Any Non-Dopers at the TdF?
Last Post 07/16/2013 05:25 PM by Dale Dale. 30 Replies.
Author Messages
ElleSeven

Posts:48

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07/14/2013 04:04 PM
OK, so anyone who crosses the finish line many seconds or minutes ahead of rivals is a doped rider. What gives away a non-doper? Not long ago, anecdotal evidence for pure sporting morality seemed to consist in things like: Nice personality, Big old dog with illness, Finishing stage races one or two positions off the podium, American citizenship, Crucifix, Back-breaking work-ethic, Thick glasses, Brand of coffee named for oneself, Erratic results, Consistent results … and so on. What about now? If we know that Froome is doping because he can drop every former doper on the hardest climbs on Earth, what clears the other guys behind him?
huckleberry

Posts:215

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07/14/2013 04:16 PM
What is your true question, or statement?
jmdirt

Posts:652

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07/14/2013 04:34 PM
I decided to take the a view that even I have criticized: clean until proven dirty. Yep, head in the sand, didn't I learn anything from the 2000s, etc, etc, etc. Its either that or not watching/reading cycling at all. CF looks like an opilionid humping a bike when he rides but he gets the job done.

I still want to know how much slower a clean rider is than a doped rider though. Or how much improvement a good dope program is worth (10%? 20%). I'm going to be in Missoula in a few weeks maybe I'll bump into Tyler H. and see what his answer is to that Q.
ElleSeven

Posts:48

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07/14/2013 04:35 PM
If I were to convert that into a statement, I suppose it would be something like: We used to get this very wrong (not all of us, of course), and now we can see that our presumptions of innocence were based on associations that had little or nothing to do with what was really happening. I guess I'm curious what moves us now to place riders in one category or another. Personally, I see some big pitfalls in drawing conclusions about guilt or innocence from individual performances on a given day.

But the question really is, I kid you not, Who's not doping and why do you think that?
huckleberry

Posts:215

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07/14/2013 06:32 PM
I guess I am so far past cynical, that I am assuming everyone who has access to a decent program is doing it...

Bicycle racing is a product, just like all professional sports, and the powers that be may gesticulate as much as they feel they need to appear to appease the masses, much like our government, but in the end, they sell us what profits them the most.

As Bob quoted in another thread "If it's to good to be true, it's too good to be true". I guess that's my attitude these days - sad as that is, and today's ride by CF would definitely fall into the "too good to be true" column for me.

Actually, I was quite shocked by my reaction after watching today's stage - I think I'm done with it.

I'm up in the mountains, alone, building a house - been here since the Giro, and have watched nearly every stage of both races before I start my day, and I can't imagine letting go of that lifeline, but I feel like nothing has changed since LA - foolish of me to think it might.
JS

Posts:61

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07/14/2013 07:32 PM
Here's my problem with Froome. You have a guy putting on one of the most dominating performances in the history of the Tour De France who has ZERO history as a world class cyclist until joining team SKY. Heck in 2010 he was disqualified for holding onto cars on the Mortirolo. Check this video from the 2009 Giro (7:30) Froome has to paperboy to get up the climb.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lEGpv0xn0E8
Keith Richards

Posts:694

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07/14/2013 08:06 PM
I really think you should take a closer look at the margins of victory over the years JS. Granted, doping has been part of the sport as long as this sport has been going on, but to say his time gap is out of the ordinary is just not an accurate statement.

I guess my big problem I have with the whole thing is...can you please tell me when you watched a "clean" TdF?
----- It is his word versus ours. We like our word. We like where we stand and we like our credibility."--Lance Armstrong.
Orange Crush

Posts:1146

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07/14/2013 08:31 PM
I think the OP is ill-posed, as Lemond put it (dont quote me on this), you can't get rid of all doping but you have to weed out the excesses.

Sky stands out to me in terms of the predicatability of their wins. Last time things were this predictable...
Keith Richards

Posts:694

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07/14/2013 08:55 PM
Last time things were this predictable was when? Indurain? La Vie Claire? Fignon's back to back wins? Merckx's back to back double digit time gap wins?

If you want to watch clean racing, go watch juniors.
----- It is his word versus ours. We like our word. We like where we stand and we like our credibility."--Lance Armstrong.
Ride On

Posts:415

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07/14/2013 08:57 PM
It is easier to see the outliner from the norm than the norm itself.

If you cheat to get yourself into the middle of the pack you are hard to pick out, but if you distinguish yourself as an outliner you are one of two things, someone very special or a cheat.

Sadly in today's sports , not just the TDF, it is up to you to prove you are something special and not a cheat. Innocent until proven guilty has left the station for me personally.

Do I believe Bolt is the fastest sprinter of all time, no. Do I believe Barry Bonds is the best home run hitter of all time no. Do I believe Lance is the greatest TDF rider of all time, no.
Do I believe Michael Phelps is the greatest swimmer of all time, yes. I believe he is an outliner.
Orange Crush

Posts:1146

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07/14/2013 10:03 PM
Posted By Keith Jackson on 07/14/2013 08:55 PM
Last time things were this predictable was when? Indurain? La Vie Claire? Fignon's back to back wins? Merckx's back to back double digit time gap wins?

If you want to watch clean racing, go watch juniors.

Indurain - yes. The guy who can't be named yes, La Vie Claire and Fignon, no.

I don't need clean racing. But I'd like to see a race not a procession.
Entheo

Posts:315

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07/14/2013 11:05 PM
although on another thread i said i would give froome the benefit of the doubt until something more substantial came to light, there is something that bothers me about that guy, and his performances... they just don't, for lack of a better way to put it, look natural. he reminds me of ricco & piepoli at the end of a mountain stage. and then he says this about today's stage:

“When I did catch up to him (quintana), I thought: ‘This guys is going to win the stage today and I'm going to have to settle for second'. But then, in the last two kilometres, he was fading a little and I still had a little bit left. We talked a little bit and I was just trying to say, ‘Man, come on just a little bit more... we're almost there...' but he was slipping behind.
“Near the end, I don't think that I attacked…it was just that he couldn't ride on my wheel anymore and a gap opened up.”

why would he try to encourage quintana to hang on? he didn't attack to open up the gap? he might want to watch a rerun. too much shades of armstrong/pantani, as if the whole thing is scripted... and very odd indeed.
Yo Mike

Posts:254

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07/15/2013 05:36 AM
Color me suspicious of Sky's program. +1 Entheo

I think it was HG Wells that wrote 'The Island of Dr Moreau'

Was the island in fact Tenerife?

I wonder of Froome will make a 'you have to believe' speech in Paris like he who shall not be named (HWSNBN)
jrt1045

Posts:357

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07/15/2013 08:32 AM
Tenerife is the Island of Dr Ferrari

I am glad to see that others share my cynicism
Cosmic Kid

Posts:985

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07/15/2013 10:43 AM
@ Yo Mike.....just call him "7". ;-)
Just say "NO!" to WCP!!!!
Yo Mike

Posts:254

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07/15/2013 10:55 AM
LOL, good one, certainly shorter.

Maybe ' -7 ' is more correct, tho....

I did see that 'he' tweeted a 'no gifts on Ventoux' to CF
C2K_Rider

Posts:168

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07/15/2013 12:30 PM
Posted By jeff sanford on 07/14/2013 07:32 PM
Here's my problem with Froome. You have a guy putting on one of the most dominating performances in the history of the Tour De France who has ZERO history as a world class cyclist until joining team SKY. Heck in 2010 he was disqualified for holding onto cars on the Mortirolo. Check this video from the 2009 Giro (7:30) Froome has to paperboy to get up the climb.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lEGpv0xn0E8


Freaks do happen. I remember John Naber in swimming. He didn't even start swimming until he was in high school. By his senior year he set an american record in the back stroke. Two years later he was the top medal earner at the 1976 Olympics (4 golds, 4 world records). So I won't discount Froome's performance just because he is way ahead of the others. Testing and time will tell all....
PlanB

Posts:15

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07/15/2013 04:48 PM
Where did the 'came-out-of-nowhere' idea come from in the first place? By a huge margin the preponderance of doping busts, confessions, sanctions, police investigations, testimonies, and court actions have involved riders and staff who came from the other place: somewhere.

Scratching my murky noggin I could think of only two busted riders who, before their busts, had rocketed to fame without any apparent pedigree or steady progress in racing. These were Rumšas and Thomas Dekker. Obviously there must be others who have simply slipped my mind. But even the usual suspects who crop up on such lists, like Riccò for instance, tend to have had very rich amateur palmarès that the mass audience don't know much about.
Orange Crush

Posts:1146

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07/15/2013 04:57 PM
Ehhrr, Thomas Dekker had a "pretty good" U23 palmares I would say :-)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Dekker_(cyclist) Hardly someone who came out of nowhere. In fact that was the problem. When he subsequently couldn't live up to expectations in the pro ranks, that's when trouble began.
PlanB

Posts:15

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07/15/2013 05:05 PM
Yeah, you're right, Dekker was the real deal before turning pro. In his case, he was seemingly tipped as the next Classics and Time-Trial Elvis before he'd so much as strapped on his blue suede cycling shoes. But you see my point (I hope). We've been applying this hypothesis, which admittedly sounds kind of logical, without much precedent to back it up.
Keith Richards

Posts:694

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07/15/2013 05:41 PM
Froome was 11th in the white jersey in his first TdF which is a much better result than Armstrong in his first crack at the big show.

Out of nowhere is a stretch and I am putting that nicely.
----- It is his word versus ours. We like our word. We like where we stand and we like our credibility."--Lance Armstrong.
jrt1045

Posts:357

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07/16/2013 08:29 AM
11th place in the white jersey contest is like 4th place in the sub-Saharan world champs. 84th overall and over an hour down
jmdirt

Posts:652

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07/16/2013 10:28 AM
jrt, the world champs are the world champs no matter where they are held. While everyone is trying to win or at least get a medal, nobody would be too upset with 4th at worlds. CF would be the 'home' favorite for an African worlds.

84th in his first TdF is pretty good for an African raised mountain biker who got a late start in 'proper' cycling.
jrt1045

Posts:357

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07/16/2013 11:44 AM
sounds like the intro to the Floyd Landis Story, no?
jmdirt

Posts:652

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07/16/2013 03:45 PM
Similar! ;}

I met FL when he was racing dirt for TRP in the mid 90's. He was riding wheelies around the team van (about 20 times, mostly one handed) and one of the Retro Tech guys introduced us. He was an amazing bike handler with a strong engine. I think that he was a guy who had the genetic potential to win in a clean racing environment. Unfortunately, when he was in Rome, he did as the Romans.

Disclaimer: I know that everybody has a "I knew a genetic freak..." story. Do you want to hear my Greg Randolph story too (truly a genetic freak).
Red Tornado

Posts:31

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07/16/2013 04:13 PM
For a lot of these guys, time will tell. Just like how riders from the 90's/early 2000's are now being found out. Truth is we just don't know if CF is juiced or not; only he knows for sure. Yes a guy riding practically everyone off his wheel, at will, does look suspicious to me; given the likes of other guys throughout history who have been able to do that. Yes, this conjures up memories of Ricco & Co. from a few years ago. Not much anyone can do though until he's found guilty - it's just speculation until that happens; if it happens.
I'm with OC. It would be nice to see an actual RACE for 1st and not a processional around France. It's nice to watch places 2 - 10 duking it out, but not quite as nice as it could be. Yes it's pretty far-fetched to wish for a GC classification that comes down to mere seconds on the last day, but a true battle for at least the first half or 2/3 would be refreshing and very entertaining.
My $0.02
PlanB

Posts:15

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07/16/2013 04:19 PM
To me it sounds like the intro to the Cadel Evans story.
jrt1045

Posts:357

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07/16/2013 04:28 PM
Greg Randolph certainly got the poopy end of the stick. Extremely talented and had the misfortune(?) to win a slot on the 1996 Olympic, he got a lot of crap for how all that went down back in the day. Definitely affected his career in a bad way IMHO. In retrospect, he was probably the only legit member of the team. If you look back at the start list of the 1996 Olympic RR it is like a who's who of the EPO era

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cycling_at_the_1996_Summer_Olympics_%E2%80%93_Men's_road_race
jmdirt

Posts:652

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07/16/2013 04:37 PM
CE had more success than either FL or CF on the dirt before hopping to the road (he won the world cup at least twice that I can remember plus multi worlds medals as a jr and U23). EDIT: I knew GR when he was a new cat IV and within months a top cat I. Huge genetic freak. I don't want to put words in his mouth but my take is that he got away from road racing because it was too 'hot' for him. He had the motor to do well on the dirt but he didn't get the handling figured out.
jrt1045

Posts:357

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07/16/2013 04:58 PM
Och broke him, wonder how he's escaped the laser? He (Och) was Hein's stock broker too, right?
Dale

Posts:439

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07/16/2013 05:25 PM
Posted By j t on 07/16/2013 04:58 PM
He (Och) was Hein's stock broker too, right?


Correct... http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/more/news/20130117/lance-armstrong-hein-verbruggen.ap/


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