time to start suspending riders AND their team managers?

mastersracer

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Jun 8, 2010
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Looking through a list of doping cases in cycling, my impression is that there is a correlation between the probability of a rider testing positive and the identity of their team manager. There appear to be some glaring examples of clusters - Bruyneel and Riis stand out.

I don't have a dataset to play around with this, but was curious about what people thought about a policy whereby a team manager would receive a suspension when one of his riders tests positive. Perhaps 6 months for the first offense and some increasing penalties for subsequent ones. After some number, the manager is banned from the sport. Right now, the team manager has an incentive to - if not promote - at least ignore PED use. How about a scheme that actually provides disincentives to the team manager directly and shifts the burden of enforcement onto them?
 
Mar 17, 2012
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Yes, it´s right to point out Riis and Bruyneel. Both are the most successful DS besides Levevere in the past 10 years, and Riis had none and Bruyneel just one (Fuji Li for Clen) positive.

The thing about Riis getting new sponsors year after year is that he can guarantee a maximum of success in combination with a maximum of security of zero riders being tested positive.
 
Oct 6, 2010
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I personally would support some sort of action do be done about this however it would have to be in a structured and well announced way. IMO managers such as Bruyneel should be banned for life. However if a system like this was to be brought in i think it would be unfair to straight out ban a manager for one doping offence in their team. As of course they may have absolutely no knowledge of the doping of that rider.

If however there is at trend (a few riders caught) then that is when the manager should start to be punished as well. So maybe 1 caught = Warning, 2 = Fine and 3 bans start coming out for increasing periods of time etc...

Because, as you said managers today can just turn a blind eye to doping in their teams then state they had no association with doping, or knowledge of doping occurring in their team. So yes i think this would be a good move, however it would have to be implemented correctly maybe nothing how i suggested :D
 
Jan 30, 2011
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mastersracer said:
I don't have a dataset to play around with this, but was curious about what people thought about a policy whereby a team manager would receive a suspension when one of his riders tests positive
[facetious answer ahead]
I think we should extend that to society in general. When a child commits a crime, we should lock their parents away.
[/end of facetious answer]

I think Marcus has some good points, though I would extend that further.

Carrot and stick approaches to discipline also require carrots and not just sticks.

The UCI has a long way to go to support clean cycling before they can begin pushing responsibility on the DS and if they did so, there should also be some incentive offered to teams that maintain a clean sheet (eg. offering longer contracts in the World Tour so that clean teams are better placed to maintain sponsorship, etc.)
 
With plausible deniability I doubt it would be legally possible to go after team directors when just one or two riders test positive. How do you get to the doctors, coaches and soigneurs lurking in the shadows, not necessarily on a team's payroll?

Unfortunately there is no simple solution, not that it matters until there are more rider convictions.
 
Although it wouldn't be bad to get rid of a lot of the bad elements in cycling imo it won't solve the issue. The issue is A) doping works so well it's almost an requirement for succes and B) in the current system there is limited risk of getting caught. You can get rid of a bunch of teammanagers and cyclist, but in the end there will be new managers and cyclist taking the risk and going for it. It only takes one team to increase the dope usage and the others will need to follow.

You can't change the impact of dope on performance, so if you want to solve the issue you should significantly increase the probability of getting caught.
 
Oct 25, 2010
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There was a time when a doping incident by a rider also had the synergistic effect of hurting the entire team, and this time was not that long ago.

And it needs to be brought back.
 
Jun 19, 2009
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Ferminal said:
With plausible deniability I doubt it would be legally possible to go after team directors when just one or two riders test positive. How do you get to the doctors, coaches and soigneurs lurking in the shadows, not necessarily on a team's payroll?

Unfortunately there is no simple solution, not that it matters until there are more rider convictions.
Well put; where are the legal grounds to pursue the management? The UCI, as ringleaders to the media circus must first come to grips with what they've created. That doesn't happen with the current regime and, until they lose media dollars will; not likely change.
The UCI could fine the collective team management for each infraction on an escalating scale until they could not race. The details of any plan starts with the UCI cooperation and they are prospering under the status quo.
 
May 29, 2012
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"...Importantly, the Operacion Puerto case involves allegations against team doctors and director sportifs and not against cyclists. One experienced participant was in
no doubt that this would be more effective than traditional measures aimed against cyclists only:

A: That Saiz needs to be locked up for a long time.

Q: Yeah, but this is, my question is, do you think that we spend a lot of time
hassling the riders but, you’re saying [names] and all these types of people. You
agree that there’s some worth in prosecuting [director sportifs and administrators]?

A: Abso-f**king-lutely. That will stop systematic doping, on its head. If Saiz goes
away for twenty years there will not be a director in the world would even f**kin’ go
near it. If he’s getting bent over the barbecue, getting f**ked every night in jail, I’ll
tell you right now, there wouldn’t be a manager in their right mind that would even
think about it.
"
(I Wish I Was Twenty One Now, p47)
 
Jul 18, 2010
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They should offer cyclists immunity if they will spill the beans on suppliers and doctors. That way they don't have to directly implicate team mates.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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henryg said:
They should offer cyclists immunity if they will spill the beans on suppliers and doctors. That way they don't have to directly implicate team mates.
Well maybe on of the up for grabs tour wins which will soon be vacant could be offered to the bean spiller?
 
Dec 30, 2010
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mastersracer said:
Looking through a list of doping cases in cycling, my impression is that there is a correlation between the probability of a rider testing positive and the identity of their team manager. There appear to be some glaring examples of clusters - Bruyneel and Riis stand out.

I don't have a dataset to play around with this, but was curious about what people thought about a policy whereby a team manager would receive a suspension when one of his riders tests positive. Perhaps 6 months for the first offense and some increasing penalties for subsequent ones. After some number, the manager is banned from the sport. Right now, the team manager has an incentive to - if not promote - at least ignore PED use. How about a scheme that actually provides disincentives to the team manager directly and shifts the burden of enforcement onto them?
+ 100 % Bingo .
 
Dec 30, 2010
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Marcus135 said:
I personally would support some sort of action do be done about this however it would have to be in a structured and well announced way. IMO managers such as Bruyneel should be banned for life. However if a system like this was to be brought in i think it would be unfair to straight out ban a manager for one doping offence in their team. As of course they may have absolutely no knowledge of the doping of that rider.

If however there is at trend (a few riders caught) then that is when the manager should start to be punished as well. So maybe 1 caught = Warning, 2 = Fine and 3 bans start coming out for increasing periods of time etc...

Because, as you said managers today can just turn a blind eye to doping in their teams then state they had no association with doping, or knowledge of doping occurring in their team. So yes i think this would be a good move, however it would have to be implemented correctly maybe nothing how i suggested :D
All good points , but it is hard to brake this old boys club because all experience to become a DS , is from being a former racer yourself , and in most cases if you were good , a former doper yourself , and thus it is easy to see why DS`s of the past turn many a blind eye ... because thats how its done . With a signed anti doping form or without , it wont make a difference .

WE just keep going around in circles here . :mad:
 
Dec 30, 2010
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peterst6906 said:
[facetious answer ahead]
I think we should extend that to society in general. When a child commits a crime, we should lock their parents away.
[/end of facetious answer]

I think Marcus has some good points, though I would extend that further.

Carrot and stick approaches to discipline also require carrots and not just sticks.

The UCI has a long way to go to support clean cycling before they can begin pushing responsibility on the DS and if they did so, there should also be some incentive offered to teams that maintain a clean sheet (eg. offering longer contracts in the World Tour so that clean teams are better placed to maintain sponsorship, etc.)
good point , but today, in north america and many other industrialized countries , when a child commits a crime the parents pay , depending on the severity of course .
We dont lock parents away , we make them pay because we want to be compensated dont we ?

So maybe we should think about making the DS pay .. mmmm that sounds promissing . All of the sudden , it hurts even more . Especially since half of the wingnuts that are DS`s dont really have much of a career other than cycling , other than i rode my brains out to win and now there isnt much left between the ears , its all i know how too do . mmmmm now what ?
I think that is pretty good start to help clean up the sport . :rolleyes:
 
May 26, 2009
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Last week i proposed a " Moratorium " and it was met with derision , yet here we have people proposing " slapping the wrists " of those they suspect as being the proponents of the current mess !

UNTIL people such as YOU DECIDE that enough is enough , and the " dead wood " in the closets is OUTED there will be a continual " Musical Chairs " scenario !

Time a line in the sand was drawn and those crossing it do so at the PERIL of their Teammates , Support Staff and Family !

LIFE TIME BANS in ALL SPORTS are long overdue as no country wants to lock up their Athletes !
 
Oct 4, 2011
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Just a few thoughts on the subject. I dont believe the managers as such should be sanctioned. Alone they may have nothing to do with it. However team sanctions are a must. The loss of a pro tour licence for 2 offending riders is a must.

The teams have a responsibility to make sure their riders are clean, so with this in mind they should be testing the riders themselves. All season and off season, if the teams monitored their riders properly they would be the first to know and in an ideal world they could make the call to drop the rider as written into the contract. It really is not that much of a hassle for the teams, they all employ doctors and the money at the top is there. If you cut out drug use at the top then usage should slow in the lower ranks.

Placing heavy sanctions like loss of tour status and heavy fines on the teams is certainly the route to go alongside heavier sanctions for a first offence. Along the lines of a 5 yr ban followed by a lifetime ban.

The system itself must change, rider attitudes certainly, but when the press comment it is always put down to the individual, which is not the whole story.
The teams must start to take responsibility for their people and make sure the sport is as clean as possible.
 
Oct 4, 2011
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skippy said:
Last week i proposed a " Moratorium " and it was met with derision , yet here we have people proposing " slapping the wrists " of those they suspect as being the proponents of the current mess !

UNTIL people such as YOU DECIDE that enough is enough , and the " dead wood " in the closets is OUTED there will be a continual " Musical Chairs " scenario !

Time a line in the sand was drawn and those crossing it do so at the PERIL of their Teammates , Support Staff and Family !

LIFE TIME BANS in ALL SPORTS are long overdue as no country wants to lock up their Athletes !
I certainly am not an advocate of lifetime bans for first time offenders. However a heavier first penalty I would agree with. For a second offence however I tend to agree.

Imagine a young rider of 20, influenced by a star to offend and he gets caught. Is it right to ban him from all sports for life. Not in my opinion. Everyone has the right to rehabilitation and to a second chance. If the first ban was lengthy(4-5yrs) the youngster would be 24-25 and a second chance would be there. If a first time offender is older than the likelihood is they have been at it for a while. But a lengthy ban means that the second chance is shorter if they bother, so while a chance is forthcoming it may not be realistic.
With a longer sentence the first time the chances of a second offence diminish, and if it is committed then a lifetime ban should ensue.
 

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