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Letters to Cyclingnews - May 29, 2002
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This week's letters page is, unsurprisingly devoted to the 'interesting' events of the past week and your take on them.
Just a quick note to pass on to Cadel. On behalf of all the weekend MTB hacks that aspire to your greatness during our winter FTF / Kinglake rides, best of luck.
Following you every step of the way on the Giro through cyclingnews. Can't wait to see you strut your stuff up Passo Pordoi! Go get 'em!
Go Cadel! #2
A bit of a repeat on a letter I sent in some time ago regarding Cadel Evans , recent form in Italy shows I'm still on track though.
A few years ago I saw a junior going around at a national MTB race here in Queensland, he was turning laps which would have won him the senior/pro race and won by somewhere close to 15 minutes. He impressed the hell out of me, the way he sat a bike, his style....everything said this kid has class.
I said then, to anyone who would listen that this kid will be Australia's first TdF winner. I was offered another beer and told to wake up to myself, after all he was a mountain bike rider, not a roadie.
Since then he's just got better and better. I was overjoyed early this year to see he had gone to the road full time and with a team which would let him full-fill his potential.
Again I say, this kid from Katherine will be our first Tour de France winner. Doesn't look such a stupid statement now does it?
Forza Tyler! Congratulations on being the third American ever to win a Giro stage. We are very proud.
Wake up Antony. Professional Cycling is not just about personal glory. It is also about getting the team sponsor up there on the podium so they get maximum exposure for the dollars they invest. This is what Robbie and Mario did well this week at the Giro. If you're like me in Australia, then you have probably followed the Giro on cyclingnews.com because there is none on TV.
The Lotto-Addeco team knows this also, and that's why they pulled him from the Giro, so you and I will be able to see him (hopefully) win a stage of Le Tour, which I will be watching on TV.
I think Robbie has the ability to finish a Grande Tour. He is definitely not scarred of the mountains as he proved a few years back when he hung around to win the last stage of Le Tour.
The guy is in the best form of his life and has finally got the team support
he deserves. By pulling out of the Giro, it shows that he has got bigger fish
to fry, why not save yourself for the Tour de France, I'm sure if Cippo was
racing the tour, he too would pull out. Hey, even Armstrong is saving himself
by not racing the Giro. Anyway, which gets more attention, finishing the Giro
or winning a stage in the tour? Think about it!
The only reason McEwen is riding the Giro is because he was obliged by the team's manager. He quit after 10 races to prepare for the TdF.
Bravo to Bob Roll for speaking the truth!! It's refreshing. Had commentators been as forthright about the drug problem years ago, perhaps the situation would not be so extreme today.
Bob Roll's comments #2
Bob may have put things rather harsher than me, but I couldn't agree more with the theme of his comments. Chris Boardman was alongside David Duffield during the commentary on the Fleche Wallone race and very succinctly put Pantani (and Duffield) firmly in place - Duffield for his on-going ambivalence to the cycling cheats. Chris said " I don't know how he has the cheek to even be in the peloton," let alone make nasty comments about other riders and teams! The time arrived three years ago for everyone to say it has got to stop and penalties for those detected must reflect the determination of our sport to clean up - or we will lose the big sponsors! A six month ban during the "close" season is a joke! If it means races must be shorter (and possibly slower) so be it.
Why are so many people saying they are becoming disillusioned with cycling as a result of the doping. The people who should really be concerned are the riders and teams. Why don't the spectators just enjoy watching, what difference does it make to them? The spectators are not having to race against doped athletes. At the end of the day, spectators want to see exciting racing, watch the spectacle of hundreds of cyclists flying down the road. If I put two races side by side, one completely clean, the other with a few doped riders, for the spectator there is no difference in enjoyment. Don't take a couple of recent incidents with top riders out of context. Riders are still racing, you can still watch. Stop moaning about the doping problem, let the authorities deal with that and enjoy watching cycling again.
Generally it passes through a body system within 10 hours, hence the time results from a non-negative, to a "clean" test result.
The two dope test samples are taken at the same time, and labelled with codes to identify each sample, one "A" one "B."
Put the decisions in the hands of the riders? You mean like the rider who buys ampoules from somebody he's never seen for a huge amount of money only to have it revealed later that they contain salt water? Or the rider, great as he was, who 'assisted' himself so much that he died in a mountain stage? Or the riders whose haemocrit levels were so high that their blood was described by doctors as 'like sludge'? Or the riders who froze new recruits out of their teams because they refused to take drugs?
The decisions used to be in the hands of the riders - that's why we got into the appalling state which the national and international authorities are trying to drag our sport out of. OK - maybe the pendulum has swung a bit too far with last year's Giro raid, but giving the control back to the riders would be like putting the foxes in charge of the henhouse.
It's May so we must be talking about doping at the Giro
I have to start by saying I'm just a fan. I like following the races and I enjoy riding my bike. That said, the drug controversy at the Giro just kills me. Garzelli's problems especially. I can think of three scenarios, all of which suck. I'm sure there are more. I don't know enough about pro cycling to be comprehensive.
1) He doped. That was too bad, I really enjoyed watching him ride and I want to believe it was talent plus hard work and sacrifice.
2) He was sabotaged. That would be even worse. To have what he did be ruined by some jerk.
3) He was negligent. Not careful enough in what he was eating/drinking. The suck metre is heading off the scale.
For some reason, I wasn't shocked about Simoni. Maybe I'm just numb.
I do have to say that in spite of this I can still admire cyclists. To put all the work into what they do, and to put up with this. They must really love to ride. I hope it gets better.
Here we go again. Yet more doping scandals hit the cycling world. That is it. I have had it with professional cycling. No, I have had it with professional cyclists. I love the drama of a well timed attack, the majesty of the peleton and the way those boys zip up the mountains. But enough is enough. I will continue to support the bike manufacturers I like but as for the cyclists, forget it. No jerseys, no items endorsed by any cyclist, NOTHING. When Gibi won the Giro last year, I researched the steed and ultimately purchased a Fondriest. I know the bike got to the finish line without substance assistance. I can't be sure of the rider anymore. Cyclingnews needs a new page--riders disqualified in each race and or what substance. For you professional cyclist that have skills most of us riders dream of--you are pathetic.
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