Okay, let's go a little further with this. Let's start with Cadel Evans, a rider most people would agree has exceptional talent, drive, and discipline. What's his palmares after more than a decade of pro cycling? Two wins: a world championship and a victory in one of the classics which isn't a monument. Let's take it, for the sake of this argument, that the difference between finishing second and 142 is a lot smaller than the difference between finishing first and second, because it is--and then let's compare Cadel's lifetime palmares to any single year of Valverde's since 2006. Given than no one with one tenth of a brain thinks there's the slightest possibility Valverde's clean, it's hard not to draw the conclusion that if Cadel doped, he'd have a longer list of victories.
I know there are other factors in this--AV has a team wholly united to support him, and Cadel, until this year, has never had that. But couldn't it be interpreted that his lack of team support is due to his cleanliness? That is, his management has been reluctant to give entire support to a rider who, however much he's talented, is unwilling to go the extra necessary distance to insure victories?
I also know that I'm constructing a losing argument here, essentially saying that a rider is clean--or, to be precise, might be clean--because he doesn't win races. But I do think that not to entirely give up on the sport, you have to at least entertain the idea that some riders might possibly not be doped up to the eyebrows. Maybe I'm naive. But I do think there's a possibility Cadel and Sastre might be clean. Vino, Valverde, Lance, Levi, Menchov, and on and on.... **** them all.