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Thor has "never seen doping"

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Jul 2, 2009
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Alpe d'Huez said:
I love watching him race, and he seems like a friendly sort, but this is akin to the US military's "Don't ask, don't tell" policy about gays, while they all pretend to ignore the giant white elephant in the room.

There's a good chance he never has doped, but there's also very easy to read between the lines to believe he knew exactly which people to avoid/ask, and which doors to avoid/open regarding doping. If he's telling the total truth here, he simply did a good job of not looking and not asking, so he never had to tell.


Given that there's never been any suggestion of team wide doping at either CA or Cervelo, anything that went on (if it did) would have been done on an individual basis.

So, if they did this, how do you suppose they did it? Sneak off while no-one's looking to get sorted, discretion being the keyword? Or sit around in a team meeting hooked up to a blood bag shouting "Hey, look everyone, I'm doping"?

Hushovd may have had suspicions about people, but they're hardly going to get the syringes out in front of him.

Doping is done on a need-to-know basis. It isn't some sort of group activity with family and friends invited.
 
Oct 16, 2009
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&quot said:
What I don't get about Russians and doping in biathlon/XC-skiing, is that they aren't that dominant. If they were the only ones doing EPO/blood doping, shouldn't they be miles ahead? Yet (IIRC, it's been a while since winter) it's the Norwegians who dominate male biathlon, while the Germans are dominant on the women's side. In XC the Norwegian/Swedish teams are as good as or better than the Russians.

Maybe the sports and the talent pools are so small that it's possible for clean athletes to compete with (less gifted) EPO users, or perhaps the races favor the "sprinters" too much.

Or perhaps the dopers aren't able to dominate because the testing actually works? Imagine that. :)
 
Mar 4, 2010
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goggalor said:
What I don't get about Russians and doping in biathlon/XC-skiing, is that they aren't that dominant. If they were the only ones doing EPO/blood doping, shouldn't they be miles ahead? Yet (IIRC, it's been a while since winter) it's the Norwegians who dominate male biathlon, while the Germans are dominant on the women's side. In XC the Norwegian/Swedish teams are as good as or better than the Russians.

Maybe the sports and the talent pools are so small that it's possible for clean athletes to compete with (less gifted) EPO users, or perhaps the races favor the "sprinters" too much.

Or perhaps the dopers aren't able to dominate because the testing actually works? Imagine that. :)

Yes, that is strange... While plenty of the now banned russians are world or olympic champions they certainly weren't in a different league. I believe Iourieva and Achatova were no 1 and 2 in the biathlon WC before testing positive, but they were both excellent marksmen and even in peak form there were some considerably better skiers and some equally good skiers.

Iourieva definitely isn't physically talented at all though. These are results from the 2004 Junior World Championships. Note that Iourieva was born in -83 while the winner was born in -87 and that one penalty means roughly 25 seconds.

http://services.biathlonresults.com/Results.aspx?RaceId=BT0304JWRLCH__JWSP

Losing roughly 3 minutes in ski time to a 17 yo when you're 21, in a race that takes about 18-19 minutes discounting the shootings, implies a pretty huge gulf in natural talent.

It's the same story in XC. Very good results at the championships but matched by the scandinavians which is a bit fishy.

Russian prepatores seem pretty incompetent though. Every winter a few of them will get health bans for "dangerous" increases in Hb concentration.

The only ridiculously dominant performance I can recall in XC (or men's anyway) was by Johann Mühlegg in Salt Lake City 2002. A german who competed for and trained in Spain. Totally destroyed everyone, and we know the austrians were charged then.
 
I can relate to Thor's comments. For most of my life I have never came across drugs either. It's a secret club that requires membership for admission. To get this membership you need to be invited by those already part of the lifestyle. As a non drinker, non smoker, people picked up on the fact that I wouldn't be partial to an invitation to partake in drugs. Maybe Thor is the same. Maybe he puts out the signals that he's not interested and so he doesn't get exposed to it?
 
goggalor said:
What I don't get about Russians and doping in biathlon/XC-skiing, is that they aren't that dominant. If they were the only ones doing EPO/blood doping, shouldn't they be miles ahead? Yet (IIRC, it's been a while since winter) it's the Norwegians who dominate male biathlon, while the Germans are dominant on the women's side. In XC the Norwegian/Swedish teams are as good as or better than the Russians.

Maybe the sports and the talent pools are so small that it's possible for clean athletes to compete with (less gifted) EPO users, or perhaps the races favor the "sprinters" too much.

Or perhaps the dopers aren't able to dominate because the testing actually works? Imagine that. :)


Norway has the biggest market in XC skiing and is also among the top markets in biathlon, so naturally if any news broke out that a Norwegian athlete tested positive, it would be earth shattering. Don't worry, skiers are well protected there. I don't know if it's to the extreme of Armstrong paying the UCI, but it's certainly there. The problem with the Russians is that they seem to be outcasts. They are still doing it their way and believe that everyone else is cheating, so naturally they do it as well. This is a very complicated case. It is well known that scandinavians don't get along well with eastern european competitors, so you have to take it with a bit of salt. Norway's best female xc skier, Marit Bjorgen (actually more than half of that team) is on anti-asthma medications that are normally on the WADA prohibited list, but once again, it is thrown out because Norway is THE nation, so it is pretty much ignored or worse, WADA and the international ski federation (FIS) clears them of any wrongdoing. We are living in a sport world that is filled with corruption, manipulation, cheating, lying, under the rug contracts, hiding, etc. For what? For money and control. What some don't realize is that this is quickly turning for the worse for pretty much every sport, individual or team. Fans are more angry, viewership is decreasing, and involvement in sports will be small in comparison with the glory years (whatever/whenever that was).
I know I am feeling angry and don't really know what to make of it.
 
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Although of topic ... a response is necessary.

Maybe the sports and the talent pools are so small that it's possible for clean athletes to compete with (less gifted) EPO users, or perhaps the races favor the "sprinters" too much.

Or perhaps the dopers aren't able to dominate because the testing actually works? Imagine that. :)[/QUOTE]

Doping or not, current nations will cease to dominate as soon as the African nations (Kenya, Ethiopia and Morocco etc ...) develop programs to train their athletes in xc/biathlon. When is the last time you ever saw an Brit win the miracle mile or a marathon? :eek:
 
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goggalor said:
What I don't get about Russians and doping in biathlon/XC-skiing, is that they aren't that dominant. If they were the only ones doing EPO/blood doping, shouldn't they be miles ahead? Yet (IIRC, it's been a while since winter) it's the Norwegians who dominate male biathlon, while the Germans are dominant on the women's side. In XC the Norwegian/Swedish teams are as good as or better than the Russians.

Maybe the sports and the talent pools are so small that it's possible for clean athletes to compete with (less gifted) EPO users, or perhaps the races favor the "sprinters" too much.

Or perhaps the dopers aren't able to dominate because the testing actually works? Imagine that. :)

Doping or not is irrelevant really. Current nations will cease to dominate as soon as the African nations (Kenya, Ethiopia and Morocco etc ...) develop programs to train their athletes in xc/biathlon. When is the last time you ever saw an Brit win the miracle mile or a marathon? :eek:
 
Monopoly said:
Doping or not is irrelevant really. Current nations will cease to dominate as soon as the African nations (Kenya, Ethiopia and Morocco etc ...) develop programs to train their athletes in xc/biathlon. When is the last time you ever saw an Brit win the miracle mile or a marathon? :eek:

Oh sweet jesus! I would pay to see the day when an African nation starts dominating in winter endurance sports! No, I am not being sarcastic. You are right, their anaerobic capacity is almost unparallel. There have been athletes from the African continent that have tried to compete but it was mostly a look at me, this is my first race/on snow moment ever kind of deal. It was sort of funny, because they really haven't done mutch or any at all, but it's part of the 'olympic spirit.' I would love to see it happen, hopefully it will in the not too distant future. At least one or two athletes!
 
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BullsFan22 said:
Oh sweet jesus! I would pay to see the day when an African nation starts dominating in winter endurance sports! No, I am not being sarcastic. You are right, their anaerobic capacity is almost unparallel. There have been athletes from the African continent that have tried to compete but it was mostly a look at me, this is my first race/on snow moment ever kind of deal. It was sort of funny, because they really haven't done mutch or any at all, but it's part of the 'olympic spirit.' I would love to see it happen, hopefully it will in the not too distant future. At least one or two athletes!

Or ... just provide the African nations with a cycling program. Talk about a restructuring of the sport! The Americans and Europeans couldn't hope to compete even if doping was legalized for the sad lot. :eek:
 
Monopoly said:
Or ... just provide the African nations with a cycling program. Talk about a restructuring of the sport! The Americans and Europeans couldn't hope to compete even if doping was legalized for the sad lot. :eek:

Haha. Good one. It would be exciting. I think we also need more athletes from Asia and South America. I know sponsorship and money is the biggest issue, but I feel if they can somehow create enough of a stir there, things would be really interesting and exciting. Sports would grow more and there would be something positive that all of us can talk about!
 
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BullsFan22 said:
Oh sweet jesus! I would pay to see the day when an African nation starts dominating in winter endurance sports! No, I am not being sarcastic. You are right, their anaerobic capacity is almost unparallel. There have been athletes from the African continent that have tried to compete but it was mostly a look at me, this is my first race/on snow moment ever kind of deal. It was sort of funny, because they really haven't done mutch or any at all, but it's part of the 'olympic spirit.' I would love to see it happen, hopefully it will in the not too distant future. At least one or two athletes!

Oi!

All I can state in response to this is: Seriously?

As someone who has spent the cumulative of a decade on the continent of Africa, I can assure you that there is simply no way this will ever happen. Of all the draws to Western culture sports, football, track and field, and even basketball are all monumentally higher on the prestige scale above cycling or "winter" endurance sports... Apart from the logistical impossibility of having Congolese speed skaters, or Nigerian skate-skiers, as there is no ice or environments for these aptitudes to develop, there is a scoff about some of these sports as simply below the culturally significant ones mentioned afore.

Can they develop into formidable athletes in these disciplines? Sure. Will they? Never.
 
Colm.Murphy said:
Oi!

All I can state in response to this is: Seriously?

As someone who has spent the cumulative of a decade on the continent of Africa, I can assure you that there is simply no way this will ever happen. Of all the draws to Western culture sports, football, track and field, and even basketball are all monumentally higher on the prestige scale above cycling or "winter" endurance sports... Apart from the logistical impossibility of having Congolese speed skaters, or Nigerian skate-skiers, as there is no ice or environments for these aptitudes to develop, there is a scoff about some of these sports as simply below the culturally significant ones mentioned afore.

Can they develop into formidable athletes in these disciplines? Sure. Will they? Never.


Oh don't be such a party crasher! We live and hope, haha.
 
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Monopoly said:
When is the last time you ever saw an Brit win the miracle mile or a marathon? :eek:

Off the top of my head... New York City Marathon in 2008 and 2007 (and the NYC half in 2009), London and Helsinki (World Championships) in 2005 and at least half a dozen other major marathon victories in the last decade.
 
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He doesn't deny it goes on. Seems to me he's saying no one ever flaunted it in front of him or he never caught anyone in the act. That isn't that hard to believe. I guess that even amongst co-conspirators, the whole act of procurement, transactions, transportation and administration of PEDs is pretty secretive. The fewer people who know what's going on the better.

I mean, at summer camp, I never saw anyone masturbating, but I don't doubt that it went on, everyone was just very careful to not let others see them doing it.
 
Feb 21, 2010
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BullsFan22 said:
Oh don't be such a party crasher! We live and hope, haha.

Sorry.

I have a deep seeded love for many Africans. Too much suffering there to worry about sport. Really gut wrenching stuff. Sports can lift spirits and people, so I don't mean to rain on the parade. Just making sure you have an understanding that folks are working to eat, live and simply not die over most of the continent.
 
Aug 13, 2009
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BullsFan22 said:
Oh sweet jesus! I would pay to see the day when an African nation starts dominating in winter endurance sports! No, I am not being sarcastic. You are right, their anaerobic capacity is almost unparallel. There have been athletes from the African continent that have tried to compete but it was mostly a look at me, this is my first race/on snow moment ever kind of deal. It was sort of funny, because they really haven't done mutch or any at all, but it's part of the 'olympic spirit.' I would love to see it happen, hopefully it will in the not too distant future. At least one or two athletes!

Not exactly.

Vo2 is not the critical measurement in the marathon like it is in Cycling and X-Country skiing. It is possible to win major marathons and even set world records with a Vo2 that most GT contenders or Skier would laugh at.
 
Race Radio said:
Not exactly.

Vo2 is not the critical measurement in the marathon like it is in Cycling and X-Country skiing. It is possible to win major marathons and even set world records with a Vo2 that most GT contenders or Skier would laugh at.

It doesn't hurt that they are born and raised at higher altitudes. I am no expert, far from it, but being a ski racer myself, I know that Vo2 is important in skiing, but you are definitely right about marathon running. For starters, different muscle groups, more stress on the body in running, smooth muscles, etc.
 
goggalor said:
What I don't get about Russians and doping in biathlon/XC-skiing, is that they aren't that dominant. If they were the only ones doing EPO/blood doping, shouldn't they be miles ahead? Yet (IIRC, it's been a while since winter) it's the Norwegians who dominate male biathlon, while the Germans are dominant on the women's side. In XC the Norwegian/Swedish teams are as good as or better than the Russians.

Maybe the sports and the talent pools are so small that it's possible for clean athletes to compete with (less gifted) EPO users, or perhaps the races favor the "sprinters" too much.

Or perhaps the dopers aren't able to dominate because the testing actually works? Imagine that. :)

Well, it's very hard to examine the effects of doping in biathlon since the physical level between the atheletes vary a lot. Some riders are rather slow on the skies but very good at shooting while others are very good skiers but miss a lot more shots. Doping would mainly effect the skiing times but that doesn't necessarily mean you dominate each race. Overall it's very hard for a rider or a nation to dominate at all since results vary so much from race to race. I think doping would mainly increase the consistency of a biathlete rather than make them dominant.
 

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Monopoly said:
Or ... just provide the African nations with a cycling program. Talk about a restructuring of the sport! The Americans and Europeans couldn't hope to compete even if doping was legalized for the sad lot. :eek:

I am sure that the Africans would do great in cycling. I do not think they want to point 1. Why would a phenomenal athlete not want to play soccer,basketball or football where one could make major money compared to the pittance of pro-cycling?
 
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Race Radio said:
Not exactly.

Vo2 is not the critical measurement in the marathon like it is in Cycling and X-Country skiing. It is possible to win major marathons and even set world records with a Vo2 that most GT contenders or Skier would laugh at.

Hmm ... by these stats ... my guess is that they are not laughing. :eek:

VO2 Max Rates:
Norwegian - Bjørn Dæhlie (XC Skier) 96.0 mL/kg/min
Ethiopian - Haile Gebrselassie (Marathoner) 95.2 mL/kg/min
Kenyan - John Ngugi Kamau (XC Runner) 85.0 mL/kg/min
American - Lance Armstrong (Cyclist) 83.8 mL/kg/min

VO2max Comparison:
Recent studies reveal that Kenyan and Scandinavian runners actually possess similar VO2 max values, yet Kenyan runners dominate running events over 5 km compared to their Scandinavian competitors.
Kenyan Elites- 79.9
Scandinavian elites- 79.2

Saltin B, Larsen H, Terrados N, et al. Aerobic exercise capacity at sea level and at altitude in Kenyans compared with Scandinavians.
Scand J Med Sci Sports 1995;5(4):209-221.

Thus ... one should be able to determine that with the V02max being equal, the African nations would dominate XC skiing and GT's if trained in these disciplines. One has to remember that VO2 Max is but one element (although an important one) that determines the superiority of an athlete.
 
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ingsve said:
Well, it's very hard to examine the effects of doping in biathlon since the physical level between the atheletes vary a lot. Some riders are rather slow on the skies but very good at shooting while others are very good skiers but miss a lot more shots. Doping would mainly effect the skiing times but that doesn't necessarily mean you dominate each race. Overall it's very hard for a rider or a nation to dominate at all since results vary so much from race to race. I think doping would mainly increase the consistency of a biathlete rather than make them dominant.

A biathlete will benefit from blood-doping both in skiing and shooting - you can arrive at the shooting range fresher, and your heart rate will drop quicker, which will help a lot. The targets are easy enough to hit at near 100% consistency when your heart rate is 60 - try doing the same at heart rate 160.
 
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Monopoly said:
VO2 Max Rates:

Greg LeMond, (Cyclist) 92.5 mL/kg/min
Matt Carpenter (Marathoner) 90.2 mL/kg/min
John Ngugi Kamau (5 times world cross country champ) 85.0 mL/kg/min
Lance Armstrong (Cyclist) 83.8 mL/kg/min

VO2max Comparison:
Kenyan Elites- 79.9
Scandinavian elites- 79.2

Saltin B, Larsen H, Terrados N, et al. Aerobic exercise capacity at sea level and at altitude in Kenyans compared with Scandinavians.
Scand J Med Sci Sports 1995;5(4):209-221.

Hmm ... by these stats ... my guess is that they are not laughing. :eek:

Thank you for proving my point. Kenyan runners did not have a significant difference in Vo2 from Caucasians.

Notice I wrote marathon runners. Very few of the top African's have had their Vo2 measured and if they have they do not make their numbers public. The Marathon has a long history of top runners who did not have high Vo2's. Dereck Clayton held the record for 20 years and he was only at 69. Frank Shorter won Olympic gold with a 71. The list of highest Vo2's is made up mostly of cyclists and Skiers.
 
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Race Radio said:
Thank you for proving my point. Kenyan runners did not have a significant difference in Vo2 from Caucasians.

Notice I wrote marathon runners. Very few of the top African's have had their Vo2 measured and if they have they do not make their numbers public. The Marathon has a long history of top runners who did not have high Vo2's. Dereck Clayton held the record for 20 years and he was only at 69. Frank Shorter won Olympic gold with a 71. The list of highest Vo2's is made up mostly of cyclists and Skiers.

Actually ... I think you are missing your attempt at making a point at all. :p

You claimed that Marathon runners did not have a VO2 max comparable to that of XC skiers and cyclists. Well I just illustrated with documentation from a peer reviewed scientific journal that they in fact do (feel free to Google 'peer reviewed' if you didn't quite make it to grad school).

I digress ....

"Recent studies reveal that Kenyan and Scandinavian runners actually possess similar VO2 max values, yet Kenyan runners dominate all running events over 5 km compared to their Scandinavian competitors."

Hmm ... isn't Scandinavia the place where all those 'present day' XC skiing champions are made? Oh, oh ... not so, once the African nations take up the sport. In other words ... the African athletes possess the same VO2 max thresholds and yet are physiologically superior in other measures. :eek:
 
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