Gilbert warned for irregular blood values

Mar 18, 2009
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The eurosport commentators mentioned during the olympics road race that it's been made public that the UCI warned Gilbert late last year due to highly irregular blood value variations.

Three things come to mind:

1. Can anyone confirm this? Being morons they didn't mention a source. Did they make it up or is it actually the case?
2. If it is indeed the case, it surely must be linked to his massive drop in performance (well, no longer being on the same team as the miracle worker Dr. Ibarguren will of course be a cause as well)
3. If this is true why warn him instead of nailing him under the blood passport WTF?
 

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Jul 28, 2009
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issoisso said:
The eurosport commentators mentioned during the olympics road race that it's been made public that the UCI warned Gilbert late last year due to highly irregular blood value variations.

Three things come to mind:

1. Can anyone confirm this? Being morons they didn't mention a source. Did they make it up or is it actually the case?
2. If it is indeed the case, it surely must be linked to his massive drop in performance (well, no longer being on the same team as the miracle worker Dr. Ibarguren will of course be a cause as well)
3. If this is true why warn him instead of nailing him under the blood passport WTF?
And how annoyed would BMC feel having ponied up millions of euros for the rider sans "preparation" and subsequent results.
 
May 26, 2009
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I thought it was the official procedure to warn the teams before action?

I distinctly remember that Rabo had warnings about riders before. But I could be wrong.
 
Franklin said:
I thought it was the official procedure to warn the teams before action?

I distinctly remember that Rabo had warnings about riders before. But I could be wrong.
Leipheimer for one got a warning (back when he was in Gerolsteiner, I think).
Mayo and/or Euskaltel got one in 2004 too (courtesy of you know who - please let's not mention him).
 
Aug 18, 2009
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If we're honest it doesn't take a hematologist to tell he was juicing last year, just a pair of eyes and a look at the Ardennes' rolls of honour.
 
Dec 27, 2010
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Seems unlikely that the UCI would only make it public to Eurosport commentators and no actual media outlet?
 
So his new doc doesn't manage or dare to keep him at the blood levels of the past. Now he's got the warning.
What to do?
Keep values disappointing, or bring back as the passport analysts were expecteing, and blame it on too little Tenerife, family stress and illness?
 
It takes a strike/anomaly of '99.9% certainty' to begin a biopassport case.

Someone whose variations are extreme, but below that threshold (even say 99.5%) don't get cases opened, but get much greater scrutiny (in theory anyway).

Warnings or a 'chance to ex[plain such variations' are part of the scheme. Its the UCI saying we know what you are doing but cannot prove it -YET. Backoff on the manipulations.
 
issoisso said:
The eurosport commentators mentioned during the olympics road race that it's been made public that the UCI warned Gilbert late last year due to highly irregular blood value variations.

Three things come to mind:

1. Can anyone confirm this? Being morons they didn't mention a source. Did they make it up or is it actually the case?
2. If it is indeed the case, it surely must be linked to his massive drop in performance (well, no longer being on the same team as the miracle worker Dr. Ibarguren will of course be a cause as well)
3. If this is true why warn him instead of nailing him under the blood passport WTF?
1) Only thing on google is this thread and a PCM thread where a dutch program is mentioned as having revealed it. No link though.

3) Dunno. I think people are asked if they have any reason for the blood variations before a suspension is imposed. Maybe something along those lines? Other more cynical people might have other views.
 
Jul 18, 2010
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So you can have a stellar year and just get warned if you have the program right. By the time your performance tanks you have already signed a multi-million Euro deal based on the juiced performance before the warning.

I guess thats why the top classics riders take turns totally dominating the season followed by a steep drop the following year.
 
Apr 20, 2012
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classicomano said:
A Dutch journalist (if you can call him that) mentioned this story as well during the Tour.
You mean this one:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dIvhZrwt-T4

Lol.

Perhaps UCI told Gilbert to knock down the good blood or they will get medievall on his a$$

BMC bought a dead cat, that's for sure. Or is this the real Gilbert we are seeing this year.

Must be said, his real progress started in 2008 - 2009, till the absurd 2011. Those Lotto doctors must be the real deal.

Lotto replaced their doctor at the end of 2009 by Pharma Jose, must be a coincidence Phil really rocked the next two years.
 
Jul 16, 2010
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Fearless Greg Lemond said:
You mean this one:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dIvhZrwt-T4

Lol.

Perhaps UCI told Gilbert to knock down the good blood or they will get medievall on his a$$

BMC bought a dead cat, that's for sure. Or is this the real Gilbert we are seeing this year.

Must be said, his real progress started in 2008 - 2009, till the absurd 2011. Those Lotto doctors must be the real deal.

Lotto replaced their doctor at the end of 2009 by Pharma Jose, must be a coincidence Phil really rocked the next two years.
Lets not forget that Jurgen Van Den Brook had a rating of 9. Good Doctors alright
 
Mar 10, 2009
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Interesting, and non-surprising report really (if it's true, which I can't confirm for you). His drop in performance was a big tell. As to the violations part, i'll let Pat McQuaid explain ;):

PM: It's no use having a suspicious value - you can do nothing with that except target test. You cannot declare a positive on a suspicious value. With the traditional tests where a machine says negative or positive, if the machine says negative, we have to accept that. If the machine says positive, then we open a procedure. If you're looking at the passport, it's a different system, you're looking at experts, and experts have to agree whether we open up a procedure or not, and it's a long process before we get to that stage.


http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/mcquaid-disavows-uci-responsibility-in-armstrong-case
Suspicion is just not (always) enough to 'prosecute' someone. With tests for banned substances you are either positive, or not. With the bio passport, a number of experts have to analyze the case and make a determination, one that ultimately will have to be presented and defended before a 'jury.'

I think I read somewhere a while ago, I believe it was a quote from Michael Rasmussen, which I unfortunately can't find. He said that the bio passport gives the governing organizations more control over who they want to race and don't want to race. i.e. he hinted at "selective prosecution."

I can understand such a claim, but I don't know if it's possible that when a number of experts agree about irregularities, if someone else, i.e. non-experts, can halt bringing a case, with the argument that there isn't 'enough' or convincing enough evidence.

To take it to another, more "tin foil hat" level:

BMC is one of the bigger sponsors in cycling, and thus brings in a lot of money. Gilbert is a popular rider. :)
 
Like a good source.

But, is it any surprise this could be true?

Look at his "amazing" results last year. And now...terrible in every classic but one.

Same thing has happened with other riders. Hushovd come to mind...oh, and Cadel this year.

Now he has consulted with the "doctors" and he is "fatigued".

Yeah Cadel, you just can't recover as quickly once you are off the juice at 37yrs old.

Or maybe he has a "virus".

Gilbert was doping last year, no doubt.
 
henryg said:
I guess thats why the top classics riders take turns totally dominating the season followed by a steep drop the following year.
Pre-EPO the rider has graduated to a podium threat, so his moves will be covered closely thus decreasing the likelihood of another podium. He'd be at the sharp end of the race, but covered closely.

Post-EPO if the UCI warns, then the program has to be dialed back. You aren't near the sharp end of the race. That sounds exactly like Gilbert's 2012.
 
Bala Verde said:
I can understand such a claim, but I don't know if it's possible that when a number of experts agree about irregularities, if someone else, i.e. non-experts, can halt bringing a case, with the argument that there isn't 'enough' or convincing enough evidence.
The UCI can do that now. WADA may **recommend** opening a case, but it's up to the UCI to execute as they please. Circumstances suggest Contador's positive broke because the UCI wasn't opening WADA recommended cases.
 
Mar 19, 2009
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roundabout said:
It may have happened.
Yeah we don't know for sure but that's the big question about the biopassport era...there is less doping now but does that mean doping affects results any less? The impact of doping is always going to be relative.

The paradox about more testing is the testers become as important as the doping docs when determining results. And giving out unpublicized warnings undermines the idea of a somewhat level playing field, especially if the media finds out about the warnings later. If we find out that Gilbert, Cancellara, Boonen, Wiggins or Froome got warned and then showed a "mysterious" drop in ability then nothing has really changed.

I'm for the biopassport but I think if you look at it objectively an argument can be made that it's made the racing less exciting and actually increased the difference between the top guy(s) at any particular time and the rest. If the sport really wants try to get back to the pre-blood doping days of the 1980s and before, the passport will probably still have to be tightened up.
 

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