What is the best plan for the pro peloton going forward?

Jul 10, 2012
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So, there are more than a few points of view on what the best plan for the pro peloton is going forward.

There is the Sky plan, which involves tossing out of the sport anyone who has had doping in their past. This is somewhat logical because anyone with enough funding in their doping program can beat the tests, so testing will not screen out cheaters (except for the dumb and poorly funded ones). In other words, testing doesn't make the sport credible, the only thing we have to go on is everyone's word.

On the other hand, it is kinda mean to kick out of the sport people whose only crime was succumbing to peer pressure. If we change peer pressure so that it goes against doping instead of for it, that should change the sport for the better. So is Sky's plan too mean?

Which brings us to the other plan, the Garmin plan, which involves keeping ex (?) cheaters in the sport as long as they go on and on about how much they hate doping now and hate cheating and its a thing of the past. This seems somewhat logical because as human beings we want to forgive and forget, and if people are able to establish the credibility that they have put cheating behind them, we want them to rebound and succeed. After all, most cheaters did so to either keep up with other cheaters because it was ingrained into the sport.

On the other hand, which ones do you keep and which ones do you turn away? Who decides? How does one establish their credibility? And does it not go far enough to fight doping, to let someone back in when they've lied to everyone? How are we supposed to trust them when they've lied before and when riders have found ways to beat the tests?

It is a very interesting time for cycling right now, because both plans are being implemented. Betamax vs. VHS, HD-DVD vs. Blu-ray. Which will prevail? Or is there a place in cycling for both plans?

Ultimately, I think that Sky's plan works so long as there isn't backlash from the fans who could see their plan as too mean. Garmin's plan works so long as people are able to trust them when they say the ex-cheaters are clean. Both can succeed and both can fall apart.

I would love it if people felt like adding their $0.02 to the conversation.
 
Mar 18, 2009
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babastooey said:
So, there are more than a few points of view on what the best plan for the pro peloton is going forward.

There is the Sky plan, which involves tossing out of the sport anyone who has had doping in their past. This is somewhat logical because anyone with enough funding in their doping program can beat the tests, so testing will not screen out cheaters (except for the dumb and poorly funded ones). In other words, testing doesn't make the sport credible, the only thing we have to go on is everyone's word.
The Sky plan is to toss out anyone who has a doping past THAT the public knows about. The part following the "that" is the most important part of the plan. Perhaps the second most important part of the plan is to toss people AFTER the team wins the big one, not before. In fact, the very people who will eventually be tossed are brought aboard to assist with the big win then tossed aside like yesterday's garbage.
 
Mar 13, 2009
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Betsy's metaphor puts it best. Cycling is watching Madoff and a big ponzi scheme.

But people want the 11% returns, and the myth, and dont ask any questions.

We see exactly the same with Sky, and we enable the status quo, even when it is staring us in the eyes.

Even Armstrong can stare into Oprahs eyes, even Basso can do the jedi mind trick on the hog. And the hog can do the mind control on the senile Liggett.

Fooled me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.

but I prefer the George Bush version.

redefine the problem. the problem is expectation. we are not watching sport, we are watching entertainment, but we want our entertainment with the ideals that were drummed into us in little league baseball and soccer. professional sport, is not sport. its entertainment, its win at any cost, its business.

doping is not the problem. the deceit and lies come from expectations. expectations that hold zero relevance to reality, that pro sport, is an evolution of recreational sport. its not. its a completely different environment. its a product. it exists as a business in a marketplace.

the truth you will not get from people in this industry. as it hurts the myth, and their business.
 
Jul 15, 2010
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Pro cycling is ----ed. They should start awarding prizes for the best ducking, weaving and appearing like a stunned mullet when asked questions about doping.

Until you get rid of all the old gaurd its a joke. There are some good people who get ----ed over when you have a full breakdown of things, but I dont think you can fix the current model - your polishing a t-rd.
 
Aug 10, 2010
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There is no best plan for the pro peloton. The pro peloton does not have a plan. It is told what to do--and it likes it.
 
Jun 18, 2009
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1. Get rid of the scum at the UCI.
2. Give WADA absolute control of antidoping.
3. Doping sanctions implemented by an international organisation, not by national federations.
4. Give all current riders an opportunity to come forward now and confess their past doping sins and take a 6 month ban. If they're found to have doped in the past and not taken this opportunity then it's an automatic 8 year ban.
5. 2 year min bans for non-blood boosting offenses. 4 years min for blood boosting (EPO, transfusions etc). Lifetime bans for doctors/managers of teams found to have systematic past or present doping programs.
 
Aug 10, 2010
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Cobber said:
1. Get rid of the scum at the UCI.
2. Give WADA absolute control of antidoping.
3. Doping sanctions implemented by an international organisation, not by national federations.
4. Give all current riders an opportunity to come forward now and confess their past doping sins and take a 6 month ban. If they're found to have doped in the past and not taken this opportunity then it's an automatic 8 year ban.
5. 2 year min bans for non-blood boosting offenses. 4 years min for blood boosting (EPO, transfusions etc). Lifetime bans for doctors/managers of teams found to have systematic past or present doping programs.
Adequately fund antidoping is the only thing I'd add.
 
Sep 8, 2012
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MarkvW said:
Adequately fund antidoping is the only thing I'd add.
Yep make the dopers pay all their prizemoney and income from the team to the doping organisations for having to catch them. That is if they come clean. Then if they dont they have to pay extra (not sure how much) ontop of that. You have to hit them where it counts and that is the wallet. How good would it of been for WADA (or similar) to even get 2 years of Contadors prizemoney plus income. Plus cause he didnt come clean maybe something like 50% of his private sponsorship dollars. Need to start being harsher on dopers. I would also say 5 year ban if they come clean for a blood doping offence and life if they dont come clean. We dont want those that are keeping the omerta and blood doping in our sport. For non blood doping offenses 2 and 5 or similar would be good.

Additionally get rid of all previous results (not just when they say they started doping) as you can not be sure when they started. Dopers should have blank palmares.

This is post a T&R type thing. You need to say come clean now or you will be severly punished.
 
MarkvW said:
Adequately fund antidoping is the only thing I'd add.
Backdated testing. Gotta fund that.

If WADA agencies can open cases and enforce penalties on those back-dated tests, CAS will have a backlog of cases. All good. There's more to do after that, but that's a good start.
 
Jul 10, 2012
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I think the consensus is that the testing has to get better. I've said over and over on this forum that the reason why so many people stuck by Lance Armstrong for so long was because they believed the testing was credible.

It is clear that the testing has to be run better (i.e. administration), in addition to being better at catching cheats. Has the testing suffered because the UCI in its role has a conflict of interest in catching cheaters? After all, if winners are popular and winners are cheaters, then removing the cheaters means the sport suffers, which is against the UCI's interest. OR, is it simply a matter of the people who run the UCI being incompetent and/or corrupt?

I think that if the race organizers themselves want clean racing, and want to advertise that their races are clean clean clean (as the TDF was doing in the year they caught Ricco when the Giro failed to do so), and cycling fans as a whole demand a cleaner sport, then advertisers should flock to the events which bill themselves as clean. In other words, demand for clean sport drives advertising, and the race organizers should follow this line of reason.

In other words, the UCI could theoretically be cut out of the equation somewhat if cycling wants to be serious about anti-doping. the UCI could fight it but I think the peer pressure could work the other way, rendering them silent.
 
Jul 10, 2012
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I think the consensus is that the testing has to get better. I've said over and over on this forum that the reason why so many people stuck by Lance Armstrong for so long was because they believed the testing was credible.

It is clear that the testing has to be run better (i.e. administration), in addition to being better at catching cheats. Has the testing suffered because the UCI in its role has a conflict of interest in catching cheaters? After all, if winners are popular and winners are cheaters, then removing the cheaters means the sport suffers, which is against the UCI's interest. OR, is it simply a matter of the people who run the UCI being incompetent and/or corrupt?

I think that if the race organizers themselves want clean racing, and want to advertise that their races are clean clean clean (as the TDF was doing in the year they caught Ricco when the Giro failed to do so), and cycling fans as a whole demand a cleaner sport, then advertisers should flock to the events which bill themselves as clean. In other words, demand for clean sport drives advertising, and the race organizers should follow this line of reason.

In other words, the UCI could theoretically be cut out of the equation somewhat if cycling wants to be serious about anti-doping. the UCI could fight it but I think the peer pressure could work the other way, rendering them silent. It could work. Race organizers and WADA can work together to bypass the UCI's incompetence or conflict of interest and make the sport better from a testing/credibility standpoint.

Ultimately, it is the riders and teams themselves who will make the sport a clean one, by choosing to cheat or not.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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The Best Plan for the Pro Peloton is to stick their heads in the proverbial sand and staple shut their mouths. Because, if they say anything or attempt to do anything that rocks any boat, they will end up with either no paycheck or a much smaller one. Sure in time it will level out again but in the short interrum its head in sand and stapled lips, crazy glue is also acceptable.
 
babastooey said:
....

Ultimately, it is the riders and teams themselves who will make the sport a clean one, by choosing to cheat or not.

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We've only been hearing it's up to the riders/DS's since Festina. You are missing the point entirely. How many different ways does the IOC benefit from doping? How many ways could Hein and Pat personally benefit?
 
Mar 31, 2010
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BroDeal said:
The Sky plan is to toss out anyone who has a doping past THAT the public knows about. The part following the "that" is the most important part of the plan. Perhaps the second most important part of the plan is to toss people AFTER the team wins the big one, not before. In fact, the very people who will eventually be tossed are brought aboard to assist with the big win then tossed aside like yesterday's garbage.
with your faulty logic, it would mean guys thrown out of sky would soon open their mouth about dopingprograms then :rolleyes:
 
Jul 10, 2012
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DirtyWorks said:
We've only been hearing it's up to the riders/DS's since Festina. You are missing the point entirely. How many different ways does the IOC benefit from doping? How many ways could Hein and Pat personally benefit?
I get that the administrators are a problem. Re-read my earlier post (not sure how it got doubled) and you will see that I wish there were a way that the UCI could just be bypassed entirely, and that it is possibly a conflict of interest for them to fight doping, not because of the corruption of any one person or persons, but because of what the purpose of the UCI is.

Anyway, what I meant by what I wrote is that ultimately, the decision to put something into ones body is that person's decision to make. Will I eat a ham sandwich tomorrow, or opt for something else? It is my decision.

I DO NOT DOUBT that for the most part what made these riders do what they did was peer pressure. Pressure from team owners, doctors, teammates, and perhaps even their own will to succeed. After all, we are for the most part talking about highly competitive people who want to do what they can to excel or at the very least compete and be a part of something they love.

THIS DOES NOT EXCUSE THE RIDERS. They choose to put these things in their bodies, and sometimes they don't even consider the consequences. The only thing missing from the Tyler Hamilton book was the admission that he did what he did without any regard to his health and safety -- and that he regretted not thinking of it on that day when he was shaking in a hotel room with a bad blood bag injected into him by God-knows-who while his golden retriever was dying in 2004. Probably the worst night of his life. These riders need to consider their health and safety, and they need to be educated on the risks from the choices THEY ARE MAKING. Do not cave to peer pressure, because they are risking life and death.

What really needs to happen is the opposite -- peer pressure which causes doping to come out into the open, instead of hidden and preserved. To this end, teams should pledge that they will hire whistleblowers while all the people who stood on the side of omerta can go lose their jobs and never come back.

Peer pressure which causes riders to think -- in a very personal way -- what they are doing to their own bodies.

Please do not go on about how I miss the point. I may not know everything about doping in the sport, but I feel I have a good grasp, and riders making their own decision as to what to put in their bodies -- that is ground zero of the fight against doping in the sport. Whether or not that fight is won will determine whether or not cleanliness wins, or the drugs win.
 
Jan 23, 2013
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Any time there is the competitive ego, lots of prize money, pressure from sponsors for riders to excel, and ways to beat the testing - there will continue to be cheating via doping.

There is cheating in the corporate world, political world, entertainment industry, and just about every other facet of life I can think of.

It seems the only way to beat doping is to make the consequences of getting caught more dreadful that the possible benefits of comitting the act. That, coupled with improved testing methods, would create a true deterrent.

I am an advocate for a lifetime ban for the first offense. If there is to be no tolerance for doping, then show no tolerance.

Or...

I am an advocate for doing away with all testing and let the riders do whatever they want with their own body chemistry. This would require the acceptance that cycling will not be part of the Olympics (the sport can survive without that quadrennial revenue stream).

Either way, the conversation would be directed back to the sport rather than the toxic subject of doping.
 

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