doctors, for advice and for them to set up an all round program.

The equation was different during the cold war, as the Communist countries (and to some extent the US in its battle with these countries), did not care about the overall importance of one event or another. To them every gold medal was worth as much as the other, so they were willing to fund fringe events as much as the more popular ones.

These days, there's no point in doping the javelin or discus, or long jump guys if you only have like 2 people representing you there and they aren't the best to begin with.

So my theory is that the low interest and very low potential wealth gained in these sports, makes them less fertile ground for the top doping doctors and programs.

To back this up I would point to the fact that the biggest event in track and field, the one which probably atm generates more revenue than the other 20 combined, has during this period seen continued world record progression, quite clearly fueled by doping (since most wr holders of the last 30 years have either been caught or implicated). Precisely because there is the money there neccesary to attract major doping. Also tennis is obviously seeing an increase in doping atm for the same reason.

On the other hand, my theory doesn't explain why swimming has seen continued world record progression, since its also a minority sport. I would speculate here, since i see a select few countries tend to dominate swimming (US, France, Australia) that these countries have, due to tradition strong olympic swimming communities and organizations in this sport and are willing to fund the program in a way they wont for the 2 guys representing them pole vault.
 
Oct 9, 2014
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The Hitch said:
Personally I would speculate that one factor at work here may be decreasing interest in these "fringe sports"...

... Its not just a doping explanation. One result of the above is that very few children are pulled towards field events in the first place. Most talent goes elsewhere...

...But from a doping standpoint, it means there just isn't the cash available to go into doping programs. I think Im not wrong in guessing that most olympic field event gold medalists will make less money in the week they win the gold medal, than most world cup level footballers will in that same week, even though they are on holiday...
Could you not make this point about cycling? It's not exactly the most popular sport and it is most definitely not a sport that nations stake their national pride on?

N.B. I hope I haven't cut out any context that you find essential Hitch, I apologise if I have.
 

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