Teams & Riders Froome Talk Only

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thehog said:
bigcog said:
thehog said:
Saw that on Matt Slater’s Twitter / Facebook.

What WADA need to do is release the data because at the moment it’s still clear as mud how they came to bend their own rules in the manner in which they did along with not holding th PKG test.
We don't know that and the inference is they have a lot of such cases, so people are treating a sample of 1 (or 3 if you include Ulissi/Petacchi) as indicative and predictive of how they proceed with such cases.
Huh? WADA stated they didn’t hold the PKG test. We do not know that much but we are unsure why they decided not to conduct the test other than Froome wouldn’t be able to replicate his illness and exact conditions of the stage (??). Release the remaining data then we will know more. Nothing to do with Ulissi or Petacchi.
What I am saying, is that WADA are saying Froome was dealt with the same as any other rider, of whom there are more than Ulissi and Petacchi. Plus, why would they release more data when supposed to be confidential ??
 
Apr 16, 2017
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Bot. Sky_Bot said:
It should be repeated, Mr Rabin, WADA:
...
Asked why anyone else in Froome’s position will not use the same arguments, Dr Rabin said people were underestimating how many of these cases occur every year without anyone knowing about them, as was meant to happen in this case, too.
“It’s not a unique case but because it was Froome, a sporting celebrity, and it was put in the limelight, it appears to be unique,” he said.
“We deal with all cases on an individual basis and I have personally dealt with several in the past. Yes, there are elements of this case that are fairly unusual but I can assure you it is not unique.”
But this does not actually explain anything. It is him saying we do this often enough that we know what we are doing, but he does not provide any basis for why the decision was made.
 
Re: Re:

Summoned said:
Bot. Sky_Bot said:
It should be repeated, Mr Rabin, WADA:
...
Asked why anyone else in Froome’s position will not use the same arguments, Dr Rabin said people were underestimating how many of these cases occur every year without anyone knowing about them, as was meant to happen in this case, too.
“It’s not a unique case but because it was Froome, a sporting celebrity, and it was put in the limelight, it appears to be unique,” he said.
“We deal with all cases on an individual basis and I have personally dealt with several in the past. Yes, there are elements of this case that are fairly unusual but I can assure you it is not unique.”
But this does not actually explain anything. It is him saying we do this often enough that we know what we are doing, but he does not provide any basis for why the decision was made.
"Trust me, I'm a Doctor"...
 
bigcog said:
thehog said:
bigcog said:
thehog said:
Saw that on Matt Slater’s Twitter / Facebook.

What WADA need to do is release the data because at the moment it’s still clear as mud how they came to bend their own rules in the manner in which they did along with not holding th PKG test.
We don't know that and the inference is they have a lot of such cases, so people are treating a sample of 1 (or 3 if you include Ulissi/Petacchi) as indicative and predictive of how they proceed with such cases.
Huh? WADA stated they didn’t hold the PKG test. We do not know that much but we are unsure why they decided not to conduct the test other than Froome wouldn’t be able to replicate his illness and exact conditions of the stage (??). Release the remaining data then we will know more. Nothing to do with Ulissi or Petacchi.
What I am saying, is that WADA are saying Froome was dealt with the same as any other rider, of whom there are more than Ulissi and Petacchi.
And we will never know whether that is the thruth or attempt to get public criticism away from WADA in this particular case.

Somehow I would hope the proceedings of WADA would become more transparent in regards of AAFs.
 
Apr 16, 2017
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bigcog said:
thehog said:
bigcog said:
thehog said:
Saw that on Matt Slater’s Twitter / Facebook.

What WADA need to do is release the data because at the moment it’s still clear as mud how they came to bend their own rules in the manner in which they did along with not holding th PKG test.
We don't know that and the inference is they have a lot of such cases, so people are treating a sample of 1 (or 3 if you include Ulissi/Petacchi) as indicative and predictive of how they proceed with such cases.
Huh? WADA stated they didn’t hold the PKG test. We do not know that much but we are unsure why they decided not to conduct the test other than Froome wouldn’t be able to replicate his illness and exact conditions of the stage (??). Release the remaining data then we will know more. Nothing to do with Ulissi or Petacchi.
What I am saying, is that WADA are saying Froome was dealt with the same as any other rider, of whom there are more than Ulissi and Petacchi. Plus, why would they release more data when supposed to be confidential ??
Froome is definitely entitled to have some confidentiality in this process, so it seems quite likely to me that there will never be much information provided that will explain the decision that was made to consider the result on the control not to be such that is was an AAF. All that is left is to trust WADA, and that is the entire issue for those who have doubts. It is the effective equivalent of an appeal to authority, which means the questions are likely to continue, and WADA is not going to be able to provide a rigorous defense of its decision.
 
Apr 23, 2016
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I used to race but I don't even own a bike anymore. I'm afraid that if I have a bike, then I'll start riding it like crazy and eventually enter a few races against other old farts. I know there are few people who would put in the same kind of training as me. There are some who are better no matter what I do, and there are some who are not better and will pay the money to the anti-aging clinic to keep the wheels rolling. I realize that it's not worth the effort, so I don't. I have been slowly fading away from the sport over the years, ever since Simeoni. With Armstrong/Froome/Sky/Wiggins/Cookson/Reedie...and now Lappartient, the candle has finally lost it's flame.
 
Sep 11, 2016
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brownbobby said:
ahsoe said:
bambino said:
brownbobby said:
Pantani_lives said:
He had an inexplicable dose of salbutamol in his body. He failed to proof that his body can miraculously produce these levels by just taking a few puffs. The only acceptable decision would have been to ban and disqualify him. WADA and UCI aren't following their own rules. It's class justice.
An inexplicable dose that he managed to errr....explain :confused:
Well... actually you don't know whether he did or not.

The details are not there to be judged whether they managed to explain anything or did they just point out to measurement errors that will be dealt in court for the next 2-3 years. Or something else. Actually none of us knows jack **** about why exactly it was whitdrawn.
You beat me to it. Exactly my point :)
Oh i see, this thing only works one way...we can happily jump to conclusions about bribes, pay offs and cover ups...but we cant suggest that the reason the case was dropped was because he explained the readings to the satisfaction of the people that matter. Ive got it :cool:
No it works both ways. You can suggest that the case was dropped because he explained the test results in a satisfactory way. And it might true.

What I stated in my other post, and what Bambino is suggesting here (correct me if I am wrong) is that there are certainly very reasonable possibilities for this outcome other than a satisfactory explanation from Froome to the test results.
But we simply do not know, and we need more information.
Edit: Which it seems from the latest Sky statement, we will not be getting.
 
bambino said:
bigcog said:
thehog said:
bigcog said:
thehog said:
Saw that on Matt Slater’s Twitter / Facebook.

What WADA need to do is release the data because at the moment it’s still clear as mud how they came to bend their own rules in the manner in which they did along with not holding th PKG test.
We don't know that and the inference is they have a lot of such cases, so people are treating a sample of 1 (or 3 if you include Ulissi/Petacchi) as indicative and predictive of how they proceed with such cases.
Huh? WADA stated they didn’t hold the PKG test. We do not know that much but we are unsure why they decided not to conduct the test other than Froome wouldn’t be able to replicate his illness and exact conditions of the stage (??). Release the remaining data then we will know more. Nothing to do with Ulissi or Petacchi.
What I am saying, is that WADA are saying Froome was dealt with the same as any other rider, of whom there are more than Ulissi and Petacchi.
And we will never know whether that is the thruth or attempt to get public criticism away from WADA in this particular case.

Somehow I would hope the proceedings of WADA would become more transparent in regards of AAFs.
Point being what was WADA doing? It was for the CADF to handle using WADAs rules. It appears in this case WADA overruled and made an announcement when ASO made its move to bar Froome from the TDF. It really wasn’t for WADA to rule in this instance but they did insert themselves directly in the case.
 
bambino said:
King Boonen said:
thehog said:
Saw that on Matt Slater’s Twitter / Facebook.

What WADA need to do is release the data because at the moment it’s still clear as mud how they came to bend their own rules in the manner in which they did along with not holding th PKG test.
Yeah, and there still seems to be lots of assumptions/taking his word for it. Things like increasing the dose in the days before, how do they know how much he took. Surely they didn't ask a man who has had a team of lawyers and scientists determining his best defence how much medication he took and accepted his answer without verification? Which dietary supplements interfere with salbutamol metabolism and did they prove he was taking them?
And this is why I'm getting puzzled.

This decision suggest that in case you can "explain" spesific conditions, the liability of Athlete to proove he/she didn't use prohibited way to administrate or didn't take too much seems to be gone. The medication for infection can be prooved I guess, but supplements - fo they track the usage with documentation?
I guess we'll never know, but I would hope that there is something backing up any claims. Based on Sky's past medical record keeping I wouldn't even be confident that treatment for infection could be proved...
 
Apr 15, 2013
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“First, there was a very significant increase in dosage in the preceding days (Froome increased his normal low dosage to a higher but still legal number of puffs to combat worsening symptoms). Second, he was being treated for an infection.
“And then there was the physiological impact of the event and other factors, such as dietary supplements and so on.
“Given all of this, we decided an excretion study was impossible and the finding was not inconsistent with therapeutic dosages.”
This bit just makes me cry..

The whole point of antidoping is that unless you demonstrate that the finding is consistent with therapeutic dosage in your specific situation by recreating conditions for a test, you are banned.. This is how it works.... If from now on the onus of proof changes, antidoping is dead at least for all "therapeutic substances" that can be used under such and such threshold.

Any rider that wants to perform SHOULD go the full Sharapova route : make as good a cocktail as you can as long as the substances are not outright banned, and if there is a problem, just fight for it and your chances of emerging unscathed are massive.
 
“In this case, we had several specific elements,” said Dr Rabin.
“First, there was a very significant increase in dosage in the preceding days (Froome increased his normal low dosage to a higher but still legal number of puffs to combat worsening symptoms).
I really don’t see why this matters. There is no evidence whatsoever that increasing the dose results in a different metabolism for the higher dose than if that dose were used all the time. He may just mean that this accounts for a higher urinary level than on earlier stages—of course--but just because the urinary level is higher doesn’t mean it should exceed the limit.

Second, he was being treated for an infection.
So is the argument that an antibiotic he used interfered with excretion of salbutamol? I suggested this several months ago, actually thought it might be Froome’s best defense, but there was no mention of this in WADA’s statement yesterday.

“And then there was the physiological impact of the event and other factors, such as dietary supplements and so on.
With all due respect, come on. Diet has been appealed to be other riders, there’s no evidence that it can have this kind of effect on salbutamol metabolism/excretion. If it could, the word would have gotten around to use this ploy a long time ago.

Asked why anyone else in Froome’s position will not use the same arguments, Dr Rabin said people were underestimating how many of these cases occur every year without anyone knowing about them, as was meant to happen in this case, too.
WADA doesn’t tell us how many of these cases occur every year—a glaring lack of transparency—but the stats they do publish allow us to put a ceiling on such cases. It’s not very high. The least WADA could do is state how many such cases occur every year, even if they’re too chicken-*** to say anything any more about them.

“We deal with all cases on an individual basis and I have personally dealt with several in the past. Yes, there are elements of this case that are fairly unusual but I can assure you it is not unique.”
And you’re fine with not having these cases made public? There is very relevant information that the public is not allowed to have? We’re supposed to trust WADA, because we can’t independently check their arguments? Maybe you can’t identify the riders, but you could certainly publish all the relevant details without compromising any confidentiality. Come on.
 
veji11 said:
This bit just makes me cry..

The whole point of antidoping is that unless you demonstrate that the finding is consistent with therapeutic dosage in your specific situation by recreating conditions for a test, you are banned.. This is how it works.... If from now on the onus of proof changes, antidoping is dead at least for all "therapeutic substances" that can be used under such and such threshold..
I imagine Sky have shown amongst other things it's impossible to replicate race conditions for a test. That seems pretty obvious and it's weird no one has ever challenged that before.
 
Jul 11, 2013
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Merckx index said:
“In this case, we had several specific elements,” said Dr Rabin.
“First, there was a very significant increase in dosage in the preceding days (Froome increased his normal low dosage to a higher but still legal number of puffs to combat worsening symptoms).
I really don’t see why this matters. There is no evidence whatsoever that increasing the dose results in a different metabolism for the higher dose than if that dose were used all the time. He may just mean that this accounts for a higher urinary level than on earlier stages—of course--but just because the urinary level is higher doesn’t mean it should exceed the limit.

Second, he was being treated for an infection.
So is the argument that an antibiotic he used interfered with excretion of salbutamol? I suggested this several months ago, actually thought it might be Froome’s best defense, but there was no mention of this in WADA’s statement yesterday.

“And then there was the physiological impact of the event and other factors, such as dietary supplements and so on.
With all due respect, come on. Diet has been appealed to be other riders, there’s no evidence that it can have this kind of effect on salbutamol metabolism/excretion. If it could, the word would have gotten around to use this ploy a long time ago.

Asked why anyone else in Froome’s position will not use the same arguments, Dr Rabin said people were underestimating how many of these cases occur every year without anyone knowing about them, as was meant to happen in this case, too.
WADA doesn’t tell us how many of these cases occur every year—a glaring lack of transparency—but the stats they do publish allow us to put a ceiling on such cases. It’s not very high. The least WADA could do is state how many such cases occur every year, even if they’re too chicken-*** to say anything any more about them.

“We deal with all cases on an individual basis and I have personally dealt with several in the past. Yes, there are elements of this case that are fairly unusual but I can assure you it is not unique.”
And you’re fine with not having these cases made public? There is very relevant information that the public is not allowed to have? We’re supposed to trust WADA, because we can’t independently check their arguments? Maybe you can’t identify the riders, but you could certainly publish all the relevant details without compromising any confidentiality. Come on.
A danish lecturer involved in the case claims there are about 15 cases a year with over 1200 ng/ml.

I dont know how to link to the podcast from my phone and its in danish.
 
Re:

bigcog said:
From another forum:

From Matt Slater.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has strongly denied that the decision to clear Chris Froome of cheating has left its policy on the asthma drug salbutamol in shreds.
Speaking to Press Association Sport, WADA’s science director Dr Oliver Rabin said the case was “not unique” and he did not believe it would lead to a wave of appeals from athletes who have been banned in the past.
Earlier on Monday, cycling’s governing body the UCI announced it was not proceeding with an anti-doping case against Froome despite the Team Sky star returning a urine sample at last year’s Vuelta a Espana that contained double the permitted amount of salbutamol.
Having always maintained his innocence, the four-time Tour de France champion welcomed the news but many pundits have questioned how WADA’s rules on salbutamol, and other so-called “threshold drugs”, can survive.
Asked what impact he thought the case would have, Dr Rabin said: “I may be about to disappoint you, but I do not believe it will have much at all.”
Salbutamol is classed as a ‘specified’ drug by WADA, which means it is allowed for therapeutic reasons up to a certain dosage. This is because there is no performance-enhancing effect for asthmatics taking normal amounts of the drug via an inhaler.
For salbutamol, the limit is 1,000 nanograms per millilitre (ng/ml) and that has been set so the majority of people, taking no more than 1,600 micrograms a day, or 16 puffs on an adult inhaler, would not fail the test.
The word “majority” is crucial as Dr Rabin acknowledges WADA “is well aware of salbutamol’s variability” – in other words, not everyone processes it in the same way and some process it differently some of the time.
“That is why an adverse finding only opens the door to further study – it’s not an automatic sanction,” he said.
Froome’s sample contained 2,000 ng/ml of salbutamol, double the limit, although that was then corrected to 1,400 ng/ml when his dehydration was factored in. Having returned that finding, the onus was on him to explain how it happened without taking more than the permitted dose.
The British star, as we now know, has been able to satisfy the UCI and WADA that the one adverse sample he returned during that race, when he was tested almost every day, was an anomaly and not a result of taking too many puffs or taking the drug orally or intravenously.
This last point is significant as WADA does ban higher dosages of salbutamol taken via those methods, as there is evidence it acts as a stimulant and a muscle-building agent.
The problem for WADA, Dr Rabin explained, is that even when you inhale salbutamol 60-70 per cent of it goes into the gastrointestinal tract, as it would if you took it as a pill. This is why WADA’s advice is not to get too close to the dosage limit as doing so would suggest your asthma is out of control and you run the risk of an adverse finding.
“In this case, we had several specific elements,” said Dr Rabin.
“First, there was a very significant increase in dosage in the preceding days (Froome increased his normal low dosage to a higher but still legal number of puffs to combat worsening symptoms). Second, he was being treated for an infection.
“And then there was the physiological impact of the event and other factors, such as dietary supplements and so on.
“Given all of this, we decided an excretion study was impossible and the finding was not inconsistent with therapeutic dosages.”
The reference to excretion study relates to WADA’s usual requirement in these cases that the athlete replicates what happened in a laboratory.
Asked why anyone else in Froome’s position will not use the same arguments, Dr Rabin said people were underestimating how many of these cases occur every year without anyone knowing about them, as was meant to happen in this case, too.
“It’s not a unique case but because it was Froome, a sporting celebrity, and it was put in the limelight, it appears to be unique,” he said.
“We deal with all cases on an individual basis and I have personally dealt with several in the past. Yes, there are elements of this case that are fairly unusual but I can assure you it is not unique.”
Stressing that the rules are “for everyone”, Dr Rabin said that WADA would send the details of the case to its experts for review, as it does after every significant case.
“But for now, we have no reason to question the rules,” he said.
And on whether WADA should prepare itself for appeals, he said: “That is more of a legal issue than a science question but, again, each case is different and we can see no reason that previous cases have not been handled fairly.”
Nice information and explanation. But I don't care. He still failed that test whether it was an anomaly or not. He should have been punished regardless.
So with this in mind if a lesser rider fails the test under similar circumstances and don't have the money to pay the scientific defense to reach the same conclusion then he is doomed? why are the rules there for?
 
Aug 20, 2017
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Summoned said:
Bot. Sky_Bot said:
It should be repeated, Mr Rabin, WADA:
...
Asked why anyone else in Froome’s position will not use the same arguments, Dr Rabin said people were underestimating how many of these cases occur every year without anyone knowing about them, as was meant to happen in this case, too.
“It’s not a unique case but because it was Froome, a sporting celebrity, and it was put in the limelight, it appears to be unique,” he said.
“We deal with all cases on an individual basis and I have personally dealt with several in the past. Yes, there are elements of this case that are fairly unusual but I can assure you it is not unique.”
But this does not actually explain anything. It is him saying we do this often enough that we know what we are doing, but he does not provide any basis for why the decision was made.
Yes, you right, we have almost no basis to understand the decision. But:
- "WADA would send the details of the case to its experts for review, as it does after every significant case." - Did we know the details of other cases? I think, not;

- "..people were underestimating how many of these cases occur every year without anyone knowing about them.." - that's finally explain why we didn't have any idea till 13th od December about the case.
And that's not true we so far have had 3 cases of salbutamol cases in cycling, 2 of them have been finished with bans, and only in Froome's final verdict was different.
 
May 26, 2010
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bigcog said:
veji11 said:
This bit just makes me cry..

The whole point of antidoping is that unless you demonstrate that the finding is consistent with therapeutic dosage in your specific situation by recreating conditions for a test, you are banned.. This is how it works.... If from now on the onus of proof changes, antidoping is dead at least for all "therapeutic substances" that can be used under such and such threshold..
I imagine Sky have shown amongst other things it's impossible to replicate race conditions for a test. That seems pretty obvious and it's weird no one has ever challenged that before.
What a joke.

Sky show nothing. End of. Sky talk a lot about transparency but never demonstratae it. No doubt they will leave everyone in the dark over this.

If you were anti-doping this decision is a disaster.
 
Re: Re:

mrhender said:
A danish lecturer involved in the case claims there are about 15 cases a year with over 1200 ng/ml.

I dont know how to link to the podcast from my phone and its in danish.
Thanks. I assume this is all athletes, not just cyclists.

This is critical information! How many of those fifteen a year get off? If it's very many, then these cases need to get into the public scientific literature. Because again, the literature says that exceeding 1200 ng/ml almost never happens within the allowed amount of puffs.

Also, how far above 1200 ng/ml do they go? Because Froome's 2000 ng/ml is about as high as has been reported publicly, other than that Swiss runner. Are there cases that high or higher that we don't know about? How can WADA sit on this information, when it's perfectly possible to publish it without revealing the athletes's identities?

I really think Rabin needs to be grilled over this. He seems to be implying that exceeding 1200 ng/ml is no big deal, happens all the time. Most pharmacologists who have studied salbutamol would disagree. There are a few, like Ken Fitch, who have been arguing about the variability for years, but as evidence all they have are a handful of cases where it could not be proven the athletes didn't cheat, and a couple of studies that did not look at 800 ug. Rabin seems to be saying, throw out the literature, we have other sources. Jeezus.
 
Benotti69 said:
bigcog said:
veji11 said:
This bit just makes me cry..

The whole point of antidoping is that unless you demonstrate that the finding is consistent with therapeutic dosage in your specific situation by recreating conditions for a test, you are banned.. This is how it works.... If from now on the onus of proof changes, antidoping is dead at least for all "therapeutic substances" that can be used under such and such threshold..
I imagine Sky have shown amongst other things it's impossible to replicate race conditions for a test. That seems pretty obvious and it's weird no one has ever challenged that before.
What a joke.

Sky show nothing. End of. Sky talk a lot about transparency but never demonstratae it. No doubt they will leave everyone in the dark over this.

If you were anti-doping this decision is a disaster.
I don't think it's a joke at all. Froome's case, its leak and the confusion resulting from the AAF, the process and the final decision and now an explanation from WADA simply highlights why transparency doesn't equal clarity. Assuming there are 15 cases per year no different to Froome that were not leaked, if the Danish podcasts claim is correct, suggests perhaps it is what it is for Froome juts like 15 others that also didn't ADRV either from the AAF we correctly know nothing about.
 
Re: Re:

Merckx index said:
mrhender said:
A danish lecturer involved in the case claims there are about 15 cases a year with over 1200 ng/ml.

I dont know how to link to the podcast from my phone and its in danish.
Thanks. I assume this is all athletes, not just cyclists.

This is critical information! How many of those fifteen a year get off? If it's very many, then these cases need to get into the public scientific literature. Because again, the literature says that exceeding 1200 ng/ml almost never happens within the allowed amount of puffs.

Also, how far above 1200 ng/ml do they go? Because Froome's 2000 ng/ml is about as high as has been reported publicly, other than that Swiss runner. Are there cases that high or higher that we don't know about? How can WADA sit on this information, when it's perfectly possible to publish it with revealing the athletes's identities?
It's reliant on my sleep-deprived brain, but I'm struggling to come up with many salbutamol bans in any sport. So maybe a high percentage get off?
 
Jul 11, 2013
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Merckx index said:
mrhender said:
A danish lecturer involved in the case claims there are about 15 cases a year with over 1200 ng/ml.

I dont know how to link to the podcast from my phone and its in danish.
Thanks. I assume this is all athletes, not just cyclists.

This is critical information! How many of those fifteen a year get off? If it's very many, then these cases need to get into the public scientific literature. Because again, the literature says that exceeding 1200 ng/ml almost never happens within the allowed amount of puffs.

Also, how far above 1200 ng/ml do they go? Because Froome's 2000 ng/ml is about as high as has been reported publicly, other than that Swiss runner. Are there cases that high or higher that we don't know about? How can WADA sit on this information, when it's perfectly possible to publish it with revealing the athletes's identities?

http://sport.tv2.dk/cykling/2018-07-03-podcast-afgoerelsen-paa-froome-sagen
I found the link. Doubt you know danish though?

I might be able to translate some time later.
 
I don't think AAFs of athletes acquitted of an AAF would even make it into WADA's statistics would they? I notice Rabin also used the word 'presumed AAF' elsewhere today, suggesting the AAF can essentially be nulled perhaps before it is added as an official AAF. Presume, means they are not 100% sure it is an AAF to me.
 
Apr 15, 2013
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It all points to the fact that only outright prohibition of a substance can prevent circumvention of the rules. I have read in other forums from pro riders themselves that a very important part of the peloton, if not a majority, happily puffs away... Some might call me a nasty anti-poor asthmatics, but there are some substances that should just be banned from now on. Too bad an asthmatic can't be a competitive cyclist, isn't it crazy to think that super efficient lungs without faults are key to an endurance sport like cycling ?

Anyway...
 
Re: Re:

Escarabajo said:
bigcog said:
From another forum:

From Matt Slater.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has strongly denied that the decision to clear Chris Froome of cheating has left its policy on the asthma drug salbutamol in shreds.
Speaking to Press Association Sport, WADA’s science director Dr Oliver Rabin said the case was “not unique” and he did not believe it would lead to a wave of appeals from athletes who have been banned in the past.
Earlier on Monday, cycling’s governing body the UCI announced it was not proceeding with an anti-doping case against Froome despite the Team Sky star returning a urine sample at last year’s Vuelta a Espana that contained double the permitted amount of salbutamol.
Having always maintained his innocence, the four-time Tour de France champion welcomed the news but many pundits have questioned how WADA’s rules on salbutamol, and other so-called “threshold drugs”, can survive.
Asked what impact he thought the case would have, Dr Rabin said: “I may be about to disappoint you, but I do not believe it will have much at all.”
Salbutamol is classed as a ‘specified’ drug by WADA, which means it is allowed for therapeutic reasons up to a certain dosage. This is because there is no performance-enhancing effect for asthmatics taking normal amounts of the drug via an inhaler.
For salbutamol, the limit is 1,000 nanograms per millilitre (ng/ml) and that has been set so the majority of people, taking no more than 1,600 micrograms a day, or 16 puffs on an adult inhaler, would not fail the test.
The word “majority” is crucial as Dr Rabin acknowledges WADA “is well aware of salbutamol’s variability” – in other words, not everyone processes it in the same way and some process it differently some of the time.
“That is why an adverse finding only opens the door to further study – it’s not an automatic sanction,” he said.
Froome’s sample contained 2,000 ng/ml of salbutamol, double the limit, although that was then corrected to 1,400 ng/ml when his dehydration was factored in. Having returned that finding, the onus was on him to explain how it happened without taking more than the permitted dose.
The British star, as we now know, has been able to satisfy the UCI and WADA that the one adverse sample he returned during that race, when he was tested almost every day, was an anomaly and not a result of taking too many puffs or taking the drug orally or intravenously.
This last point is significant as WADA does ban higher dosages of salbutamol taken via those methods, as there is evidence it acts as a stimulant and a muscle-building agent.
The problem for WADA, Dr Rabin explained, is that even when you inhale salbutamol 60-70 per cent of it goes into the gastrointestinal tract, as it would if you took it as a pill. This is why WADA’s advice is not to get too close to the dosage limit as doing so would suggest your asthma is out of control and you run the risk of an adverse finding.
“In this case, we had several specific elements,” said Dr Rabin.
“First, there was a very significant increase in dosage in the preceding days (Froome increased his normal low dosage to a higher but still legal number of puffs to combat worsening symptoms). Second, he was being treated for an infection.
“And then there was the physiological impact of the event and other factors, such as dietary supplements and so on.
“Given all of this, we decided an excretion study was impossible and the finding was not inconsistent with therapeutic dosages.”
The reference to excretion study relates to WADA’s usual requirement in these cases that the athlete replicates what happened in a laboratory.
Asked why anyone else in Froome’s position will not use the same arguments, Dr Rabin said people were underestimating how many of these cases occur every year without anyone knowing about them, as was meant to happen in this case, too.
“It’s not a unique case but because it was Froome, a sporting celebrity, and it was put in the limelight, it appears to be unique,” he said.
“We deal with all cases on an individual basis and I have personally dealt with several in the past. Yes, there are elements of this case that are fairly unusual but I can assure you it is not unique.”
Stressing that the rules are “for everyone”, Dr Rabin said that WADA would send the details of the case to its experts for review, as it does after every significant case.
“But for now, we have no reason to question the rules,” he said.
And on whether WADA should prepare itself for appeals, he said: “That is more of a legal issue than a science question but, again, each case is different and we can see no reason that previous cases have not been handled fairly.”
Nice information and explanation. But I don't care. He still failed that test whether it was an anomaly or not. He should have been punished regardless.
So with this in mind if a lesser rider fails the test under similar circumstances and don't have the money to pay the scientific defense to reach the same conclusion then he is doomed? why are the rules there for?
whats the f*cking point!!!


he never failed because he took too many puffs....
 

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