Omerta Beginnings in EPO Era

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Dr. Maserati said:
If you didn't want me to continue some 'spurious debate' then you would agree to disagree...... not ask questions.

So let me help you answer your question - "Now I ask you, and I ask myself: how is one to misread what you wrote?"

I wrote - "Firstly, until Festina no-one was aware of the scale of EPO doping."

You did misread it as these were your answers ( in 2 different posts)
1 - That's not true. Every amateur rider in Italy (though I must also presume Europe), knew about EPO at least as early as 95, when I began racing in the Boot.

And
2- However, the issue I was addressing was entirely something else: namely, that you said widespread knowledge of EPO was only revealed with the Festina Affair.

Now if I had wrote "Firstly, until Festina no-one was aware of EPO doping." - you would be correct.
but as I wrote - "Firstly, until Festina no-one was aware of the scale of EPO doping." -so, you are wrong.
Ipso facto.

At any rate "the scale" has nothing to do with our debate in regards to your interpretation, since "no-one" has taken on the primary force in what you were trying to claim. But let's not enter into a controversy over semantics now shall we?
 
Jun 19, 2009
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pmcg76 said:
I think all cyclists were aware of the scale of EPO by 94-95. I think the last team's regarded as changing over to EPO were the French teams Castorama and GAN and Motorola. I think maybe all in 94-95.

In terms of general public knowledge, most fans were aware of the usage of EPO from the early 90s and there were many articles on EPO in 95/96 but it was only the Festina affair that really confirmed how bad it was.

It definitely went from individuals riders who didnt know how to use it correctly(the early guys like Draaijer/Bar)to individuals who used doctors to figure it out(Italians) to full teams using it (93/94) to almost everyone using it(96).
Pmg - the reason I quote your post is not because I disagree with your overall point but because I can highlight the minor part I disagree with without you going all latin on me.

I have already stated my own knowledge of EPO - when I first heard its vague terms and when I heard it mentioned in name.
But not everyone knew its scale - I would include both cyclists and those within the teams in this.

From Emma O'Reillys affidavit:
46 - It was no secret that Festina had a doping program, but I do recall that everybody was surprised when we learned the amount of drugs that Voet was transporting for the Festina team.

Why that is pertinent is to go back to what the OP was wondering - why no-one spoke up.
Even within cycling itself it was not known how bad it had gotten - and anyone who may have suspected would have been dismissed.
To the general public it was mainly viewed as an Italian problem and a few big teams.

While I agree with your view on Gan, CA, Motorola being late (edit - indeed the last 2 paragraphs)- again, isn't this view from your knowledge after Festina?
 
Sep 29, 2012
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I remember being told of the strange fact that endurance athletes suffer heart attacks more or as often as normally active people.

I wonder if autopsies are carried out on fit, relatively young dead people like this guy...

http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/belgian-cyclist-cuylits-dies-after-tour-du-faso
Cardiac arrest reportedly cause of death

Former Landbouwkrediet-Colnago rider Gunther Cuylits has died after suffering what is believed to be a cardiac arrest hours after completing the 10-stage Tour du Faso on Sunday. The 37-year-old Cuylits had finished the famous African race in 8th-place overall when he reportedly collapsed at a restaurant shortly following the winners ceremony.
 
Dr. Maserati said:
Pmg - the reason I quote your post is not because I disagree with your overall point but because I can highlight the minor part I disagree with without you going all latin on me.

I have already stated my own knowledge of EPO - when I first heard its vague terms and when I heard it mentioned in name.
But not everyone knew its scale - I would include both cyclists and those within the teams in this.

From Emma O'Reillys affidavit:
46 - It was no secret that Festina had a doping program, but I do recall that everybody was surprised when we learned the amount of drugs that Voet was transporting for the Festina team.

Why that is pertinent is to go back to what the OP was wondering - why no-one spoke up.
Even within cycling itself it was not known how bad it had gotten - and anyone who may have suspected would have been dismissed.
To the general public it was mainly viewed as an Italian problem and a few big teams.

While I agree with your view on Gan, CA, Motorola being late (edit - indeed the last 2 paragraphs)- again, isn't this view from your knowledge after Festina?
FWIW, I interpreted O'Reilly's observation (as well as Tyler's in his book, for that matter) to be shock about the fact that Willy Voet was carrying so many drugs. I don't think riders were surprised at how prevalent EPO and doping were, and I don't think riders were surprised at the amount an individual was willing to take (Riis' levels were well known), but I think the amount of drugs Voet was caught with was just crazy. It kind of gave a collective perspective of 'holy crap, we're taking these dose by dose, but all in all that's still shocking'.

Anyway, you may disagree, which is fine. But to me that quote suggested surprise very specifically at Voet's car, not at the use of drugs in the peloton.
 
Sep 29, 2012
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skidmark said:
FWIW, I interpreted O'Reilly's observation (as well as Tyler's in his book, for that matter) to be shock about the fact that Willy Voet was carrying so many drugs. I don't think riders were surprised at how prevalent EPO and doping were, and I don't think riders were surprised at the amount an individual was willing to take (Riis' levels were well known), but I think the amount of drugs Voet was caught with was just crazy. It kind of gave a collective perspective of 'holy crap, we're taking these dose by dose, but all in all that's still shocking'.

Anyway, you may disagree, which is fine. But to me that quote suggested surprise very specifically at Voet's car, not at the use of drugs in the peloton.
The shock may also have been due to the fact that Willy had more drugs than his team alone would need - that he was in fact supplying to many others, not just his team.
 
pmcg76 said:
I think all cyclists were aware of the scale of EPO by 94-95. I think the last team's regarded as changing over to EPO were the French teams Castorama and GAN and Motorola. I think maybe all in 94-95.

In terms of general public knowledge, most fans were aware of the usage of EPO from the early 90s and there were many articles on EPO in 95/96 but it was only the Festina affair that really confirmed how bad it was.

It definitely went from individuals riders who didnt know how to use it correctly(the early guys like Draaijer/Bar)to individuals who used doctors to figure it out(Italians) to full teams using it (93/94) to almost everyone using it(96).
Just to be precise and this jostled my memory, in recalling that I do remember having heard of EPO in connection with some Dutch amateurs who died in their sleep of massive heart attacks due to over dense blood. When was it in 91-92? It was only in 95, however, in Italy that I learnt of how much it was used and discussed within the Italian, and presumably Continental, cycling community. Hence personally, and to those I knew then, Festina was hardly a revelation, but a confirmation of what people were already saying.
 
Sep 21, 2012
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CN article: Armstrong's fraud paralleled EPO-makers' feud talks about a soon-to-be released book titled "Blood Medicine: Blowing the Whistle on One of the Deadliest Prescription Drugs Ever"

... "In Europe, EPO's clinical trials began, and marathon runners, Nordic skiers and Dutch cyclists were getting a hold of the drug on the black market. From 1987 to 1990, about 18 young cyclists died under mysterious circumstances, including 27-year-old Johannes Draaijer."
 
Oct 16, 2010
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Bugno: towards a brighter future

In case anyone doubted, there's no omerta like Italian omerta.

"I think we should draw a line and close the past and go ahead with the future. We shouldn't concentrate on the past. I agree with truth and reconciliation as a concept but for me it's about the future."

Asked if he would be willing to come forward and cooperate with any information he had on his own career, or those he rode with during the 1990s when EPO use was arguably at its most rampant, Bugno said:

"When you talk about the past it's difficult to give an answer. Doping is a problem in all sports, not just cycling. I agree with the idea of talking about the truth but I don't see the point in looking into the past and going into that. I prefer to talk about the future even if I agree with the ideology of talking about the past."

"Talking about doping all the time isn't good. The anti-doping fight is really strong and we should concentrate on that. We can go into the past and look at what happened with Armstrong and everything that came out but this isn't good for cycling and that's what I've heard lately from talking to the riders.
http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/bugno-i-respect-armstrong-but-he-has-to-pay
 
Jul 19, 2009
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Riders don't want to confess that they were cheating. Their position is understandable, but does it make right?
 
Apr 20, 2012
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Dazed and Confused said:
so says the man representing the riders: Bugno.
If his kids will be affected by his abuse of HGH they will be coneheads by the time the come to puberty.

Nice representative, dear old Gianni; the lab experiment. Wonder why he proposed for the 50% rule back in the days.
 
poupou said:
Riders don't want to confess that they were cheating. Their position is understandable, but does it make right?
As Hamilton and Landis have shown, it's hard to call it cheating when the federation is directly involved in the cheating.
I don't know what you call it.

Elite cycling seems to reward people with indifference to right/wrong. Bugno being an example.
 

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