Stybar- CX World Champion

Page 3 - Get up to date with the latest news, scores & standings from the Cycling News Community.
pancakes said:
Hi Andy, I've read your conversation with Cloxxki and I do see your train of thought.
Your 'Talent comes through regardless' is a something I would politely disagree with. Yes if nobody doped at all then those physically and tactically more able (more talented I suppose) would absolutely rise to the top, I agree.
But that is not how cycling works, sadly.

Cloxxki was talking about GVA and Superprestige cross races which would have had a mix of Elite MC (pro) and Elite ZC (am) riders. Because of my own personal experiences living and racing in Europe I would be totally amazed if those particular races had 100% clean fields (excuse the cross pun).

Your theory of being able to challenge as a clean talent rich amateur works to a point.
If a couple of riders are doping then it would of course be realistic to make the podium.
If seven or eight riders are doping then you could realistically hope/aim to make the top ten.
What happens if 30+ riders are doping? Suddenly you are fighting to scrape a top twenty or thirty. Your 28th place in the newspaper the next day won't include a (c) for clean after your name. Everyone will look and think 'Pffff only 28th, rubbish!'

National Level races may not be as clean as you think.

It's great that Cloxxki wrote about his experiences and I applaud his honesty!
I know how it feels.

I haven't joined in here to pick fights or start slanging matches but it's somewhere I can share what I know and experienced.
So please don't think I am attacking you when I ask did you race and where and what sort of era?
Hi Pancakes,
I'm not suggesting that National races are clean, just that the pool of competition is such, that a clean elite level rider will still figure towards the front of the race.
Obviously it is impossible to know how many riders lining up on the start line are doped, but from experience from the early nineties, to the present day, clean elite level riders will not be embarrassed.

In a given race, that rider may well end up in 28th, instead of in the top 10, but over the course of a season, that rider will be in the reckoning enough to notice them.

The discussion really comes from the OP suggesting that a rider being lapped and riding four levels below the leaders, are potentially having their chance of riding as a pro, taken away from them by dopers.

A rider with that potential would not be outclassed to that margin.

My experience? Riding as an elite amateur in the 90s.
 
Sep 2, 2012
36
0
0
andy1234 said:
Hi Pancakes,
I'm not suggesting that National races are clean, just that the pool of competition is such, that a clean elite level rider will still figure towards the front of the race.
Obviously it is impossible to know how many riders lining up on the start line are doped, but from experience from the early nineties, to the present day, clean elite level riders will not be embarrassed.

In a given race, that rider may well end up in 28th, instead of in the top 10, but over the course of a season, that rider will be in the reckoning enough to notice them.

The discussion really comes from the OP suggesting that a rider being lapped and riding four levels below the leaders, are potentially having their chance of riding as a pro, taken away from them by dopers.

A rider with that potential would not be outclassed to that margin.

My experience? Riding as an elite amateur in the 90s.
Andy, I see what you are saying and in most countries it was true in the 90s and probably is still true today.

The OP did say he was racing in Belgium, certainly the GVA race would have been there.

Belgium does take it's cross very seriously indeed and so do it's riders, we all know that.
It would never surprise me if a talented amateur picked the wrong race to try his hand and found himself quickly lapped by the 'hammer pilots' who were 'nuclear' that day. As you say, a season would be give a better idea of a riders capability.

On the road in Belgium EPO started hitting the Elite ZCs (amateurs) races around '96 '97 (or we started hearing things and noticing ridiculous things).
So if the OP was doing his crosses after that period.........ouch!

To make you laugh, and the OP, I had a 'lapping' experience once.....on the road!
LSS. Kermesse race, pan flat, 120km long in 1998 or '99 I think. I'm in break of four after 30km. French lad, Belgian MTBer (Worlds and Olympic level) and a Lithuanian for company. 6-7 km laps. With about 40 to go Lithau decides to speed things up, bye bye French lad. With 30 to go Lithau decides to speed things up again.......and off he goes. Within a couple of kms we couldn't see him or the lead car. Me and mtber battered each other all the way to the finish.
As you may or may not know in kermesses they pull riders out as they get dropped too far behind. When we took the bell we heard the guy on the microphone shouting that we'd only just made it before being lapped! Lithau was not far behind us FFS! If we'd looked over our shoulders we could have seen him winning the race we were still doing!
Only three finished the whole distance that day. The winner was about 6 foot tall and my arms were bigger than his legs (think skinnier version of Froome) and best of all he'd never used anything more than 53x16-15 while we were busting a gut in the 13-12s.

It's not a dig at your theory but honestly talent counted for a lot less once the 'rocket fuel' became easily available. :eek:

Think we should make the OP go back and do a full cross season to check the theories ;)
 
Sep 2, 2012
36
0
0
Echoes said:
I haven't seen that interview but read comments about it in the book "Wuyts & Smeets". Wuyts quoting him saying it could be dangerous because his son is racing and could compete against Museeuw's son. Smeets added that Maassen - who followed Edwig's steps - also refused to discuss doping in public. "That's not for the people."

Dante raced his second year as junior last year. He's good but not as good as his cousin, Nathan (Gino's son), I think.

http://www.nieuwsblad.be/article/detail.aspx?articleid=BLNVE_20110628_005

Crazy how they both look like their fathers !
Echte Vlamingen!
In the interview Edwig didn't seem too worried if his son went a long way or not.
Must be tough to hand your son over to the pack of wolves that is cycling.
I think it may have been Wuyts that did the interview. Not really a fan of his, he could get off the fence more but he was good with EVH.
Best thing about Wuyts is when he has De Cauwer sat next to him!
 
Jan 20, 2013
897
0
0
pancakes said:
Echte Vlamingen!
In the interview Edwig didn't seem too worried if his son went a long way or not.
Must be tough to hand your son over to the pack of wolves that is cycling.I think it may have been Wuyts that did the interview. Not really a fan of his, he could get off the fence more but he was good with EVH.
Best thing about Wuyts is when he has De Cauwer sat next to him!
A new poster to the clinic, and already you're slip is showing. With the use of anthropomorphic metaphor to descrbe of those who run the sport of cycling is telling:)
 
pancakes said:
Andy, I see what you are saying and in most countries it was true in the 90s and probably is still true today.

The OP did say he was racing in Belgium, certainly the GVA race would have been there.

Belgium does take it's cross very seriously indeed and so do it's riders, we all know that.
It would never surprise me if a talented amateur picked the wrong race to try his hand and found himself quickly lapped by the 'hammer pilots' who were 'nuclear' that day. As you say, a season would be give a better idea of a riders capability.

On the road in Belgium EPO started hitting the Elite ZCs (amateurs) races around '96 '97 (or we started hearing things and noticing ridiculous things).
So if the OP was doing his crosses after that period.........ouch!

To make you laugh, and the OP, I had a 'lapping' experience once.....on the road!
LSS. Kermesse race, pan flat, 120km long in 1998 or '99 I think. I'm in break of four after 30km. French lad, Belgian MTBer (Worlds and Olympic level) and a Lithuanian for company. 6-7 km laps. With about 40 to go Lithau decides to speed things up, bye bye French lad. With 30 to go Lithau decides to speed things up again.......and off he goes. Within a couple of kms we couldn't see him or the lead car. Me and mtber battered each other all the way to the finish.
As you may or may not know in kermesses they pull riders out as they get dropped too far behind. When we took the bell we heard the guy on the microphone shouting that we'd only just made it before being lapped! Lithau was not far behind us FFS! If we'd looked over our shoulders we could have seen him winning the race we were still doing!
Only three finished the whole distance that day. The winner was about 6 foot tall and my arms were bigger than his legs (think skinnier version of Froome) and best of all he'd never used anything more than 53x16-15 while we were busting a gut in the 13-12s.

It's not a dig at your theory but honestly talent counted for a lot less once the 'rocket fuel' became easily available. :eek:

Think we should make the OP go back and do a full cross season to check the theories ;)
Thanks for the story Pancakes. A question though? Unless Lithau got popped for doping, how do you know he was?
I don't need an answer for that, but you get my point?

I'm not sure if you noticed though? You were very much at the pointy end of the race, even if Lithau was on a stormer....

FYI, I primarily rode in Italy. If you knew the amateur scene in the 90s, it was the mecca of doping....
 
Sep 2, 2012
36
0
0
horsinabout said:
A new poster to the clinic, and already you're slip is showing. With the use of anthropomorphic metaphor to descrbe of those who run the sport of cycling is telling:)
Arrgh I've been rumbled!

Every time I wonder if things are as bad I imagine I just think of McQuaid hanging that Gold medal on Vino........and remember that was 10 years ago or something.

You mean someone actually runs cycling? :rolleyes:
 
Sep 2, 2012
36
0
0
andy1234 said:
Thanks for the story Pancakes. A question though? Unless Lithau got popped for doping, how do you know he was?
I don't need an answer for that, but you get my point?

I'm not sure if you noticed though? You were very much at the pointy end of the race, even if Lithau was on a stormer....

FYI, I primarily rode in Italy. If you knew the amateur scene in the 90s, it was the mecca of doping....
I was 'reliably informed' by a DS & then someone who later got a life ban but tbh there is no way of telling when there is no testing. So in court he'd be a free man.

Benjamin Van Itterbeek did it to us almost weekly. One race around Waregem he soloed for 80 km with 7 or 8 of us chasing, proper taking the p*ss.
When he hung his wheels up he did an interview with HUMO (Belgian satire rag) and basically said he'd never done a day clean and listed his methods!!!
Cheers Benjamin! From memory he was treated for alcohol problems caused by drinking to get to sleep because his doping would keep him up for days!

Pointy end of the race? There was only one bloke in the race, we were just spectators on bikes :)

Seriously though, yes I was always up there and from time to time winning and you are right to a degree about talent shining through but when the serious stuff was getting used it didn't matter who you were or what you'd done you were made to look '4 cats lower'.

I've seen it posted about 'wannabes getting over themselves' and 'doping or dopers never stopped anyone going further' I think Vermin boss Vaughters says something along those lines. But if a rider had a strong anti doping stance back then (and I can't see why it would be any different now) he wouldn't have been able to agree to race pro as for the most 'it' was seen as an obligation not an option.
So doping and dopers did (and I would imagine still do) impede or halt riders progression in the sport.

Anyway we are miles off topic....... so Stybar? Confessional book out in four or five years.....
 
pancakes said:
In the interview Edwig didn't seem too worried if his son went a long way or not.
Must be tough to hand your son over to the pack of wolves that is cycling.
In recent interviews, Edwig seemed confident that things have changed and that it is probably more possible for clean rides to perform now than it was in his/your era.

Not a fan of De Cauwer. My favourite is Herijgers.

By the way it's funny that you're talking about Van Itterbeeck because in the amateur ranks he was Van Hooydonck's main opponent (but 2 years older), as I posted here.

Suddenly he then became 1991 Belgian champion and in 1993 he was 9th at Paris-Roubaix (after an aggressive ride) but that's the best he did in the pro ranks. :D
 
Thread starter Similar threads Forum Replies Date
the delgados The Clinic 19

ASK THE COMMUNITY