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So Suddenly the Tour is clean. Where did this idea come from

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Dr. Maserati

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Logic-is-your-friend said:
Yet they are managers, not drug addicts. They won't try to dope at any cost. They have a team to run. They will make decisions based on what (they believe) is best for their team. If the risk is too big, or the reward is too small, these guys will rethink their strategy and try to be successful an other way.

I'm not saying they changed, but for them, doping or not is more of a businesslike decision.

And this is the point about how the sport operates- if these guys look at doping as a business decision what has changed in overall terms to dissuade them from taking that option?
 
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Dr. Maserati said:
And this is the point about how the sport operates- if these guys look at doping as a business decision what has changed in overall terms to dissuade them from taking that option?

Cost and benefit. I'd wager an undetectable program costs more now and gains less.
 

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karlboss said:
Cost and benefit. I'd wager an undetectable program costs more now and gains less.

Firstly, my point was directed at the management or top level staff on teams.
There has been no penalty on any of them whatsoever - sa me guys are running the show that were there previously.

As to cost and benefit for riders?
Well, PEDs or blood extraction are hardly that expensive - the main cost is logistics, getting the products in to a race like the Tour and avoiding Police scrutiny. Landis says he paid 10,000 for that.

Obviously not everyone can afford that but for a well paid athlete or GC/stage contender on a good contract I think the ROI from an undetectable product is quite good.

Further to that - previously getting caught meant a 2 year ban and a further 2 years out of the top ProTour, that no longer applies.
In many ways there are less harsher penalties than previously.
 
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Dr. Maserati said:
Firstly, my point was directed at the management or top level staff on teams.
There has been no penalty on any of them whatsoever - sa me guys are running the show that were there previously.

As to cost and benefit for riders?
Well, PEDs or blood extraction are hardly that expensive - the main cost is logistics, getting the products in to a race like the Tour and avoiding Police scrutiny. Landis says he paid 10,000 for that.

Obviously not everyone can afford that but for a well paid athlete or GC/stage contender on a good contract I think the ROI from an undetectable product is quite good.

Further to that - previously getting caught meant a 2 year ban and a further 2 years out of the top ProTour, that no longer applies.
In many ways there are less harsher penalties than previously.

Compared to EPO in years gone by? Undetectable, completely undetectable with sporting boosts in the region of 15%. Compared to what boost now?
 

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karlboss said:
Compared to EPO in years gone by? Undetectable, completely undetectable with sporting boosts in the region of 15%. Compared to what boost now?

Autologous blood doping is still undetectable, completely undetectable.

I never bought the 15% gain for Pros - (that study was on amateurs and had no limits), my own opinion was a gain of >5% - but even a gain of 1% to an elite athlete is huge.

The cost to benefits ratio has shrunk, but as long as there is a benefit, than little has changed.
 
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Dr. Maserati said:
The cost to benefits ratio has shrunk, but as long as there is a benefit, than little has changed.
I think you underestimate the practical difficulties of blood doping in the current era and also in the context of monitoring. It's not just the doping but also the need to ensure various parameters are not fluctuating to much. This needs a bit more expertise and equipment and also the effect is reduced because you are restricted to the extent of doping. As the incremental benefits come down so the cost/benefit ratio becomes less attractive.

I don't agree with your point that only the riders will be sanctioned. Effectively any team where blood doping is identified is going to be finished. The involvement of law enforcement in sporting fraud will go a long way to rectify the imbalance although I agree that the facilitators need to be targeted much much more effectively.
 

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rata de sentina said:
I think you underestimate the practical difficulties of blood doping in the current era and also in the context of monitoring. It's not just the doping but also the need to ensure various parameters are not fluctuating to much. This needs a bit more expertise and equipment and also the effect is reduced because you are restricted to the extent of doping. As the incremental benefits come down so the cost/benefit ratio becomes less attractive.
Yes & no.
I think you over estimate the effectiveness of the Bio Passport. More over, there have been no sanctions of late and in particular we know that after the last meeting of the committee (at least) 2 riders faced no sanction even though their profiles had been flagged.
Why? Probably because the UCI knew that these riders could outspend them.

That is where the loophole is.

rata de sentina said:
I don't agree with your point that only the riders will be sanctioned. Effectively any team where blood doping is identified is going to be finished. The involvement of law enforcement in sporting fraud will go a long way to rectify the imbalance although I agree that the facilitators need to be targeted much much more effectively.
Again, not really.

What happened at the Tour when Kolobnev was found positive? Nothing, the team carried on, they didn't even get kicked off the Tour.
Same as BMC - management wise it is Phonak 2.0 - and within their 1st year have Frei go positive and they are currently playing the hookey kookey with CONI on whether they have enough to get Ballan & Santambrogio, not too mention their 'part-time' "never really heard of him", "who?" soigneur caught with EPO - yet the team and the same management carry on.

In short, for the individual riders the cost/benefit has shrunk (but is still in favour of a well off athlete) while there has been no difference for a team ie owners or management.
 
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Dr. Maserati said:
Autologous blood doping is still undetectable, completely undetectable.

I never bought the 15% gain for Pros - (that study was on amateurs and had no limits), my own opinion was a gain of >5% - but even a gain of 1% to an elite athlete is huge.

The cost to benefits ratio has shrunk, but as long as there is a benefit, than little has changed.

That's all I was saying.
 
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Dr. Maserati said:
Autologous blood doping is still undetectable, completely undetectable.

I never bought the 15% gain for Pros - (that study was on amateurs and had no limits), my own opinion was a gain of >5% - but even a gain of 1% to an elite athlete is huge.

The cost to benefits ratio has shrunk, but as long as there is a benefit, than little has changed.

Uh, no. That would be an exaggeration. 4W is definitely not "huge" to someone pushing 400W. 10% is huge, but I can see someone wanting to dope for 5% gain.
 

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karlboss said:
That's all I was saying.
And my comments were directed at the management, not the riders - for the management the cost/benefit has not changed.

For the riders the cost benefit has shrunk (compared to the allyoucandope 90's) but there still remains a worthwhile benefit and that won't change as long as the UCI has a hand in anti-doping.

kielbasa said:
Uh, no. That would be an exaggeration. 4W is definitely not "huge" to someone pushing 400W. 10% is huge, but I can see someone wanting to dope for 5% gain.
Where did you get the 400w figure?!

You missed a key component in that estimate -400w X time. Even just 4w over a long period of time is a significant advantage.
 
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Dr. Maserati said:
Where did you get the 400w figure?!

You missed a key component in that estimate -400w X time. Even just 4w over a long period of time is a significant advantage.

101W over 100W is not huge.
404W over 400W is not huge.
1010W over 1000W is not huge.

I wasn't saying that it isn't an advantage, just that it isn't huge. A good night's sleep can make a bigger difference. Of course "significant" is more subjective than "huge", so I won't argue with your revised point.
 

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kielbasa said:
101W over 100W is not huge.
404W over 400W is not huge.
1010W over 1000W is not huge.

I wasn't saying that it isn't an advantage, just that it isn't huge. A good night's sleep can make a bigger difference. Of course "significant" is more subjective than "huge", so I won't argue with your revised point.

I haven't revised my point, it remains the same - "even a gain of 1% to an elite athlete is huge".

You are perfectly entitled to not share that view but making up numbers with no relation to anything proves nothing.
 
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Dr. Maserati said:
You are perfectly entitled to not share that view but making up numbers with no relation to anything proves nothing.
you are perfectly entitled to your opinion (about the 1%) not coinciding with kielbasa's but making up definitions of what constitutes 'huge' in professional cycling where a well oiled bike chain friction takes up at least 2.5% of power generated 'proves nothing' (to use your own words).
 

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python said:
you are perfectly entitled to your opinion (about the 1%) not coinciding with kielbasa's but making up definitions of what constitutes 'huge' in professional cycling where a well oiled bike chain friction takes up at least 2.5% of power generated 'proves nothing' (to use your own words).
1% to an elite athlete.
What part of that is difficult to understand?
 
Dr. Maserati said:
1% to an elite athlete.
What part of that is difficult to understand?

On steep climbs, power is (inversely) proportional to time (hence the relationship of VAM to watts/g). A 1% increase in power translates closely to a 1% decrease in time. A typical mt top finish might take about 40 minutes, so a 1% increase would be 24". Three-four of these in a GT, and you gain about 1-1.5 mins. This is a significant advantage, it might be the difference between winning or podiuming or not, but I tend to agree it is not a huge advantage, by a usual understanding of "huge". On any given climb, other factors somewhat out of the rider's control might make up some or all of that 24" (including Python's well-oiled chain). If doping carries a certain risk, a rider might well believe this kind of advantage would not be worth that risk.

P.S. - In ITTs, a 1% power increase translates to much less than a 1% benefit in time. There might also be some benefit in a 1% power increase in allowing a rider to stay with the elite group up to the final climb by conserving a little more energy, but the difference could be made up with better tactics or just chance factors.
 

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Merckx index said:
On steep climbs, power is (inversely) proportional to time (hence the relationship of VAM to watts/g). A 1% increase in power translates closely to a 1% decrease in time. A typical mt top finish might take about 40 minutes, so a 1% increase would be 24". Three-four of these in a GT, and you gain about 1-1.5 mins. This is a significant advantage, it might be the difference between winning or podiuming or not, but I tend to agree it is not a huge advantage, by a usual understanding of "huge". On any given climb, other factors somewhat out of the rider's control might make up some or all of that 24" (including Python's well-oiled chain). If doping carries a certain risk, a rider might well believe this kind of advantage would not be worth that risk.

P.S. - In ITTs, a 1% power increase translates to much less than a 1% benefit in time. There might also be some benefit in a 1% power increase in allowing a rider to stay with the elite group up to the final climb by conserving a little more energy, but the difference could be made up with better tactics or just chance factors.

Appreciate that you at least posted some discernible numbers - but even still the times you give of 1 - 1.5 mins are for "3 or 4" MTF's.
I said a 1% increase - (which I just used as a simplistic value) so that's right across the board, an overall value.
As I am talking about athletes that have attained their highest level (not guys who have to worry about oiling their own chain) then a boost of another 1% would be (IMO) huge.
 
python said:
you are perfectly entitled to your opinion (about the 1%) not coinciding with kielbasa's but making up definitions of what constitutes 'huge' in professional cycling where a well oiled bike chain friction takes up at least 2.5% of power generated 'proves nothing' (to use your own words).

Are you saying that some of the pro peloton will have better lubed chains than others?
 
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Dr. Maserati said:
All of it. (which is 100%, not sure what that would be in watts)
you engaged a poster kiebasa - who essentially agreed with you - in a hair splitting exchange whether 1% (IN A DOPING CONTEXT !) constitutes 'significant' (kiebasa's definition/characterization) or 'huge' (your definition/characterization).

my example of a chain friction was intended as a reference point to show just one of the multitude of factors that affect power and need to be factored in when evaluating numbers... m. index provided several more...an unpredictable puff of wind on a climb (helping/opposing a rider)... a wet/dry surface in an itt etc, they all can account for much more than 1% in a given situation for a given rider. that's why defining 1% in a doping context as huge vs significant or insignificant is a matter of opinion and can be interchangeable..that's why your opinion 'proved nothing' just as kiebasa's was not intended to prove anything.

science often struggles with the definition of 'significant' but generally refers to statistical terms - the number of standard deviation from a mean, something you failed to do but are perfectly entitled to define in your own terms.
 

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python said:
you engaged a poster kiebasa - who essentially agreed with you - in a hair splitting exchange whether 1% (IN A DOPING CONTEXT !) constitutes 'significant' (kiebasa's definition/characterization) or 'huge' (your definition/characterization).
I didn't engage them.

They decided to hair-split on what is significant or huge on a set of numbers that would have no correlation to my original point.

python said:
my example of a chain friction was intended as a reference point to show just one of the multitude of factors that affect power and need to be factored in when evaluating numbers... m. index provided several more...an unpredictable puff of wind on a climb (helping/opposing a rider)... a wet/dry surface in an itt etc, they all can account for much more than 1% in a given situation for a given rider. that's why defining 1% in a doping context as huge vs significant or insignificant is a matter of opinion and can be interchangeable..that's why your opinion 'proved nothing' just as kiebasa's was not intended to prove anything.

science often struggles with the definition of 'significant' but generally refers to statistical terms - the number of standard deviation from a mean, something you failed to do but are perfectly entitled to define in your own terms.
Ok, where does the term "huge" fit in to science terminology?
A. It doesn't.

That is why I used that simplistic term on a number I actually just made up to suggest that gains at that level would be huge.
 
We need to learn to "Agree to Diasagree".

1% can be huge if you loose the Tour de France by seconds (Maybe 20").

1% can be meaningless if you are riding clean and you are trying to get advantage based on clean methods.

Error in calculations are higher than 1% of course (~5-7% on extreme max and min values). But on reality it can make the difference at the finish line. We just don't get to see the actual numbers.

I hope I am making some sense.:)
 
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Dr. Maserati said:
I haven't revised my point, it remains the same - "even a gain of 1% to an elite athlete is huge".

You are perfectly entitled to not share that view but making up numbers with no relation to anything proves nothing.

I'm pretty sure I "unleashed" an equivalent of 10-15W of sustainable power (~5%), simply by switching to a new set of Michelin Pro3 tires over my Specialized training tires. Yes, rolling resistance can make a huge :) difference.
 
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Guys, yeah, if you lose a GT by 8 seconds, it can mean millions of dollars difference (huge!). But this being The Clinic and all, even so I don't see a GT contender doping for a gain of 4-5 W. Sorry, I just don't see it. Not getting stressed out by a fan, or skipping an interview is probably of more benefit.

Then again, maybe I'm just overestimating a pro rider's intelligence and in fact they do dope to gain 1% whilst picking fights with interviewers, partying late, and eating contaminated beef. After all, they think that getting a 2 second push from a support car actually makes a difference. :rolleyes:
 
kielbasa said:
Guys, yeah, if you lose a GT by 8 seconds, it can mean millions of dollars difference (huge!). But this being The Clinic and all, even so I don't see a GT contender doping for a gain of 4-5 W. Sorry, I just don't see it. Not getting stressed out by a fan, or skipping an interview is probably of more benefit.

Then again, maybe I'm just overestimating a pro rider's intelligence and in fact they do dope to gain 1% whilst picking fights with interviewers, partying late, and eating contaminated beef. After all, they think that getting a 2 second push from a support car actually makes a difference. :rolleyes:
Depends on the personality of the Cyclist, IMHO.

Sleeping well ~ 0-1% (Relative to other elite cyclists)
Eating Well ~ 0-1% (Relative to other elite cyclists)
Doping Well ~ 5%-15% (Against Clean Riders)
Not Doping Well ~1-5% (Against Clean Riders)
Doping well between two Elite Cyclists ~ 0-2%
Doping well between a talented elite cyclists versus a less talented elite cyclist ~ ????
Bicycle Performance~ 0% (If all are in similar conditions)

I pulled these numbers out of my A... My main point is that everything is relative. Numbers can be big depending on its reference.:)