Is it good or bad for professional cycling to expose doping?

Oct 29, 2009
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This came up in the Radio Shack thread. I thought it would make for an interesting discussion but didn't want the Radio Shack thred to digress further.

With Kimmage's Rough Ride exposing widespread PED use in the peloton and more recently with Bernhard Kohl's BS claim that it's impossible to win without doping, or even Greg Lemond's seemingly constant accusations, what are your thoughts on exposing the use of PEDs? Is it good for the sport?
 
May 26, 2009
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Yes it would be great if cycling became clean, but I don't see it happening because too many people(not just riders/DS's etc possibly people at the U*I) would be caught with their hand in the pot.
 
Oct 29, 2009
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I look to baseball as an example. Jose Canseco all but destroyed the sport's credibility with his book; he basically called into question every achievement and record for basically an entire generation. Now we have guys like Bernhard Kohl saying you can't win in professional cycling and Greg Lemond asserting that TdF champion could not have climbed Verbier without PEDs. Before that it was Paul Kimmage's Rough Ride, a tragic tale of a failed and bitter domestique.

If a rider tests positive, I want to know, but at what point does it destroy the sport and the interest in the sport? Or does it even matter? It's there, so expose it. That's basically what I'm asking.
 
Jul 23, 2009
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Honesty always wins the day. Exposing the sport's flaws may cause cycling to take a brief hit in the court of public opinion, but I think more people and sponsors would be attracted to the sport if they believed they could trust in it.
 
Mar 18, 2009
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Sorry, what's BS about Kohl's claims? Or those of Manzano? Strange how they've been proved true time after time.

Omerta protects the cheaters and leads to a sport where parents are willing to dope their teenage kids in order for them to succeed. If you think that's healthy IK, then so be it. As the mother of a bike mad 3 year old it gives me huge cause for concern.
 
Oct 29, 2009
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bianchigirl said:
Sorry, what's BS about Kohl's claims? Or those of Manzano? Strange how they've been proved true time after time.

They're too absolute, and have been proved wrong time and time again.

I want to add, that I'm not advocating tossing a blanket over all doping cases. I just think the dope heavy focus may be bad for the sport. Just the other day, I was speaking to somebody about the TdF, he repeatedly referred to it as the Tour de Farce. He couldn't tell me any winner in the past 3 years (except Floyd), but was absolutely sure of the fact that every rider in the race was "doped up to their eyeballs." That's the current perception of cycling....not a good thing.
 
Aug 13, 2009
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While it it is easy to blame Paul and Greg for the sports problems but I think this is misguided. Doping has moved far beyond the competitive area and is now a legal issue. It has been criminalized by most governments.

As much as riders like Armstrong may try to silence Paul and Greg this does little but reinforce the fact that he is a bully and does nothing to address the issue....their voices are the tip of the iceburg.

We could ask for those in the sport to sit quietly an enforce the omerta but then sport will look even more foolish as the bust's roll in. Think about how foolish the UCI looks when they said the sport was clean in 2005, only to have Puerto, the Vienna Blood bank, The Portuguese doctor, Oil for drugs, and the recent arrest of Walter Virú, and many other positives. The sport tried to ignore the issue, an it blew up in their face.

BTW, you should read Paul's book sometime. Very little about doping in there.
 
Aug 13, 2009
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ImmaculateKadence said:
They're too absolute, and have been proved wrong time and time again.

I want to add, that I'm not advocating tossing a blanket over all doping cases. I just think the dope heavy focus may be bad for the sport. Just the other day, I was speaking to somebody about the TdF, he repeatedly referred to it as the Tour de Farce. He couldn't tell me any winner in the past 3 years (except Floyd), but was absolutely sure of the fact that every rider in the race was "doped up to their eyeballs." That's the current perception of cycling....not a good thing.

When has Manzano been proven wrong?
 
ImmaculateKadence said:
This came up in the Radio Shack thread. I thought it would make for an interesting discussion but didn't want the Radio Shack thred to digress further.

With Kimmage's Rough Ride exposing widespread PED use in the peloton and more recently with Bernhard Kohl's BS claim that it's impossible to win without doping, or even Greg Lemond's seemingly constant accusations, what are your thoughts on exposing the use of PEDs? Is it good for the sport?


This is always a good question? Would we rather watch a sport enjoying it oblivious to what is happening behind the scenes or have a sport exposed for what it is.

Personally I would like to watch a clean sport but then I watch other sports in which there is a good chance cheating is also widespread and just enjoy them for what they are without really questioning.

I guess the point is that people should be able to reach the top level of their sport without cheating. It was Kimmage who said he would never encourage his children to aspire to be cyclists because of the choices they would face.

People are very angry towards Kimmage but if anybody had bothered to give his story any time instead of dismissing him, then maybe this mess we are in might have been solved by now, then again it might never be solved.
 
Oct 29, 2009
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Race Radio said:
When has Manzano been proven wrong?

Sorry, I completely overlooked Manzano and responded that Kohl's claim is too absolute.

As for Manzano, many of those linked to Operación Puerto were eventually cleared (Contador was one), so he wasn't entirely correct.
 
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Anonymous

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I say expose them, and keep trying to clean up the sport. In sports like baseball, a guy like Mark McGwire can be famous and (by my siblings) loved for being able to consistently hit the ball over the outfield fence. If the ball doesn't travel as far, it might be a pop out instead, and they're less entertained. (I'm totally not condoning PED's in any sport).
In cycling, the guys aren't doing it to impress the fans overall - I'd enjoy watching guys climb Alpe d'Huez just as much if they were a mile or two an hour slower. They do it to cheat their competitors, or even their own teammates, and get more fame and money.
Besides, if they aren't exposed, stuff like this might be even more common. A seventeen year old Italian rider who got busted talks about the systematic program his junior team is on.
http://www.cyclismag.com/article.php?sid=5510#ancre2
 
ImmaculateKadence said:
Sorry, I completely overlooked Manzano and responded that Kohl's claim is too absolute.

As for Manzano, many of those linked to Operación Puerto were eventually cleared (Contador was one), so he wasn't entirely correct.

Manzano wasnt incorrect, he never accused any of the cyclists involved in Puerto. The police just used his statememts to lauch the investigation. A big part of the problem with Puerto was the Spanish officials failed to act on the info and shelved the cases.

If the case had been really conducted properly, the crap would really have hit the fan.
 
Aug 13, 2009
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ImmaculateKadence said:
Sorry, I completely overlooked Manzano and responded that Kohl's claim is too absolute.

As for Manzano, many of those linked to Operación Puerto were eventually cleared (Contador was one), so he wasn't entirely correct.

Manzano never fingered Contador.

The GC found Contadors name and phone number in Fuente's wallet. They also found a note in Fuentes files that Contador program should be "Nothing or like J.J."
 
Apr 17, 2009
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ImmaculateKadence said:
many of those linked to Operación Puerto were eventually cleared (Contador was one), so he wasn't entirely correct.

'Cleared by Puerto' is best interpreted as 'not investigated by Puerto'...
 
Mar 18, 2009
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ImmaculateKadence said:
They're too absolute, and have been proved wrong time and time again.

I want to add, that I'm not advocating tossing a blanket over all doping cases. I just think the dope heavy focus may be bad for the sport. Just the other day, I was speaking to somebody about the TdF, he repeatedly referred to it as the Tour de Farce. He couldn't tell me any winner in the past 3 years (except Floyd), but was absolutely sure of the fact that every rider in the race was "doped up to their eyeballs." That's the current perception of cycling....not a good thing.

Bassons was called a liar. Then Manzano was called a liar. Then Jaksche was called a liar. Then Sinkewitz was called a liar. Then Kohl was called a liar.

Simply because the average fan loves to keep his/her blinders on and pretend it can't possibly be as bad as everyone who speaks out shows it to be.

Name one thing any of those five people said that's been proven false.
 
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Anonymous

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Hmmm... I think people's perception is shaped by how they view cycling. If cycling is viewed with a heavy emphasis on the entertainment value then exposing doping might/should be construed as 'bad'.

I look at cycling in a more 'olympic spirit' way. Fair competition, guts, strength, endurance, intelligence... While good racing is very entertaining, to me it is so much more than just that. So, in this vein, I believe exposing the drug cheats to be a good and necessary thing.
 
Mar 18, 2009
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Scott SoCal said:
I look at cycling in a more 'olympic spirit' way. Fair competition, guts, strength, endurance, intelligence... While good racing is very entertaining, to me it is so much more than just that. So, in this vein, I believe exposing the drug cheats to be a good and necessary thing.

I think you'll find most people weigh that too, they just don't realize it.

I'll give you an example: Notice how many fans will hold up guys like Voigt as shining beacons of cleanliness.........yet he's been implied by Kohl to be on PFCs, Jaksche named a conversation with him about hiding drugs from police raids and (more damningly) Kirsipuu indirectly named Voigt as being on drugs.

But people like his personality, so nobody ever mentions any of it. It's tabu. Because "he's a nice guy and he tries hard", so he can't be on drugs....that's stuff's just for lazy guys who can't be bothered to train hard, right?

The fallacy is obvious, but for some reason people never seem to make the obvious mental association: the guys who try the hardest on the road and in training, who will give their all to win whatever the physical cost to their body..........are exactly how they're pictured, in that sense. They'll do anything to win. They will do ANYTHING to win. For a guy who gives it 110% in training and in races all the time because he feels that strongly about being the best and winning.....drugs carry no ethical burden.
 
Mar 18, 2009
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Scott SoCal said:
I look at cycling in a more 'olympic spirit' way. Fair competition, guts, strength, endurance, intelligence... While good racing is very entertaining, to me it is so much more than just that. So, in this vein, I believe exposing the drug cheats to be a good and necessary thing.

I think you'll find most people weigh that too, they just don't realize it.

I'll give you an example: Notice how many fans will hold up guys like Voigt as shining beacons of cleanliness.........yet he's been implied by Kohl to be on PFCs, Jaksche named a conversation with him about hiding drugs from police raids and (more damningly) Kirsipuu indirectly named Voigt as being on drugs.

But people like his personality, so nobody ever mentions any of it. It's tabu. Because "he's a nice guy and he tries hard", so he can't be on drugs....that's stuff's just for lazy guys who can't be bothered to train hard, right?

The fallacy is obvious, but for some reason people never seem to make the obvious mental association: the guys who try the hardest on the road and in training, who will give their all to win whatever the physical cost to their body..........are exactly how they're pictured, in that sense. They'll do anything to win. They will do ANYTHING to win. For a guy who gives it 110% in training and in races all the time because he feels that strongly about being the best and winning.....drugs carry no ethical burden. They won't think twice about taking them, after the doping culture is all around them.

How many of us pirate software and think it's nothing? That's exactly how most riders see it: "It's nothing....everyone does it and nobody gets hurt"
 
A

Anonymous

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My feeling is dopers need to be tossed from the sport no matter what their name is.

Having said that, I too look at Voight and appreciate how hard he works and how strong he is and would be very disappointed to learn that he's just another cheater.
 
ImmaculateKadence said:
Sorry, I completely overlooked Manzano and responded that Kohl's claim is too absolute.

As for Manzano, many of those linked to Operación Puerto were eventually cleared (Contador was one), so he wasn't entirely correct.
Here is the confusion: First we need to discuss why you believe that all these guys (Manzano, Kohl, and Jacksche) are lying and then address you initial question.

Why do you believe they are lying? Tell us which sections of their confessions are not true? Let’s discuss this first please.

Thanks.
 
Scott SoCal said:
My feeling is dopers need to be tossed from the sport no matter what their name is.

Having said that, I too look at Voight and appreciate how hard he works and how strong he is and would be very disappointed to learn that he's just another cheater.
In one of Jacksche confessions He threw him to the lions, remember. He said while riding the Tour the France something like they were running out of places to hide the dope. Maybe somebody can find the link.
 
Mar 18, 2009
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Escarabajo said:
In one of Jacksche confessions He threw him to the lions, remember. He said while riding the Tour the France something like they were running out of places to hide the dope. Maybe somebody can find the link.

I'll raise you a Kirsipuu quote, back when he first retired in 2007: "I rode with many very good riders. But only one is clean. Hushovd. People have no idea how good he really is"

Go back and look at the list of stars Kirsipuu rode with. Besides the obvious (Voigt, Moreau), I can think of another guy with basically the same reputation. Rides for the same team too. And if an australian reads this post, I'll be flamed in half a second :p
 
ImmaculateKadence said:
Before that it was Paul Kimmage's Rough Ride, a tragic tale of a failed and bitter domestique.
.

Have you read the book? It's been a while since I read it, but as i remember it, it didn't come across like that at all. and I remember being surprised, considering what i'd heard of it, that doping wasn't really a major point of it. I found it a fascinating story about the life of a professional domestique, with it's ups and downs, positives and negatives. no bitterness came across to me.
 
zapata said:
Have you read the book? It's been a while since I read it, but as i remember it, it didn't come across like that at all. and I remember being surprised, considering what i'd heard of it, that doping wasn't really a major point of it. I found it a fascinating story about the life of a professional domestique, with it's ups and downs, positives and negatives. no bitterness came across to me.

I agree, and as a side note, Joe Perkins said in his book that he felt from reading Kimmage's book that Kimmage thought he would win the Tour if everyone was clean. However, Paul explicitly says that even if it was a level playing field, he would never ever win a Grand Tour. Paul, if anything is grateful, because he considers himself lucky. One of his friends committed suicide for example, and ultimately cycling afforded him the opportunity to get into journalism. David Walsh said to Paul when starting out, to never run from the truth. Maybe the OP should keep that line in their thoughts.