The Future of the USADA Case

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Think the USADA case is about the past, with talk of the Tour de France from a decade ago and the retired Lance Armstrong? Maybe it’s over once Johan Bruyneel, Josep Marti and Pedro Celaya complete their hearings?

Wrong. The information released by USADA is so extensive that it will cause aftershocks for months and years to come. Forget the procedural spat between the UCI and USADA and an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Instead teams and high profile riders are facing fresh questions and possibly new investigations.

It’s hard to know where to start there are so many questions. Let’s go in alphabetical order and begin with the letter A… as in Alexandr.

The image above shows payments banked by Health & Performance, a company that belong to the Ferrari family. As well as big payments from Lance Armstrong Alexandr Vinokourov and his former sidekick Andrey Kasheckin are here. Is paying money an offence? No but when Frank Schleck was caught doing the same the Luxembourg Federation launched an investigation; it went nowhere but there is a formal duty to investigate. Especially since the one document above alone details €50,000 of payments in half a year, whilst Schleck’s “training plans” only cost €7,000. If you think Vino has been caught before, that’s true but it was in 2007 and this was a separate offence. Above all, Vino is going to be manager of Astana, a position of responsibility.

Next up is Team Sky’s Sean Yates. A manager with Discovery and Astana, he said he didn’t see anything in the audio clip. “I never ever saw any indication of anything dodgy” he says he was aware of “speculation about Lance“. Yates is known for having a team bike and riding during the races so he was away from the hotel more than others. But after all the work of managers, doctors, soigneurs, riders and more detailed in all the reports it’s hard to imagine Yates labouring under the illusion that the whole team were riding on bread and water, the Truman Burbank of the caravan. But then again, what else can he say? If he were to raise doubts today he could be out of a job.

But Yates is not alone. We must remember that he was one manager at Discovery and Astana with Dirk DeMol and Alain Gallopin, both at Radioshack. Plus rider Viatcheslav Ekimov has just been promoted as manager of the Katusha team. Did all of these people see nothing? Is Ekimov named in the USADA paperwork?

Saxo Bank have problems too. Sworn testimony by Leonardo Bertagnolli is included in the USADA documentation and it names their new signing Roman Kreuziger. For now it’s just heat but it’s embarrassing and if investigations get going in Italy then – slowly – he could be in trouble. Worse for Saxo is the case of Josef “Pepe” Marti. The former employee of the US Postal team followed Contador to Astana and when the Spaniard moved to Saxo Bank, he wanted to take Marti with him but the Danish squad said no. But the two continued some collaboration, I understand this went at least to the 2011 Giro. Plus if Leipheimer gets kicked of the podium for the 2007 Tour de France after confessing to blood doping, what about his Discovery team mate Contador who won the race? In the past this speculation belonged on internet forums but now USADA’s detailed the extensive doping on the team it has brought this into the open, with Leipheimer stating Bruyneel was pressuring him into a blood doping programme for the 2007 Tour. Now, careful, this does not condemn Contador, it merely makes us ask a lot of questions in public. At best Contador should be horrified to learn what was happening inside his team.

And it goes on. You might not remember Volodymyr Bileka, once a Discovery Channel rider who went to Silence-Lotto but tested positive for EPO. He’s still going, only not so strong with the Konya – Torku Seker Spor in Turkey. But the Ukrainian has given a witness statement that goes on to name 13 riders he sees training with Michele Ferrari on Mount Teide in Tenerife in 2006:

Even if you don’t get the Italian, the NAMES stand out. Pellizotti and Gasparotto are known clients of Michele Ferrari and Filippo Pozzato got caught too. I mentioned Kreuziger above and Stefano Garzelli is set to retire. But Luis Leon Sanchez, a client of Ferrari?

If this isn’t bad enough for Rabobank, Levi Leipheimer’s affidavit also says he got EPO from a Rabobank team staff who was both the coach and overseeing an apparent doping programme. All this has put Rabobank on the spot and they’ve confirmed and investigation and team boss Harold Knebel has started to voice calls for some sort of truth and reconciliation committee, a move that at least tries to take the team forwards.

Another team with problems is Liquigas. In a statement summarised by cyclingnews.com’s Stephen Farrand Leonardo Bertagnolli paints Michele Ferrari as the Liquigas team doctor with management consenting to riders using Ferrari’s services back in 2007. Amongst all the teams Liquigas have the strongest response saying they’ve made big changes and now forbid riders from using external training services. But the past can come back to bite if more documents appear.

Finally there’s the UCI. Forget the past allegations of a cover-up from the 2001 Tour of Switzerland, looking forward the test is just how many investigations will the UCI launch or oversee. Does it want to learn from this… or bury it? Because it shouldn’t sit still when the reigning Olympic champion and new Astana team manager is caught wiring money; the same for other examples cited above. It needs to verify this rather than wish it away.

When the sport has a doping scandal it often promises change, cites new doping methods, says it is leading the way and toughs out the storm. But that’s not good enough any more. The governing body needs radical institutional change. The idea that it can view bio-passport data  from riders before passing it on to the expert panel for review and possible prosecution has to go, the data should be reviewed anonymously. Indeed the whole anti-doping operation of the UCI needs to be taken away from the governing body and placed at arm’s length just for the sake of clarity.

But the signs aren’t good. Believe France’s RMC radio and the waft of fresh bullshit is coming from Hein Verbruggen told the station (my translation):

I am happy that in the USADA report it says we never hid things under the table. It’s very important And I never said Armstrong never doped. What I said was that when Landis came along with his allegations, we’d never had a positive test for Armstrong

However in 2011 AD.nl reports a different version (my translation):

“I repeat once again: Lance Armstrong has never used doping. Never, never, never. And I say that not because I called a friend of his might, for that is not so. I say it because I’m sure.”

Note he doesn’t say a positive test but the original quote in Dutch says “Lance Armstrong heeft nooit doping gebruikt“, never used doping. If the UCI are getting tangled up here, the rest is a worry.

Conclusion
Look beyond the 20 days for the UCI to review the file and if you thought the future was the UCI vs USADA in the CAS appeal, it’s worse and much more complex. Forget Armstrong if you want, he extensive files reveal payments, training camps, methods and more that link up in a web of deceit that goes far beyond US Postal and the bad old days. Active riders, managers of many teams and others all have plenty to account for.

This is no surprise. Many teams were operating on a similar basis, perhaps not as extensively but you wonder if Manolo Saiz feels robbed when USADA described US Postal as “the most sophisticated doping program in sport”. What is unexpected with the case is that the USADA investigation reveals more than one team, in particular the investigation into Michele Ferrari has flushed out many new names.

We still need caution, those riders outed by Bertagnolli, Bileka or Leipheimer are innocent for now. But there’s enough in the files for WADA and others to consider launching new investigations and demand sworn statements from those involved. The Italian investigation behind these documents is ongoing and could bring fresh prosecutions. Ordinary fans need to be vigilant.

Given the speed of Italian justice and how long it has taken to resolve other sports-cases, we can expect this week’s revelations to go on for years.

the irrepressible fairchild October 11, 2012 at 8:37 pm

I think you mean “But that’s NOT good enough any more. “

Isaac October 11, 2012 at 8:44 pm

I think this is another nail in the coffin of the mantra that ‘cycling is now in a clean era’, and also shows at times just how ridiculous/pathetic the sport is.

The tendrils of influence that US Postal, as well as someone like Michele Ferrari seem to go right through the upper echelons of the sport. It seems that nearly every successful Protour team has someone affiliated with this scandal, and it is not really a surprise.

The most ridiculous thing is the lengths that some people are going to distance themselves from the scandal. It is pretty unbelievable that Yates is claiming not to have a clue what is going on, when everyone has seen the picture of him in Team Sky apparel with Motorman, who I doubt he encountered on a random excursion, given he had driven the team car there.

Bjarne Riis is going to have quite a headache for a while now.
First the allegations from Hamilton, now the Kreuziger story, and the potential for another Contador drama.

At least we won’t be seeing the Hog for a while

bmj October 12, 2012 at 12:36 pm

How about what Devolder said:

“I’m shocked, because I never noticed anything,” said Devolder, who was part of the American squad from 2004 to 2007, and who will join the RadioShack team in 2013. “I can hardly believe it’s true. They always insisted we had to play by the rules. The team carried clean cycling high on its flag.”

It’s one thing for Yates to play, as others have suggested, the Sgt. Schultz role, and quite another for Devolder to claim that USPS not ran a clean program, but, heck, they were the Garmin of their generation.

nate October 12, 2012 at 4:58 pm

bmj, I don’t know if Devolder was or is clean. But I wouldn’t necessarily discount his comments. After reading “From Lance to Landis” and Hamilton’s book, it sounds like a rider had to be within the inner circle of a team in order to benefit from the doping practices. Since Devolder is never mentioned in any stories (at least none that I have read), I have to think he was not part of any inner circle. That said, he could have just as easily found doping products on his own (not saying he did or didn’t).

Dodge October 14, 2012 at 11:18 am

Hi Nate, I agree, possible to be on the outer, Hamiltons books says as much, however, I believe he was being ‘developed’ as future tour rider, remember comments from Discovery management to that effect, do have a wee bit of inside knowledge from around 2005 when he won ‘ 3 days of depanne’ that he was a priority rider, Postal had lost Boonen and didnt want same thing to happen, so i’m exactly 50/50 on him knowing, question; why wouldn’t be getting assistance? Though the flipside is he may well know nothing!…Question, only US riders called in to give evidence, are we concluding that no-one else was getting assistance on the team.. at all?? really?

Derek October 11, 2012 at 8:45 pm

Re: Yates predicament. Unfortunatly, I think this is exacltly what the UCI Mgmt Committee envisioned as they passed their recent motion to look forward, not backwards. In other words, if you tell the truth we’re coming after you, so shut up.

John October 11, 2012 at 8:47 pm

It really beggars belief that Yates knew nothing. He sounds like Sgt Schulz from the old Hogan’s Heros TV show. “I see nothing, nothing…” I just rode my bike and drove the car. Come on Sean. Pull the other one.

Bryan October 11, 2012 at 8:48 pm

Another excellent summary. Until the remains of this corrupt system are flushed out of the sport I fear little will change.

How this change might happen given the past record of the UCI is the biggest worry.

mirror man October 11, 2012 at 8:52 pm

“going Postal” can take on a whole new meaning…

gadi October 11, 2012 at 8:53 pm

Great read!

Adam October 11, 2012 at 9:02 pm

Yates sounds terrible in that clip.

Matt October 11, 2012 at 9:16 pm

Yates *always* sounds terrible.

MT October 12, 2012 at 12:59 am

But seriously, that was awful.

Routier October 12, 2012 at 9:12 am

He had a stroke a few years ago presumably related to an old heart problem. I’ll leave you to make your own assumptions as to what caused the dicky ticker…

the emperor has no clothes October 11, 2012 at 9:02 pm

There are other loose ends too. Michael Barry mentions sharing an EPO with (name redacted) Mountain Biker in 2004. This also needs investigation.

David October 11, 2012 at 10:12 pm

I’m rather disappointed in Mr. Barry.

Now Le Métier can add another descriptor to pro cycling’s essence … devotion, work ethic, savoir-faire, mensonges.

The Inner Ring October 11, 2012 at 11:16 pm

“Le métier” is literally “the job” but in pro cycling it is code for doping in French.

I wondered about this title when Barry put his book out:
http://inrng.com/2010/05/le-metier-an-unfortunate-term/

Larry T. October 12, 2012 at 12:09 am

Barry can rewrite “Inside the Postal Bus” and tell us all what really happened…oh wait, Hamilton and the others already did.

Vera October 12, 2012 at 1:22 am

Oh dear. Lost in translation or a Freudian slip?

David October 12, 2012 at 4:47 pm

Thanks for that link to your book review. I was certainly not aware of the subtleties of the word métier. That would be unfortunate for him…again.

Regardless, I was trying to point out that Barry et al should add “lies” to pro cycling’s essence.

Perhaps I was trying to be too cute appropriating the french word for lying (mensonges)
;)

Domo October 11, 2012 at 9:11 pm

I think one the most worrying aspects is the relative ease of evading positive tests, according to the USADA document. In short, there is a very limited window of opportunity to catch someone after taking a banned substance. Getting caught was/is a case of bad luck. Not getting caught could as well have meant the agency simply missed the opportunity, not necessarily implying all is well and clean (as the ‘no positives’ argument goes). Apparently this has still been the case in recent times, making it an issue for the future as much as the past period.

The Inner Ring October 11, 2012 at 11:17 pm

Yes, the “we’re leading the way with new tests” call from the UCI and others is necessary but in no way sufficient. The bio passport is helping and if it was used more aggressively, with more testing, then it would work even better. It doesn’t prevent everything but it can limit it.

donzon October 11, 2012 at 9:12 pm

A clearer translation of Verbruggen’s statement would be:

I repeat once again: Lance Armstrong has never used doping. Never, never, never. And I’m not saying that because I’m supposedly a friend of his, as that’s not the case at all. I say it because I’m sure of it.

AK October 11, 2012 at 9:43 pm

As a native Dutch speaker I second this. ‘I called a friend of his might’ is not really a translation of “ik zogenaamd een vriend van hem zou zijn”. Not that it really matters, the important part of the statement (never never never) was hard to mistranslate.

Matt October 11, 2012 at 9:23 pm

No mention of Levi’s testimony of the Dr Ferrari Tenerife ‘training’ camps with Vino, LA, Kashechkin, Rogers, and Popo?

Not heard anything about Rogers before. Disappointing.

Anonymous October 11, 2012 at 9:47 pm

Rogers has been linked to Ferrari before iirc. His name also popped up in the T-mobile/Freiburg investigation,.

The Inner Ring October 11, 2012 at 11:19 pm

All these are named and like Anonymous says, several T-Mobile riders were named as Ferrari clients like Rogers and Mazzoleni.

Jonnyvelo October 11, 2012 at 9:27 pm

The silence from the teams and the riders is deafening. The deep-rooted “code of silence”, the non-cooperation with authorities, and the non-interference in the illegal actions of others remains in the sport. We need those not implicated to speak out. What have Team Sky, in particulat Dave Brailsford, Bradley Wiggins or Mark Cavendish to say about it. I pick them out because I’m a Brit, the success they have recently enjoyed and their well publicised stance on ‘cycling clean’. But it could equally be asked of other teams.

The response of the UCI is critical if cycling is to have any chance of moving forward. I suspect the real pressure will come from the sponsors just walking away. I would not want my company/brand being associated with professional cycling. Will other national broadcasters, like Germany, just stop covering the sport.

What will be the reaction of the Amaury Sport Organization be if the UCI don’t take a lead? In all professional spors it’s the economics that drives the decision making and unless something dramatic and convincing happens soon professional cycling as we currently know it will not exist – because there will be no money.

PS. Thank you USADA for seeing this through, a brave act when one of the most feted athletes is American and is central to this investigation. American values at it’s best.

The Inner Ring October 11, 2012 at 11:22 pm

Very few are talking. Some are reading the report. Some teams have banned riders from commenting on the subject in case the riders make a mess of it and generate bad publicity.

Larry T. October 12, 2012 at 12:10 am

+1

MikeB October 12, 2012 at 2:08 am

Thanks for top summary inrng. UCI have also made it clear – speak out and admit doping and we will come after you. Shut up and it will all go away. Its not surprising that teams and riders are equivocating like hell, when they don’t know what UCI will do. It could destroy teams through sponsor withdrawals and all sorts. Best to just keep your trap shut or issue anodyne comments. I am a cynic and do not expect anything to change at UCI. I am even betting that Kimmage will lose (to some degree)

Adam W October 11, 2012 at 9:34 pm

Wiggins has said he’s ‘surprised’ but the evidence is ‘overwhelming’. Plenty of talk about how the sport has moved on. Like the two riders caught this week? Ok then…

Ad October 11, 2012 at 9:48 pm

He says here he isn’t surprised:

http://www.skysports.com/video/inline/0,,16315_8158870,00.html

But then again he does seem to have forgotten who kept him off the podium in the 2009 Tour. Too much celebrating after the Olympics maybe.

But, yes, while you can sympathise to a degree with his desire to move on, as inrng says, it’s not a past issue with the likes of Bruyneel still so central to the sport.

Adam W October 11, 2012 at 10:02 pm

Should pay attention to Sky Sports News a bit more! ‘Shocked’ was the word I was looking for. This whole situation reminds me of Churchill’s words, ‘It is not the beginning of the end, but it may be the end of the beginning.’

Ad October 11, 2012 at 10:54 pm
Team Brioschi October 11, 2012 at 9:34 pm

Re: Yates.

Sky’s zero tolerance policy is standing in the way of this being a watershed moment.

Sky (and every other self-professed clean team) should clearly state a policy to their riders and employees that telling the truth about the past will not mean losing his/her job.

cd October 11, 2012 at 10:15 pm

Sky’s zero tolerance policy is clearly BS. (see Barry, Yates, Rogers, & Brailsford’s statement on USADA/LA). I have no major issue w/ what Yates, Barry & Rogers did in the past but Brailsford’s insistence that Sky is lily white is absurd.

The Inner Ring October 11, 2012 at 11:29 pm

If I can say it, zero tolerance is a phoney idea. In fact Brailsford said he’d have to soften the stance in an interview with L’Equipe:
http://inrng.com/2010/07/brailsford-softens-his-stance/

New Swiss team IAM have said they won’t hire anyone with a past conviction. But it only means they hire riders who are either clean and honest… or worse those who have got away with cheating. It is a good thing to say for the media but I’m not sure it stands up too well when you start to look into it more.

Chuffy October 12, 2012 at 12:16 am

Sky made a huge rod for their back with their ‘no dopers’ rule. They backed themselves into a corner with no room to manoeuvre. Was Brailsford just naive or did they think that they could just paint themselves white and hope that no-one would notice the dodgy associations of some of their staff? They either look stupid or deeply shifty. Had they been less gobby and more pragmatic, like Garmin, they wouldn’t be facing a PR shitstorm right now.

Doubter October 11, 2012 at 10:15 pm

Fact is, if they were winning riders, they were doping riders. Even today. The gains are smaller, but it pays to dope/tranfuse/etc.
Remember Tyler Hamilton, the guy that everyone JUST KNEW was clean? Doped.
Rogers, VdV, Zabriskie, Hincapie………all the guys everyone JUST KNEW were clean? Doped.
Museeuw, Vino, Kaschekin, Ricco, Heras, Sastre, Pantani, Schleck……….they all doped.

Same thing today. Even, or maybe especially, on team Sky.

Chuffy October 12, 2012 at 12:16 am

Oooh, you have something on Sastre? Please share.

Shabba D October 12, 2012 at 12:28 am

ya, what’s that about Sastre now?!

Doubter October 12, 2012 at 4:16 am

Sastra has been implicated in prior investigations.

Anonymous October 12, 2012 at 11:59 am

which investigations?

InTheGC October 11, 2012 at 10:24 pm

Fantastically outlined post. This truly is going to keep on having an impact for months…

kd October 11, 2012 at 10:45 pm

has there been a clean tour winning in the last 25 years?

my gut says no…

lfx October 12, 2012 at 12:49 am

I think Evans was clean. The fact he was always almost there through the doping era then got better results (in his 30s) once controls were better would seem to support this. Also, the fact he was recruited to Telecom to be the next Ullrich then went nowhere (not even on the TDF team) and didn’t get “sick” when all his teammates did is also in his favour. Also in his favour is the alliance with Aldo Sassi, and the fact that Ferrari called him “dumb” in the email trail with Armstrong. Dumb in that context seems to mean ‘unwilling to do what is necessary’. Also, he’s never ridden away from the field, always racing tight.
Sastre has no doping past, to my knowledge (correct me if i’m wrong). he won his TDF due to one attack up the Alpe with some great teamwork and an unwillingness by Evans to chase until late.
A. Schleck also has no past, apart from guilt by association (with Riis and more damningly with his brother. However if they were doping they should have been better at the TT, surely).

Anthony October 12, 2012 at 4:48 am

Evans?

Bag Pus October 11, 2012 at 10:47 pm

There is potentially a bigger story coming out of Hamiltons book but was insinuated at the time of Operacion Puerto. Very well know tennis and soccer players were allegedly on Fuentes client list. I wouldn’t be surprised if nearly all professional sports were rife with drug misuse – why does the media seem so disinterested. Doescany other sport have bio passports. Perhaps cyclings doing more than most….

The Inner Ring October 11, 2012 at 11:37 pm

Well this is a cycling blog so it’s hard to worry about other sports, I’m pressed for time already. But I was given a copy of a lot of the Puerto file a few years ago and sections are missing. Perhaps the media are not interested but not that there’s not a lot of evidence to use here.

But in the wake of the Del Moral ban, several clubs are trying to deny links to him. FC Barcelona have said he was not on the payroll… but this is not the same was saying none of the players worked with him.

Nick October 11, 2012 at 10:52 pm

Shocking comments by wiggins “I never raced against Lance Armstrong in my whole reign really….once in the criterium international…never in the tour de france”.

What?

Will the real Bradley Wiggins please stand up?!

Honestly, I am so shocked by this statement it’s got me out of lurk mode.

Great blog by the way inrng I look at it most days. Thanks.

Ad October 11, 2012 at 11:03 pm

Yes, it’s very strange that he forgot about 2009, but I don’t think we should worry about that too much. Read the longer transcript of the interview: http://skynews.skypressoffice.co.uk/newstranscripts/sky-news-111012-interview-bradley-wiggins-lance-armstrong-and-drug-taking-revelation

I think he speaks fairly well to be honest. But we shouldn’t make this all about Team Sky. At least he’s actually said something.

(By the way, I guess having a news channel run by your team sponsor means that memory malfunctions can be redacted from the record).

Nick October 11, 2012 at 11:20 pm

Thanks Ad, Yeah the transcript certainly reads better than the clip.

Obviously everyone wants brads opinion about what’s going on…. For my tuppence I think he is way too quick to say draw a line under it and move on. That’s not the attitude surely?

Interesting times…

The Inner Ring October 11, 2012 at 11:40 pm

Thanks for this. It’s clear he’s checked the results, he’s privately a student of the sport to the point where if you name a pro from the late 1990s, he can probably tell you what shoes they used. By which I mean he’s scanned a lot of news over the years. He will now get a podium place for 2009 so he can’t forget it.

Nick October 12, 2012 at 9:39 am

I am imagining how that would go….

“hey brad what shoes did late 1990s pro cyclist Marco Pantani wear?”

“errr…that’s a myth actually…Marco didn’t wear shoes….well there was one time in the dauphine….but he never wore shoes in the le tour….er that’s it”

Pepe October 13, 2012 at 6:35 pm

Who thinks that team SKY is clean after all the Armstrong case ? only the naive. The real Bradley Wiggins is a Pro since long time and He is part of all this shit as much as anybody else, that is why he is changing his statements depending on external events. He backed up Armstrong during long time, times where everybody Pro cycling knew that US postal has done industrial doping. Just trying to protect the hand that feeds him. The only question is : What is the level of doping of Wiggins ?

AK October 11, 2012 at 10:54 pm

Just saw an interview with the person in charge of sponsoring at Rabobank (the bank not the team). Of course there were the usual ‘this is the past things have improved we must move on’ mantras but what was interesting was that when pressed she wouldn’t confirm nor deny that Rabobank would pull out as sponsor. ‘We will not take rash decisions’ was more or less what she said, I asssume that means: we’ll have to see where public opinion goes.
BTW, it seemed the interviewers did not mention LL Sanchez, I suspect the weren’t aware he was implicated.

Martin W October 12, 2012 at 12:27 am

Rabobank seem to now be saying that Sanchez did work with Ferrari, but only because he was the Caisse d’Epargne team doctor, and that “Sanchez says he received no doping or doping advice”.

Note the “Sanchez says”…

https://twitter.com/RichardPlugge/status/256493335907274752

Michal October 11, 2012 at 11:09 pm

I liked comment on the cyclingtips website, something like that Lance’s domestiques are now dragging him up the Col d’Truth :)

I have also found interesting that Leipheimer’s affidavit is also signed&stumped at very bottom by Haven Parchinski, Notary Public, State of Texas. Is that former girlfriend/wife of Tyler Hamilton?

http://d3epuodzu3wuis.cloudfront.net/Leipheimer%2c+Levi%2c+Affidavit.pdf

Chuffy October 12, 2012 at 12:18 am

Yup! Comedy gold. :D

Playvelo October 12, 2012 at 5:30 am

Leipheimer’s affidavit is full of interesting bits. Lots of questions there, like who is rider 16 that had his blood extracted at the same time?

That Parchinski address is in Austin, TX. It’s only a few blocks from Mellow Johnny’s bike shop.

ElBeeJay October 12, 2012 at 9:27 am

yup. Used to bang Big Tex. Goes back to the USP days and onwards.

TheDude October 12, 2012 at 3:10 pm

Yep. Good catch. Haven is the ex-wife of Hamilton. Interesting piece in the NYT from 2004…

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/11/14/sports/othersports/14hamilton.ready.html?pagewanted=print&position=&_r=0

Bud October 13, 2012 at 2:00 am

Haven’s husband is Levi’s attorney. Or so I heard.

koko October 11, 2012 at 11:57 pm

I fear that fans like myself who have held their breath whilst the riders have descended like maniacs and gawped at them climbing mountains faster than we could believe was possible for the last 15 years will feel this too larger dent into our sports great pride to carry on watching. The fact is, is most of us knew that LA had blood doped and used EPO but the falling out of this document is going to cause, as INRNG quite rightly says, repercussions for years to come that will drag on and hang like a specter on every race and race winner.

Team Sky for a team that prides itself on presentation has really fallen at the first hurdle here with Dowsett seemingly blind drunk and in awe to his previous employers status and Sean Yates’s rolling out the same tired response of those who are sworn into the omerta. I honestly believe Brailsford and Wiggins are not involved in doping (even if I find their personalities unlikable) but everyone seemingly is tinged with past and it makes for uncomfortable reading that riders like Dowsett of this supposed new and ‘clean’ era can still hold riders like LA in such esteem.

Neither do I reserve much respect for those who came forward to testify against LA. Most were already out in the open (Hamilton, Landis) and the others (Hincapie, Leipheimer, VDV) now nearing the end of their careers have little to lose. If they had come forward in the prime of their careers then I would hold them so much more highly.

And obviously the UCI needs to just be superseded by an organisation that actually represents the fans and the future riders.

Due to all these points I wont be watching any racing next year. Ciao

Patrick October 12, 2012 at 12:29 am

On a lighter note, Kreuziger should be fuming because his results over the past few years have been Schlecky to say the least.

Richard White October 12, 2012 at 12:50 am

David Millar has made an interesting point recently that the mental anguish associated with doping, the fear of being caught essentially, is almost at the point where it negates the value of the doping protocol.

Still seems a bit of a stretch to me, but when Contador and now LA get busted, and you read some of the testimonies of riders who are concerned about the health risks they are taking as well as the danger of being caught maybe he has a point.

Tho’ I’d feel a lot happier if I felt the Spanish cycling federation were taking it seriously!

Slim Jim October 12, 2012 at 1:31 am

As an Aussie finding out Rogers was implicated in this with Ferrari is most disappointing.

More disappointing is that Matt White is DS at Orica-Greenedge.

I hope to God Evans is clean.

lfx October 12, 2012 at 1:40 am

+1. The fact that Rogers was doing wonderful things at T-Mobile up to his TDF crash while in virtual yellow in 2007, with the way that team was set up, plus the links to Ferrari, doesn’t look very positive.

Evans’ lack of success at Telekom in 03/04 would seem to be in his favour in this.

Slim Jim October 12, 2012 at 5:06 am

I remember reading a story about Telekom after the Phoenix of High-Road came along that riders who joined the team that didn’t buy into the “training ethos” were ostracised and quite quickly bumped out of the team. Evans didn’t last very long with Telekom so I’m hoping that this means he’s clean.

lfx October 12, 2012 at 1:41 am

I would love to hear Evans account of those ‘lost years’ at Telekom – they are never spoken about it seems.

patrick October 12, 2012 at 1:58 am

perhaps cadel’s long-held reputation as a wheelsucker also helps in this regard. It’s hardly the stuff of someone being doped to the eyeballs….just hanging on for dear life to those who probably were. e.g. no surprise it was Rasmussen, Contador, and Leipheimer who finally managed to shake him on Col d’Aubisque in 2007!

Roobay October 12, 2012 at 4:56 am

One thing that Cadel has to deal with is his team, BMC. Andy Riis is strongly rumoured to be the person blanked-out in Landis’ affidavit as the person who paid Landis $100,000 towards a personal doping program. Phonak (which Riis bankrolled) has also been shown to have been one of the most doped teams in the history of cycling. John Lelangue (now at BMC) was the DS of Phonak and claims to have known nothing about Landis’ doping during his tour ‘victory’ (cough cough). BMC is essentially a reconstituted Phonak – lots of the same staff, same benefactor, etc. They laid low for a few years on the US circuit and have come back with a different badge. Have Riis, Lelangue, etc really changed their stripes since then? Re Cadel this is all very circumstantial but given the current revelations they are valid questions that need to be answered and we have a right to know those answers.

Worth taking a trip down memory lane and looking at some of the Phonak alumni: Landis, Hamilton, Santi Perez, Santiago Botero, Victor Hugo Pena, Oscar Camenzind, José Gutiérrez, Axel Merckx, Hesjedal. Everyone on this list either formally banned for drug use or implicated in it (except Hesjedal who I include for interest sake only). A team rotten to the core and which exists today as BMC. Food for thought.

Slim Jim October 12, 2012 at 5:14 am

According to the Kimmage / Landis transcript Riis seemed genuinely surprised when Floyd tested positive.

His consistent – yet never dominant – performances in GTs suggests that he may be clean.

Anonymous October 12, 2012 at 6:31 pm

Ha ha ha. BMC….Jim Ochowhiz and Andy Riis….of course questions must arise….Ferrari was around during the Motorola days….the whole thing tainted or just plain DEAD. Good thing Jim Ochowhiz is the main power behind USA Cycling. A Swiss team pretending to be an American team….cough cough. Rich dudes playing with their pawns….look out youth, they will use you for a chuckle at the country club. I say CLEAN HOUSE. START OVER. RE-BOOT. These monsters have destroyed the sport….funny the Europeans placed so much value on Lance Armstrong a rider who before his main-lined chemical enhancement was just NOT a GC dude? The guy was such an asshole as a junior…he never changed. Damage goods don’t see how the UCI can allow him to continue to sponsor a u23 team? WTF?

LDR99 October 14, 2012 at 6:26 pm

Jim Ochowitz–Through all of this he has been strangely silent. Mr. Motorola and Armstrong’s friend. Instrumental in his return from cancer. Hmmmm . . .

My cynical guess is there is not a DS from the 1990s and 2000s that doesn’t have some skeletons they would like to hide.

And just curious, has anyone asked those hard hitting journos Phil Liggett, Paul Sherwin, and Bob Roll what they think of the USADA Reasoned Decision?

Sally October 12, 2012 at 1:59 pm

Re Mick Rogers, to be fair this was out and in the public domain back in 2006. Rogers answered when asked about his connection with Ferrari.

Article in today’s SMH
http://www.smh.com.au/sport/cycling/australians-named-in-lance-report-20121011-27g55.html

Robert Merkel October 12, 2012 at 1:56 am

Slim Jim,

Disappointed but hopefully not surprised.

Hopefully, one day we will also get the full truth from the other Australian riders who were active in the pro peloton in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

Slim Jim October 12, 2012 at 5:23 am

Phil Anderson is still dearly clinging to the old Guard’s ways but he’s got a reasonably lucrative Le Tour bike tours business to protect. I’m not expecting him to change.

Rogers was not the guy I’d have expected to be doping – there are other Aussie riders that I suspect but I thought him and Evans were the real deal.

lfx October 13, 2012 at 4:00 am

I was surprised to see Rupert Guinness happily throw Matt White under the bus compared to his article on Rogers. Old score perhaps?
http://www.theage.com.au/sport/cycling/australian-cyclist-named-in-drug-case-20121012-27ijm.html

Steve October 12, 2012 at 2:31 am

Thanks Inring you always come up with the goods.

Julian October 12, 2012 at 3:15 am

I’ll give you food for thought. The Vlandriens have so far evaded all of this. The rider of the year even rode with LA and there are others. Why have they not been named? There is whole other conspiracy sitting out there…..

The Inner Ring October 12, 2012 at 9:16 am

He had one year with US Postal and it was clear from the depositions and other sources that riders would join the team and only get taken in to the “doping circle” after time, riders even talk of the A-team within the 9 going to the Tour, then a second level and then a third who didn’t dope much even whilst being on the Tour team. This can perhaps explain things from that year.

Josh October 12, 2012 at 3:26 am

Pure schadenfreude, I know, but is anyone else excited at the prospect of Vino being stripped of his Olympic gold?

The Inner Ring October 12, 2012 at 9:18 am

Don’t get too excited, if any investigations are launched – don’t expect the Kazakh federation to rush this one – it would be hard to get any conviction and based on what is above, it would be for results in 2006 when he was paying money to Ferrari.

Luke October 12, 2012 at 4:24 am

Wiggins is damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t whatever he says.

What about Contador in all of this ? i presume his mouth is zipped shut , i hope the truth comes out about him and his antics but im not holding my breath.

The Inner Ring October 12, 2012 at 9:20 am

The Puerto trial is coming up and he could be called as a witness. Back to the USADA files and the UCI and others should ask him for sworn statements about his time at US Postal, Discovery and Astana

Sally October 12, 2012 at 2:01 pm

Luke, I agree. He’s in a lose-lose situation as far as some quarters are concerned. And as you say, there will be nothing from Contador, nor have I seen any push for comments from Hjesdal

Roobay October 12, 2012 at 4:35 am

“you wonder if Manolo Saiz feels robbed when USADA described US Postal as “the most sophisticated doping program in sport”. Brill

Interesting that all of the affidavits (at least those that I have read so far) were executed in the last week of September or the first week of October. Michael Barry and Emma O’Reilly only executed theirs a few days ago (8th and 9th of October respectively). All of them were executed after USADA handed down its decision on LA. I am not familiar with the applicable arbitration rules but wouldn’t these have needed to have been prepared in advance of that mooted hearing date if USADA was hoiping to adduce them as evidence in the arbitration? Have they been amended or abridged since then for some reason? Strange.

I also note that all of the affidavits contain the statement at the end which states “This affidavit is not an exhaustive summary of my testimony”. What was left on the cutting room floor?

The Inner Ring October 12, 2012 at 9:23 am

I gather some depositions were taken and then once Armstrong decided to duck the arbitration hearings USADA went back and confirmed the statements again so many are signed recently. Apparently Michael Barry came forward in the last few weeks so his statement is additional.

choke October 12, 2012 at 9:37 am

I believe that the reason for the date is that USADA was expecting those people to testify in person at the hearing so no documents would be needed. Once LA decided not to contest the charges they had to write up the affidavits.

Soab October 12, 2012 at 4:38 am

Rogers just used Ferrari for a training program. (shakes head)

Are you ******* kidding me? Has he read anything that’s been published lately? That’s what every doper has said in the past.

The whole of Sky must be in doub now. Today has been awful for them. Same excuses as USPS. Same incremental gains as USPS. Same crap.

The Inner Ring October 12, 2012 at 9:28 am

He deserves the benefit of doubt but many will be cynical. He could fix this with some clarity:
– how much did he pay to Ferrari
– issue a sworn statement similar to the rider depositions given to USADA.

The same is true for L-L Sanchez who, since I wrote the piece above, has now said Ferrari was coaching the Caisse d’Epargne team and he only got training advice. Again will he explain any money and given a sworn statement?

This now turns up the heat on Movistar’s managers if they hired Ferrari.

Phil October 15, 2012 at 5:01 pm

L-L-Sanchez is also implicated in Puerto. I suppose he was just getting training advice from Fuentes too?? Just happens to be trained by the biggest drugs advisors around at the time. All seems a bit suspect to me.

Sally October 12, 2012 at 2:03 pm

hang on, how do you make out that the ‘whole of Sky’ must be in doubt? if you want to make that claim, then it looks like you’ll have to apply it to most of the pro teams

Soab October 12, 2012 at 2:17 pm

@Sally – I meant the mission of Sky as a perfectly clean team, not accusing all the members specifically. Just the way its built and presented. Also mostly Brailsford statements about not having any idea re: Barry. Until all this, I was willing to believe that the team had no current or ex-dopers (Barry was questionable but I could convince myself that he wasn’t good enough at USPS to warrant the doping program). In Garmin’s defense, no one ever said they the team didn’t have a history. JV’s been pretty clear about that.

Sally October 12, 2012 at 2:35 pm

Owen Slot writes a fair and balanced (I think) article on this in today’s Times. Sky set out with laudable ambitions to let no rider in the door with a doping past. To be fair to Brailsford, no sanctioned rider was hired – this is why he couldnt have David Millar join though personally he really wanted him on board (I know, I know, the irony). The problem is that with cycling’s history and problems, you’re never more than 1-2 degrees of separation from a connection to doping – and that’s going to be the case for at least another 1 generation, maybe 2. And in this, Brailsford was guilty of naievity – or maybe it was the condition laid down by the Sky board, who knows? I would imagine that dealing with the Sky board vs dealing with Doug Ellis at Slipstream, in starting up a team, is a very very different proposition,

Jii October 12, 2012 at 6:19 am

An exercise in circumstantial evidence and implications:

Popo was hired as a mountain super domestique to support Cadel at Lotto and was absolutely rubbish, getting dropped early in most mountain days. The following year at Astana he was ‘Back to his best’. Implication; Lotto lacked a doping program to ‘prepare’ Popo to his ‘normal’ level.

Rogers has never reproduced his form of Telekom. Until this year at Sky when he was ‘The Rogers of old’. Implication; is that Rogers or Sky doped this year.

Krueziger has never reproduced his form from his breakout year of 2006 when Liquigas was still working with Ferrari, and has been considered a disappointment since. Implication; Krueziger was doped in his first year and has never been able to get back to that level without Ferrari.

Cadel is the only face in a lot of years not implicated in doping despite competing against and besting doped riders. Perhaps because he is a genetic anolmaly. Like everyone claimed Lance was. Implication; Cadel is doping.

Wait but what about the Popo fail that circumstantially proves his innocence. Wait, oh bugger what a mess.

MikeB October 12, 2012 at 6:54 am

After a lot of faffing abaht with Wordle, I’ve word clouded the Reasoned Decision
1st link is with Armstrong; second link without . After taking Armstrong’s name out of the mix – its clear that USADA used Dr Ferrari to bury him – “Dr Ferrari” and “Mr Blood” appears on the one without Armstrongs name. Appropriate I thought. Follow the money as you say. (Seems like blood (Ferrari and Fuentes) and money is going to lead straight down the rabbit hole..)

http://www.wordle.net/show/wrdl/5851303/RDLA
http://www.wordle.net/show/wrdl/5851323/RDLA

Luke October 12, 2012 at 7:22 am

@Soab , ‘The whole of Sky must be in doubt now’

Because Rodgers used Ferrari years before Sky existed , GET A GRIP you hysterical fanny !

Nick October 12, 2012 at 10:03 am

It’s not just that though is it? The implication is that the last time Rodgers was any good, he was on the sauce. That’s new information.

Also many other doubts about sky as raised by Kimmage much to his personal cost such as:

1. The hiring of doping Dr Leinders still not being properly explained months after the story got out.
2. Sky’s turnabout in its transparency statement on so many levels.
3. Brad throwing down the ban hammer on Kimmage going on tour.
4. Unanswered allegations about Barry from 2010 that have now been proven correct.

And lots more.

Salsiccia October 12, 2012 at 10:36 am

From a different angle:
1. Brailsford naively didn’t link Leinders to anything ropy, and has since let him go
2. I’m not sure what they have been doing differently
3. Perhaps Brad thought having PK embedded would be distracting and detrimental, especially as PK was pretty toxic at the time to most of everybody else
4. Brailsford: “Have you ever doped”, Barry: “Never, I swear”, Brailsford: “OK, and I can’t prove any different”

I’m not saying any of your points aren’t valid or that my possible explanations are correct, but a lot of possibly innocent or insignificant issues are being seized on as dodgy. I’m worried that we might be descending (further) into hysteria about the current scene when things are actually looking better than for 20 years.

Sally October 12, 2012 at 2:07 pm

Rogers since 07:

2008
2nd Overall Tour of Missouri
2nd Overall Sachsen Tour
3rd Overall Eneco tour of Benelux
5th Olympic Road Race
2009
1st National Time Trial Champion
3rd Overall Tour of California
6th Overall Tour Down Under
7th Overall Giro d’Italia
1st Stage 1 TTT
8th Overall Vuelta al País Vasco
2010
1st Overall Tour of California
1st Overall Vuelta a Andalucía
2nd Overall Critérium International
3rd Montepaschi Strade Bianche
3rd Overall Tour de Romandie

Tell you what, if that comes under the heading of Rogers not being any good, than I despair…

Nick October 12, 2012 at 4:04 pm

@Sally – fair comment. He has had achievements ever since he (is alleged to have?) worked with Ferrari.

@Salsiccia – really Leinders is the best example of what I meant in comment 2, where they apparently said they were only going to hire clean guys from the UK who had no involvement with cycling etc but then went an d hired someone from Rabobank. It’s that as an example of a culture shift. Also, and I’m probably getting hysterical, but when Brad used to speak out about dopers and said they should be chucked out he was a lot more convincing (to me!) than when he later said Lance was great for cycling, that people who asked questions were c*nts and, hours after the USADA report was published, he was in front of a camera saying that cycling should move on… when “cycling” hasn’t even properly chewed the USADA report, far less digested it and done a ruddy great poo.

Just opinions like, sorry for not remembering Rogers’s palmares correctly.

Callum Dwyer October 12, 2012 at 10:05 am

When will the names that are blank out in the affidavits will relieve?

Richard Speaking October 12, 2012 at 10:15 am

EVANS clean….

Well he doesn’t race for long periods then wins races Romandie, Tirreno, The Tour (last year?), and lives just over the Italian border in Switzerland.

Some riders have been having a “quiet” year, waiting out the storm.

Salsiccia October 12, 2012 at 10:38 am

Oh, come on. This is getting ridiculous now.

jason October 12, 2012 at 10:24 am

I hope that this is not only prove a case against LA.. there are so many people involved and I hope that many of them get somekind of ban or else the whole case and investigation has been in vain..

There are a lot of questions..
who are the blackout names?
will other national antidoping agencies use the investigaiton?
As US postal had a doping programme from 1998 to 2007, did AC win his 1st TDF on such a proramme?
will the UCI ban others besides armstrong?
why most riders claim that they have not worked with Ferrari since 2006?

It seems peculiar to me (to say the least) that the protagonists of these stories are still protagonists in their teams (either as riders or management) and claim that cylcing is much cleaner now!!

Richard White October 12, 2012 at 10:46 am

USADA have been very successful in using a “follow the money” approach – suspect that approach wil lpay dividends elsewhere. Probably needs cooperation from police authorities to force release of financial transaction info but with a bit of luck that will be forthcoming.

Robert Merkel October 12, 2012 at 12:58 pm

Yep.

The other thing to come out of this is that riders willing to dope are a dime a dozen, but doctors with the combination of expertise, skills, and amorality to design doping programs sophisticated enough to beat the testers are considerably less common.

So if you want to stop doping, go after the doctors.

mz October 12, 2012 at 12:09 pm

Perhaps I am the only one here who is not all too upset and rather pleased about this report being released and the turmoil it is creating. I think of cycling races as the tip of my interest iceberg. I am also interested in riders’ personalities, the UCI, doping practices, etc. Maybe bicycle racing should repackage itself as a reality show with the associated drama we have grown to enjoy from those shows. I can even envision a panel of judges arguing who doped and who didn’t. Both ways riders can make money but we wouldn’t have to take them so seriously.

Dontcoast October 12, 2012 at 12:43 pm

Love it!

Alan Tullett October 18, 2012 at 11:04 pm

Cycling as WWF!

After all no-one has ever taken wrestling seriously and I used to watch in the 60s in the UK.

As far as I’m aware most people who watch cycling are pensioners or other people with some time on their hands who mainly enjoy seeing the landscape. Something the TdF coverage is particularly good at doing.

Ad October 12, 2012 at 12:35 pm

Van Den Broeck: “Regarding training and commitment, he’s still a role model to me. The way in which he prepared for the Tour was impressive,”

http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/van-den-broeck-and-devolder-didnt-notice-anything-at-us-postal

Oh dear. He certainly ‘prepared’ well, Jurgen.

Karl October 12, 2012 at 12:58 pm

It’s like some of these pro’s have never heard of PR.

I feel like I am watching a car crash in slow motion with all of this.

Callum Dwyer October 12, 2012 at 1:23 pm

Yes it’s bit like that. Riders see try to put a bet each way with there statements. Kind wish reporters wouldn’t ask riders what think about Armstrong.

Sally October 12, 2012 at 2:10 pm

Never going to happen. The media are like lemmings on acid and will go after every single pro rider for comment – and if it makes a story because it doesnt fit the narrative of Lance-is-the-anti-Christ, well, hell, it will sell more, wont it…

Lord Byron October 12, 2012 at 2:45 pm

I am glad Armstrong and the others have now been caught. It was obvious for so long that it became a running joke in cycling well before the great comeback Tour and even before the on-screen bullying.
The main thing now is the next steps. We could see a large majority of the pro peloton come out with bans from their links to ‘shumi’, blood doping etc.
Pro-tour teams may have a real issue finding a team to ride a full calender year if the USADA work goes its full course. But this is very unlikely as past evidence tells us yet another cycling scandal means yet another cycling cover-up.
Cover-ups come about because cycling is committed to reform. It cannot change because the 90s and 2000s made dopers out of large numbers of pro cyclists. Any big meaningful change would require many of these people to be completely removed from the sport – managing, commentating, writing, event organising, etc. The idea of reform in cycling is finished, there are to many people who have been tarnished or implicated in doping for the sport to actually continue the way it does. There is no trust between rider and fan any more. There is no performance from a rider that you can actually sit back and say ‘he won and he was clean’ with 100% certainty. There is always a nagging doubt in the back of your head, even though you really want to believe it. You have been ripped off to many times before – Vino, Contador, Rasmussen, Rumsas, Valvearde, Basso, Heras, Virenque etc etc.
Too many commentators got sucked into the myths, too many press and media people, advertisers, tour and event sponsors. No one had the guts or convictions to go with the obvious evidence in some respects given to us by Bassons, Simeoni, Lemond, O’Reilly etc.
Now we are left with ex-dopers managing, commentating and writing about the sport. Some sort of damascene conversion has moved us to clean cycling. But its not; the same culprits are still there. The ‘clean’ team aka Sky is very much tarnished now with the new implications – Yates, Leinders, Rogers, possibly Julich now and who knows who else.
The next step though must be to do the post mortem and root and branch revolution correct. Not like the aftermath to Festina or Puerto etc where a few minor changes happened but the sweeping under the carpet approach was all that was done. To implement this revolution we fall back to the authorities; the UCI. There is no trust here either so the probable outcome to the great work of USADA will be nothing; some bans, some severe others not so, a pointless Truth and Reconcilliation committee which looks a dead cert for the UCI and others to gain some credibility but without any real change that can generate some small amount of trust.
Overall pro cycling is dead, it was on life support since Gewiss in 1993 but from the 10th October it is finally dead. I see no organisation, individual or cycling body willing to or have the means to sort out the whole mess. It went on for to long with too many vested interests willing to ignore it.
I could go on for a lot longer with a plan and process on real steps at reform but I believe USADA did a great job to produce this work. Its what happens next that I have the biggest reservations on and where I see the real issues.

jason October 12, 2012 at 3:36 pm

rightly said!!

Nick October 13, 2012 at 12:47 am

You said it lord byyron!

Rooie October 12, 2012 at 3:02 pm

@Callum Dwyer

1 Paolo Savoldelli
2 Manuel Beltran
3 Adriano Baffi
4 Bobby Julich
5 Jose Luis Rubiera
6 Pavel Padrnos
7 Roberto Heras
8 Victor Hugo Pena
9 Matthew White
10 Jose Azevedo
11 Vyatcheslav Ekimov
12 Benjamin Noval
13 Chann McRae
14 Michael Rasmussen
15 Chris Horner
16 Yaroslav Popovych
17 Marty Jemison?
18 Dylan Casey
19 Steffen Kjaergaard
20 Benoit Joachim
21 Tony Cruz
22 =EPO song

See at http://www.2cycle.be/forum/showthread.php?s=85c63540d58be5ea657daf4912d466e3&threadid=6956&perpage=20&pagenumber=112

Bob October 12, 2012 at 5:34 pm

Has anybody seen a list of the “Other” persons whose names have been redacted?

Don October 12, 2012 at 3:21 pm

Where is Chris Charmichel’s name in all this? You would think Lance’s personal trainer would be defending him if he believed him to be innocent. Of course if you built your entire business on the results of a cheat then silence is golden.

Sally October 12, 2012 at 5:14 pm

The word is that he was a beard – presented as Armstrong’s trainer whereas in fact it was Ferrari. In The Secret Race, there’s quite a thing made of the fact that Armstrong never spoke about him, it was always ‘Michele says do this’ or ‘Michele says do that’

The Inner Ring October 12, 2012 at 5:22 pm

Exactly. This was all known a long time ago. It was an odd situation, journalists would go to training camps and Carmichael would answer training questions… when it seems he had little knowledge of what was actually going on. A good coach would be dialling USADA if he saw Armstrong’s numbers reach 6.8W/kg

Sally October 12, 2012 at 5:37 pm

Made a nice living out of being Armstrong’s non-coach though…!

ctl October 12, 2012 at 3:41 pm

Great article, please keep shining the light to help break the omerta.

Hein “we never hid things” Verbruggen won’t be so smug if he ever gets to the correspondence between UCI and USADA in Appendix D (I won’t hold my breath). It reads like a black comedy. Well worth a read of 2012-07-26 WB to McQuaid which lays out the UCI’s conflict of interest and lists the allegations of corruption that should be investigated. USADA requests over a page of relevant documentation it would like from the UCI to assist in its investigation. Pat McQuaid’s response? “UCI denies USADA any authority to act or proceed on the basis of ADR or any other rule of the UCI or otherwise on behalf of UCI and/or USA Cycling”
2012-08-03 McQuaid to WB.

Can the Hein and Pat really weather this one out? As they haven’t resigned yet they must be fairly confident they can.

skibumNM October 12, 2012 at 7:11 pm

A thorough analysis as usual. Two questions I have not seen addressed: what happens to Vaughters? He has confessed but now runs one of the cleanest teams in the sport, if we can believe what we read. Will he be suspended? And, what happens to the Radio Shack team? If I remember correctly, Radio Shack originally had a two year contract as title sponsor. After the disastrous season last year, and the fact that the Shack is losing money and has changed management, coupled with the new revelations about Bruyneel and others, will they be back – and if not, can the team find another sponsor?

Sally October 12, 2012 at 7:21 pm

According to Vaughters when asked this on Twitter…no supension. Outside Statute of Limitations.

Re RSNT…looks shaky, doesnt it. Just been announced that Bruyneel’s stepping down ‘to focus on my defence’ (WTF?). Becca’s been losing money, facing embezzlement and financial legal problems in Lux…

Sally October 12, 2012 at 7:23 pm

..and going to take a brave new sponsor to enter cycling right now. Or worryingly, a very dodgy one.

graham October 12, 2012 at 8:13 pm

will all the riders on”bread and water”please step forward lets have some ying to all the yang
…..and give them the recognition the deserve…….if its possible

Håvard October 12, 2012 at 11:01 pm

It might be a bit off topic , though regarding who really won the Tours in question, isn’t there any way to organize a vote among the participating cyclists to who is the worthy winner? It can’t be that hard to realize, and reading those affidavits it seems to me the riders knew better than any who rode clean and who didn’t.

Of course this could instigate some strategic voting (gregari voting for their team leader, friends etc.), though given that these athletes are mostly retired and part of a sport largely made up of independent-thinking individuals, it could be a good way to settle this as fairly as possible and on a positive note

Ben Z October 13, 2012 at 10:10 am

I notice a lot of people are saying that cycling can’t change because the same characters are still involved, but the feeling I got from the affidavits I read (Hincapie, Leipheimer, Zabriskie, Hamilton, Vaughters, Barry) was that sure these guys might be in the sport now, but they are not doping now. Many expressed intense disgust towards the memories of their previous doping. It was obvious that while we do not have an entirely clean, there is a large portion that has moved out of the dark ages.

As for the people who are saying Sky is rooted. Well not really. Yates may never have known. Yep it sounds stupid, but he may have had his suspicions. What is he going to say?
“Well the whole time I suspected they were doping, but I guess they never trusted me enough to bring me into the circle, so no I technically never knew, I just thought they liked coffee a lot.”

Also a link with Ferrari or having attended a camp with Ferrari links a rider to doping, but it is shown in the affidavits that there were riders who attended Ferrari training camps who were not using EPO.

It would also appear that Armstrong was paying so much money to Ferrari to engage his services for the WHOLE team. Then if each individual wanted more than the team package they had to pay 15,000 each.

veloist October 13, 2012 at 11:32 am

Freudian slip by Yates at 2.11 in the audio?
“I thought we were just a well drug.. well drilled team”

Prospero October 13, 2012 at 6:13 pm

I think, and frankly hope, that this is the hydrogen bomb of cycling doping scandals. I predict that sponsors (especially non cycling related companies) will dry up completely and kill the ProTour as it now exists. This is the opportunity for pro cycling to start over, without the old UCI, and maybe with JV’s alternative league. The teams will find solace in the possibility of steady income from albeit smaller television revenues instead of the struggle to find sponsors year to year. Then a new governing body will be tasked with regulating cycling without the conflict of interest of trying to promote it at the same time.

Naaah . . . that’s too much to ask.

Anon October 14, 2012 at 2:35 am

The real cleansing, call it purging and rebirth will happen if IOC strips the UCI of its official cycling representative body status. IOC should by all accounts do just that as UCI is now putting IOC in disrepute, by association.

UCI should cease to exist, and a new governing body should be set up well away from Switzerland to limit the number of UCI rehires/existing staffers (NOBODY at UCI noticed anything wrong, ever?) joining the new organization.

LDR99 October 14, 2012 at 6:40 pm

We can only wish.

Alan Tullett October 18, 2012 at 11:30 pm

It’s funny how all these organizations are located in Switzerland, FIFA, UCI, IOC. Maybe there should be a rule that no sporting organisation can be located there. After al,l is there any country so dedicated to ‘omerta’.

fjorthur October 14, 2012 at 10:07 am

In stepping back a bit, allow me these words.

These are rather serious charges. Therefore it is a cornerstone in a democracy to allow LA and JB to have their say, as this is not as trivial as a jaywalking charge. What they know, and how they explain it, may lend more information to the event than if we drown them out and shut them up or refuse to believe anything they say because we choose to have a tidy ending to this mess.

One may dislike them, one may be diffident, but one cannot feel that way about their right to redress a grievance, because it represents our right to do so as well.

If they are determined to be defensive,or muddle through it, or pretend all is well, or tell their story, or single out bigger fish in a plea deal, or prove us otherwise, that is their right.

I think the way they are approaching this challenge is haggard and I think they are involved to some degree in this enterprise, but they probably feel hounded in many directions and, as a matter of survival, they clam up. Anyone with formal charges should be given pause to reflect upon the allegations and upon themselves.

I do believe people should allow them more latitude to think it through then others outside the investigative team feel the latitude to force a judgement upon them, regardless of whether they are guilty or not guilty or given nullification. I am not saying I agree with them, but I am not them, but they are as us under the law.

Remember, it was not that long ago that many people immediately crucified Landis and, on some level, rightly so. But he was not taken seriously because he could not cogently think past his nose due to the amount of pressure applied upon him. The public eschewed him for demonstrating that weakness, yet it was one the public participated in further aggravating. I would like to think there are few left who would like to see that same mistake repeated again, especially on an extension of the same case.

Consider this not as being an apologist for indecent riders, but as no apology in defending decent rights.

AndyL October 16, 2012 at 12:47 am

Bruyneel is still waiting for arbitration so falls into the ‘innocent until proven guilty’ category.
Lance was given the chance to have his say at arbitration, but turned it down. Remember that the arbitrators would have been neutral; – Armstrong would have named one of the three, USADA another, and the two would have jointly chosen the third arbitrator. In effect Armstrong pleaded guilty.

Roobay October 15, 2012 at 5:40 am

It simply can’t stop here.

Neil Stephens has to answer some hard questions about his time riding for ONCE (as stated by Inner Ring “you wonder if Manolo Saiz feels robbed when USADA described US Postal as ‘the most sophisticated doping program in sport’”. Genius) and at Festina (also a contender for the most doped team in the history of team sports) not to mention his director duties at Caisse d’Epargne who it is now alleged were all clients of Ferrari and supported the unrepentant blood doper Val Verde through thick and thicker.

Stephens’ excuse in ’98 that he thought he was being injected by vitamins at Festina is quite simply a slap in the face. More so that the journalists of the day let him get away with this response. They should have laughed in his face and asked the question again.

Stephens strikes me as being a great bloke and I really hope that there is nothing in this. However, in light of what we now know about USPS and the peloton more generally at that time, he HAS to be re-examined on this statement and his past. Immediately. As it stands that man is not fit to be overseeing the development of young talent on Orica Green Edge until these matters are cleared up.

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