The "talented" myth

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Jul 21, 2012
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EnacheV said:
They were normal people in a sea of doping worshipers. I'm talking about these days guys, not EPO era ones.

And i bet you can 100% pinpoint, like Mafalda, "the elite few who won the genetic lottery".

Are you sure you are not Riis or Brailsford ? With this knowledge you can rule the cycling.

Also putting Armstrong and Froome in the same sentence is trolling. When you make ridiculous claims would be nice to back them up. But you don;t have to, i guess.
I know it must hurt that 99% of the forum thinks your hero is a doper, but why do you have to make troll threads like this? It serves no purpose at all.

You were the one that started making claims about youth and doping, it would be nice if you had some links or evidence to back it up, otherwise I think we can safely assume that you were just trolling, as usual.
 
Alpechraxler said:
I suppose he won a lot of races back then because of his superior sprint ability. So he did later and the doping just had 2 purposes: First be up there with the front group to contest for the win in the sprint Second the recovery aspect or to be up there the next day again. I guess guys like him even profit a bit more from doping than a pure "Diesel"
Do you have his results from back then to hand? I'm willing to bet he won plenty of them without recourse to a sprint.

The guy had talent as a cyclist from the moment he got on one. He also doped, and at times likely quite heavily. We know that he was doping at age 24 (this is when bag #18 dates from), but we don't know when he began. But I'd also wager it wasn't when he was 11. Now, I don't see a problem in your justifications for why he would dope and how it would work for him, but who do you think of when you consider a pure "Diesel"? Would you consider that Valverde, who demonstrated talent from the word go, benefits more from doping than somebody who didn't demonstrate that immediate talent yet has doped later in their career? It all seems to depend on where we stand.

But the fact that he annihilated youth fields for years is why many people have contended that if cycling was clean there's still a chance Alejandro Valverde would be among the names at the front. I think it was somebody like Cipo who said something along the lines of "Basso was a big engine who doped, di Luca just doped". Who's a super responder? You don't know. Clearly whoever was responsible for the quote I just paraphrased felt Basso was a talented cyclist who could compete in a clean peloton while di Luca could not. We'll never find out, I guess.
 
Jun 12, 2010
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I think his two LBL wins demonstrate it. 2006 for example Basso is in the front group. 2008 Frank Schleck. Its nice for them to be up there but they never contest for the win. Without doping he probably wouln't make it to the first group and would win the sprint for lets say ninth place. So probably there are a lot of people in the peleton with a good sprint or a better sprint than valverde but they are never able to show something like that in a LBL.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qHNIY7QL18A
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Chotwxc-J2o

I don't really know about his junior years. But i just suppose that if you didn't drop him on the route he must have outsprited his companions a lot of the time. It's also possible that he often soloed to victory.
 
Aug 10, 2010
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Cycling absolutely needs the "talented myth." The sport is so filthy with cheating, that the "true fans" need to be able to root for a mythical talented clean rider who is a paragon of integrity. This mythical man is both a true thoroughbred and a noble underdog. The "true fan" empathizes with this mythical talent because he has been deprived of his just rewards by Lance Armstrong, other "donkey" dopers, and a corrupt UCI. The "who is clean" / "who is dirty" dialog is the "true fan" struggling to find his or her talented and noble hero.

Looking for a hero in a cesspool? Well, whatever . . ..
 
MarkvW said:
Cycling absolutely needs the "talented myth." The sport is so filthy with cheating, that the "true fans" need to be able to root for a mythical talented clean rider who is a paragon of integrity. This mythical man is both a true thoroughbred and a noble underdog. The "true fan" empathizes with this mythical talent because he has been deprived of his just rewards by Lance Armstrong, other "donkey" dopers, and a corrupt UCI. The "who is clean" / "who is dirty" dialog is the "true fan" struggling to find his or her talented and noble hero.

Looking for a hero in a cesspool? Well, whatever . . ..
The "talented myth" has nothing to do with who is clean and who is dirty. It is to do with who would be competitive if all was clean. It is to differentiate the athletes who showed the talent to be top level cyclists and then used dope to accentuate or perpetuate that, from the athletes who could be considered chemically-created golems.

Both categories are still cheats.
 

IrishBias

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Oct 27, 2013
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Benotti69 said:
Go through the history of GT winners prior to EPO and you will see that GT talent shows itself early.

This post is trying to ignore all the evidence that has pointed to GT talent being a given from birth and not from a blood bag or pill bottle.

Froome showed no potential, neither did Wigans.

The last 3 GT winners have been hailed as clean,
Wasn't the last GT winner Horner? Or is GT only le Tour de France.
 
Benotti69 said:
Go through the history of GT winners prior to EPO and you will see that GT talent shows itself early.

This post is trying to ignore all the evidence that has pointed to GT talent being a given from birth and not from a blood bag or pill bottle.

Froome showed no potential, neither did Wigans.

The last 3 GT winners have been hailed as clean, but if we scratch the surface of those claiming this, we find Evans, Wigans and Froome's wins extremely suspicious. And that they won those GTs when McQauid was running the UCI gives me not a jot of confidence in the testing.
Actually Wiggo won Fleche du Sud, Cinturion a Mallorca and a stage at L'Avenir as a junior.
 
May 27, 2012
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Libertine Seguros said:
The "talented myth" has nothing to do with who is clean and who is dirty. It is to do with who would be competitive if all was clean. It is to differentiate the athletes who showed the talent to be top level cyclists and then used dope to accentuate or perpetuate that, from the athletes who could be considered chemically-created golems.

Both categories are still cheats.
Don't get too worked up about MarkvW's rants. He's still angry that he believed the Armstrong myth
 
Aug 10, 2010
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Libertine Seguros said:
The "talented myth" has nothing to do with who is clean and who is dirty. It is to do with who would be competitive if all was clean. It is to differentiate the athletes who showed the talent to be top level cyclists and then used dope to accentuate or perpetuate that, from the athletes who could be considered chemically-created golems.

Both categories are still cheats.
But why do we care about who the "talented" riders are if "talented riders" do not determine the outcome of races? A talented and clean rider would avoid a rigged game like the UCI.
 
MatParker117 said:
Actually Wiggo won Fleche du Sud, Cinturion a Mallorca and a stage at L'Avenir as a junior.
The stage of L'Avenir was not until he was 23. The other two were when he was 21, so U23 rather than Juniors.

Even so, his results do not predict his future level. The track focus comes into that, but he wasn't even winning prologues, the one thing on the road he was specifically targeting, all that often. His CQ progress chart looks like a Javier Guillén stage profile.
 
MarkvW said:
But why do we care about who the "talented" riders are if "talented riders" do not determine the outcome of races? A talented and clean rider would avoid a rigged game like the UCI.
but the point is that talented riders often DO determine the outcome of the races. It's just that many of them are among the dopers, it just doesn't look as transparently ridiculous as when a rider who does not have a top record as a kid, youth, junior and/or U23 is determining the outcomes of the races. The thread was started by somebody upset that riders who had shown talent at a young age - examples being Valverde or Nibali - were not being subject to the same ridicule as riders who had undergone miraculous transformations into worldbeaters - examples being the likes of Froome.

Alejandro Valverde is a good example because he WAS a talented rider as a kid, so there is no 'transformation' of his skills, he just kept developing until he was a top rider in the world. Somewhere along the line, he became a doper. If we operate under the assumption that he is a doper, we do not know where he stopped being carried on talent alone and where he started being carried on a combination of talent and drugs (and we don't know in what proportion the talent and drugs were).

I'll use Mauro Santambrogio as my counterpoint, simply because a) Froome's not been caught for anything and b) picking Froome will only continue the arguments. Santambrogio hasn't exactly been known for squeaky clean behaviour in the past, but he had been in the peloton long enough at around the same level that we felt we had a reasonable grasp of what his expected level was, whether he was using doping to be there or not. As a result, when he suddenly started juicing and performing to a level far in excess of what had appeared to be his talent level, it looked ridiculous and everybody called it out, because we felt we knew where he stopped being carried on talent alone, and the difference was likely drugs. Ergo we can see immediately the difference that doping makes to a rider at Santambrogio's level, something we are not able to do with Valverde, because we don't know what performances of his are realistically usable as a guide to his clean talent level.
 
Libertine Seguros said:
Even so, his results do not predict his future level. The track focus comes into that, but he wasn't even winning prologues, the one thing on the road he was specifically targeting, all that often. His CQ progress chart looks like a Javier Guillén stage profile.
A descent finish after a HC climb? No way.
 
Aug 10, 2010
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Libertine Seguros said:
but the point is that talented riders often DO determine the outcome of the races. It's just that many of them are among the dopers, it just doesn't look as transparently ridiculous as when a rider who does not have a top record as a kid, youth, junior and/or U23 is determining the outcomes of the races. The thread was started by somebody upset that riders who had shown talent at a young age - examples being Valverde or Nibali - were not being subject to the same ridicule as riders who had undergone miraculous transformations into worldbeaters - examples being the likes of Froome.

Alejandro Valverde is a good example because he WAS a talented rider as a kid, so there is no 'transformation' of his skills, he just kept developing until he was a top rider in the world. Somewhere along the line, he became a doper. If we operate under the assumption that he is a doper, we do not know where he stopped being carried on talent alone and where he started being carried on a combination of talent and drugs (and we don't know in what proportion the talent and drugs were).

I'll use Mauro Santambrogio as my counterpoint, simply because a) Froome's not been caught for anything and b) picking Froome will only continue the arguments. Santambrogio hasn't exactly been known for squeaky clean behaviour in the past, but he had been in the peloton long enough at around the same level that we felt we had a reasonable grasp of what his expected level was, whether he was using doping to be there or not. As a result, when he suddenly started juicing and performing to a level far in excess of what had appeared to be his talent level, it looked ridiculous and everybody called it out, because we felt we knew where he stopped being carried on talent alone, and the difference was likely drugs. Ergo we can see immediately the difference that doping makes to a rider at Santambrogio's level, something we are not able to do with Valverde, because we don't know what performances of his are realistically usable as a guide to his clean talent level.
Your reasoning would work for me, except for the fact that modern doping (EPO) doesn't hit everybody equally. Some people derive vastly better benefits than others. I like the idea of using power output to fix the upper limit of "clean" riding, but unless and until more precise datasets become available, it's impossible to distinguish a "clean rider" from a rider who isn't a particularly great "responder" to EPO. It is also hard to imagine a talented rider, at the pro level, who wouldn't be taking every kind of dope that he could in order to win the race. Every rider wants to proclaim a "new generation," but generation after generation pro cycling has been about doping.
 
EnacheV said:
I hear a lot : "performance from nowhere" versus "talent from young age".

Imo the youngsters that beat everything from start have higher chances to be just young dopers, most likely from well established doping cultures, where coaches introduce them to doping from young age.

Especially since you can dope all you want when young because there is almost no doping control at lower level races or junior races.

That's to be clear why it makes me puke when i hear "but X showed talent from young age".

Conclusion : higher chances to be clean if no results at young age. Higher chances to be doping youngster if you are "talented".
Damn. Forget Wonderlance, you might just be the funniest poster on this forum.



I do admire your persistence.
 
EnacheV said:
I hear a lot : "performance from nowhere" versus "talent from young age".

Imo the youngsters that beat everything from start have higher chances to be just young dopers, most likely from well established doping cultures, where coaches introduce them to doping from young age.

Especially since you can dope all you want when young because there is almost no doping control at lower level races or junior races.

That's to be clear why it makes me puke when i hear "but X showed talent from young age".

Conclusion : higher chances to be clean if no results at young age. Higher chances to be doping youngster if you are "talented".
 
MarkvW said:
Your reasoning would work for me, except for the fact that modern doping (EPO) doesn't hit everybody equally. Some people derive vastly better benefits than others. I like the idea of using power output to fix the upper limit of "clean" riding, but unless and until more precise datasets become available, it's impossible to distinguish a "clean rider" from a rider who isn't a particularly great "responder" to EPO. It is also hard to imagine a talented rider, at the pro level, who wouldn't be taking every kind of dope that he could in order to win the race. Every rider wants to proclaim a "new generation," but generation after generation pro cycling has been about doping.
The bolded is what makes following pro cycling so frustrating - we pretty much all agree with that statement.

So, logic says that if we go back to when riders were younger, had less resources and had less "investment" from their teams than they are getting now they are older and established we should be able to get some idea of if they were truly talented or purely creations of doping.

Libertine's example of Valverde is a good one - incredible as a junior, he was almost invincible until he started racing other world class juniors, where he still won quite regularly.

It pains me to say it but Michael Rogers was another in this category despite being a Ferrari client. Even compared to other guys the same age who turned into solid pros (Hayman, Gerrans, Lancaster, Sutherland etc) he was another level above again (I know, I was pack fill at quite a few junior races with these guys - I was in their age group).

All jokes aside, Hincapie looks like he may have been another one with his 50+ race winning streak as a teen against Cat 1's and local pros.

Guys like Froome, Di Luca and Gerrans (yes, there's Aussies too :eek:) who didn't have the strong junior results and needed several attempts to break through and/or "just happened" to break through at the right time ring alarm bells for a reason.
 
Sep 13, 2010
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Of course it's all myth. We all know that tricycle races are all about luck. No amount of talent or PED's will make a kid go in the right direction.

This kid was just lucky.
 
Oct 21, 2012
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This thread.



The idea of anybody doping before turning professional (excluding those who come from a fabulously wealthy family) is ludicrous. How would they afford it? EPO must be cheaper than water everywhere except the UK and Kenya.

And that's before getting into the vast number of historical precedents that all but confirm that you can't have guys showing up and winning Grand Tours having done absolutely nothing as an amateur or a young professional; without it being a sure fire sign of some form of cheating.
 

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