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Letters to Cyclingnews - November 18, 2005

Here's your chance to get more involved with Cyclingnews. Comments and criticism on current stories, races, coverage and anything cycling related are welcomed, even pictures if you wish. Letters should be brief (less than 300 words), with the sender clearly identified. They may be edited for space and clarity; please stick to one topic per letter. We will normally include your name and place of residence, but not your email address unless you specify in the message.

Each week's best letter gets our 'letter of the week'. We look for for letters that contain strong, well-presented opinions; humour; useful information or unusual levels of sheer helpfulness.

Please email your correspondence to

Recent letters

Heras - three times lucky?
What is the UCI doing?
Exciting again
Exciting again
2006 Tour de France
Positive urine EPO tests
Le Tour will live on without Armstrong
LeBlanc's Tour snub of Armstrong
LeBlanc's Tour snub of Armstrong
Tour of Southland
Schlimmer response
Exercise-induced asthma


Heras - three times lucky?

The news that Heras's B-sample is going to be independently tested by three separate labs is a stunning coup for the rider - and his team.

The results of the rhEPO urine test are determined by a Lab technician identifying the number of basic isoform present in the urine. If this figure is above 80% then the test is deemed positive - although this is itself an arbitraty cut-off; apparently figures as low as 60% would indicate doping.

Supposing that Heras's medical backup had been micro-dosing him throughout the Vuelta, then they could have kept his isoform level bouncing along just under the 80% figure for the whole race - boosting it when it fell - in a similar way they would keep his hematocrit at 49%.

One slip-up, and Heras fails the last test, despite passing all the intermediate ones. Micro-dosing does apparently have an immediate effect, rather than the 10-day lag that a large hit of EPO would.

As a comparison, the 15 stages that LA was tested for from 1999 had the following results: positive (100%), positive (89.7%), negative, positive (96.6%), positive (88.7%), negative, positive (95.2%), negative, positive (89.4%), negative, negative, negative, negative, negative, negative.

Once you understand that 79.9% is a negative test, then you have the answer to why Heras could test negative all the way through the Vuelta, then fall at the last hurdle.

Now, if any single one of the three labs declares a negative sample (79.9%), then Heras's lawyers will have a field day. He has effectively trebled his chances of being cleared in what at the end of the day is a judgement call!

Unless Heras's A-sample was way into the 90% bracket, then he stands a very good chance of being cleared - and lets face it, why would his doctors allow his figure to be well over the detection limit? LA's figures were only so high because nobody knew the samples would be tested in this way!

So fortunately, or unfortunately (depending on your point of view) Heras may come out 'clean'.

Andy Turnbull

Stirling, UK
Wednesday, November 16, 2005

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What is the UCI doing?

I don’t know if I already put this up, but word around the campfire is that the 3000m women’s steeple has also been added to the Olympic programme in addition to the 10km open water swim (I think for men and women).

As far as I can see FINA or IAAF haven’t had to drop any events to get these ones in.

I know a little about both those other two sports, and from my estimation, due to athletic timing schedules and qualifying during the Olympic period and/or specificity required for both of those events both will result in a substantial increase in the numbers of competitors for those two sports, without any reduction in other events.

From my limited knowledge of cycling, I believe that nearly all of the riders that would contest the Kilo/500 will be present at the Olympics for the sprint, keirin and Olympic sprint anyways, thus no increase/decrease in competitors.

Seems to me that the UCI, who are our representatives to the IOC have been completely outmanoeuvred and/or shafted by the IOC, FINA and IAAF. Given that the UCI is supposed to be a competent international governing body for one of the largest competitive sports with a substantial history in the Olympics - since 1896 - one would think that there should have been some major outcry, and major political lobbying and manoeuvring. Maybe those dudes just like the nice blazer that goes with the job and don’t want to do anything for it - a common enough affliction.

It wouldn’t surprise me if sometime within the next two years that some other sport, like golf or navel gazing gets a start with an extra 500 competitors each, at this rate.

What are the UCI doing?

Tony Unicomb

Thursday, November 17, 2005

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Exciting again

So Mr R Wits thinks the Tour de France with Lance Armstrong riding was boring? That means he must think every Tour de France with a former winner in it was boring. We can never assume that just because Armstrong, Lemond, Hinault, Indurain, Merckx or whoever is in a Tour that it is going to be dull.

If you want the defending champion to win, don't you get excited when the contenders attack? Come on, when Beloki was on form he was a real threat, and Ullrich was always Armstrong's Number 1 concern. And if you are rooting for the defending champ, I bet you can't rest until he’s safely in Paris.

While it's easy to say with hindsight that such and such a Tour was boring, during the actual event nothing is ever assured. Disregarding crashes or technical woes, nobody can know if a rider is as well prepared or even better prepared than the year before. That's what keeps us coming back every year. If anything, it's the other riders who do not attack that make a Tour boring. So let's have a go at them, shall we?

As for those who are certain Armstrong was doped, why make such an assumption? If you've ever raced and trained hard, you know what it is to work your guts out. But surely there were times when you didn’t want to train, or maybe in a race you knew such-and-such was racing so you knew you didn't have a chance. That's the difference between also-rans and winners. Couple a ridiculous work ethic with an unflappable belief that you will win and you have a champion. Just ask Bernard Hinault or Lance Armstrong or Sean Kelly.

Johan Museeuw once admitted he was physically nothing special; it was ‘just’ his sheer determination. And I recall that super-domestique Sean Yates was one of the most physically gifted riders of his generation (which includes Hinault, Fignon, Lemond, Roche), yet he was happy as a domestique so never won anything near what his ability probably could have gained him. He even held the record for fastest individual TT on the ‘88 Tour.

Lance was probably the most-tested rider in recent Tours and he always came back clean. He didn't need to race after cancer, and he had already had so much stuff pumped into his veins for chemo that he undoubtedly would not want any more in his system for something as comparatively frivolous as cycling.

So let's give the guy a break. Somebody has to be the best. Sure wish it was me!

Graham Springett

Wagga Wagga, Australia
Sunday, November 13, 2005

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Exciting again #2

While Mr. Wits and I agree that the 2006 Tour will be interesting and hopefully exciting, he (and people in general) must certainly have had a whole lot of faith in Lance's ability, luck and health to watch him set records every Tour without holding their breath a great deal of the time. Every Tour Lance could have lost at any point. One mistake, one illness, one flat tire at the wrong time and he wouldn't be in the record books as he now is.

Sure, 2006 isn't going to be a year where we have strong suspicions who's going to win (Oh yeah? Go Ivan!) But if history is anything by which to judge, we can expect the same sort of time gaps from the winner as we've seen for the last several years. And there is the likelihood that the "exciting" part will be police raids in the middle of the nights looking for doping evidence.

Or maybe I'm different? I did sit on the edge of my seat every year Miguel Indurain was racing and pulled with him the whole way. And the years that Greg LeMond won were special as well. Pedro Delgado was great as was Steven Roche. And Riis's, Jan's and Marco’s…

2006 is going to be a good Tour but they're ALL good Tours.

Tom Kunich

San Leandro, CA
Friday, November 11, 2005

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2006 Tour de France

So many people have narrowed this race down to a two man race. Ullrich seems to have a good chance with two long time trials, no team trial, and a start in Strasbourg can't hurt either. But I will tell you now that Ullrich will never see the form he had when he attacked L'Alpe d'Huez in 2004. Basso has improved since 2004.

He can time trial and finish the toughest climbs. Take a look at stage 11. It’s one of three tough days in the Alps. 43 km up the Galibier with an 18 km finish at La Toussuire. Bye-bye Jan. I hope you can hold onto second place.

Landis can do much better in 2006. He was really too tired from peaking in May for Georgia. Basso was in the same boat from the Giro. Valverde has such great potential. If he was French, he would be their biggest hero. As for Discovery, I hope they take this race by storm. Skip the GC and just tear this race apart daily, with Ekimov possibly returning for one last hurrah. I hope LeBlanc's disrespectful attitude towards Armstrong motivates Discovery to win a few stages, Lance-style.

Timothy Shame,

Thursday, November 3, 2005

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Positive urine EPO tests

Serologic tests are ALL associated with false positives. With the increased number of positive tests and implications for individuals, teams, sponsors, and indeed the crediting bodies, this process needs to be reviewed in a public forum. Those that develop and perform these tests need to tell how a test is performed and explain the false positive/false negative rates and also the sensitivity/specificity rates. Recently a world class triathlete, Rutger Beke from Belgium, had a urine test positive for epo.

This occurred in late 2004. Within nine months Beke and his team proved the test was a false positive. His suspension was revoked and he finished fifth in this year’s Hawaii Ironman. If one person can disprove this test then the athletes deserve a full impartial review of current testing. In addition no further suspensions until all information obtained and all questions answered.

Steve Gordon, M.D
Tuesday, November 15, 2005

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Le Tour will live on without Armstrong

In relation to Howard Peel’s letter from last week.

Hmm. I have to say I've never actually heard anyone call them "freedom fries", though I suppose people do. People do a lot of things…maybe in Florida.

There are websites in the US (and in France, I'm sure) promoting sex with animals, advocating race hatred, predicting the end of civilization and developing strong arguments contending that the earth is flat. I'm not sure that I would hazard a characterization of the United States or its citizenry based on the existence or non-existence of any particular website or set of websites.

Also, I would point out that Armstrong may be a personal friend of George Bush, but has expressed views that make it pretty clear that he is at the same time a political opponent of many Bush policies.

If one wants to talk about the virulence of cultural nationalism one might also look to the conditions of social justice available to French immigrant populations and its recent results. Maybe that's a problem shared by many nations and maybe it's the idea of nationalism itself that might be questioned, not whether mine is better or worse than yours. I love it when people talk about US nationalism as if they don't have their own proprietary versions, equally vacuous, equally jingoistic. The whole history of Europe is of the awful results of race-based nationalisms. And US cultural history is in some ways an extension of that legacy; there is no doubt about that.

So the writer has assembled a list of meaningless factoids to support _what_ contention exactly about the US or about Lance Armstrong? And what exactly is proven or asserted by the quotation from Fotheringham? That he's better with words than the writer of the letter? Point taken.

That's all pretty vapid and circumstantial and it certainly doesn't lead easily to any possible "conclusions" or assertions about what an 'American' is, thinks or looks like or what a European is, thinks or looks like. Of course how could it?

So what's your point? You don't like what exactly? You wrote that letter to represent what about what in cycling, in the world? That the US is counter-colonizing European sports to the detriment of all? Wow.

It's all very confusing.

Mark Jenkins

Portland, Oregon
Tuesday, November 15, 2005

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LeBlanc's Tour snub of Armstrong

In relation to Endre Barat’s letter,

I appreciate your attempt at being objective in assessing ASO’s actions and the Armstrong dominance. I will say, however, that it is naïve to discount or ignore that ALL sports have had generational superheroes, so to speak. Whether it be Michael Jordan in basketball or Anneka Sorenstam in golf and Gunder Hagg in middle distance running during the post-war era. These athletes accomplished seemingly insurmountable achievements. Cycling is not excepted from having such achievers. In short, we can all identify a single person in every sport throughout time that is truly alone in their capabilities. Don’t be so blinded by national pride or subliminal envy to deny this fact.

Brian Betner

Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S.A.
Sunday, November 13, 2005

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LeBlanc's Tour snub of Armstrong #2

If I could have asked one question of the ASO organization at the presentation it would have been this; if this past seven years of Tour history are so sad (rightfully or wrongfully), why did you allow Richard "Mr Face of Festina" Virenque to grace the podium after a stage of this year's Tour?

Followup: If a lab still had a sample of Jacques Anquetil or Eddy Merckx's urine from either's last Tour win, would you test it and disqualify them, if it were positive?

Andrew Couch

Boulder, Co
Friday, November 11, 2005

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Tour of Southland

Today I read John Lieswyn's comments regarding stage 8 of the Tour of Southland with some dismay. Perhaps I was even more saddened to read such words coming from someone who has supported this tour and whose performances have been particularly memorable during his visits down under.

Mr Lieswyn commented that the peloton were making better than 2 minutes gain on the leading 3 riders over last 10km prior to shortening today's stage. By my calculations this would mean that over the remaining 20km the major teams could have basically nullified the 3 breakaway riders with regard to GC. In all likelihood, if John is to be believed, the chasing riders would have in effect been less than a minute from the leading trio and therefore the major GC standings would have been essentially unchanged. Because the latter part of the stage prior to the premature stoppage was uphill one would anticipate Lieswyn et al would have made even better inroads once they resumed the flatter final 20 km.

While it is disappointing to see any sporting spectacle foreshortened, the action of the major teams equates to children tossing their toys rather than rising to the adversity of the situation. What a sad day for the spectators and the sponsors that the leading teams can only think about themselves. Perhaps such antics helps explain why New Zealand's premiere cycle race can barely get five minutes of free-to-air TV coverage each day. Shame on you Mr Lieswyn and company.

PS Well ridden McCauley, Chapman and Poad.

Richard Walsh
Friday, November 11, 2005

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Schlimmer response

This response is in relation to Mr Ritter’s letter last week.

T. Ritter: I read with interest the plug for the man's book and the related discussion of the extremes of the 'longest mountain bike route'. What is the exact route and where is it identified?

E.S.: Using the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route for the most part, I rode from Roosville, MT to Pinedale, WY. In Pinedale I left the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route and rode west over the Wyoming Range back to Idaho, then around the north shore of Bear Lake into Utah. The Utah section was basically down the middle of the state incorporating sections of the Shoshone Trail and Great Western Trail. In Arizona I rode down the middle of the state except for a 200-mile detour east around the Grand Canyon (bikes are not allowed below the rims). About half my route across the Grand Canyon State was on the Arizona Trail, with the other half consisting of routes I chose myself (the Arizona Trail is a hiking trail too rough for bikes for the most part).

T. Ritter: There is a route, established by Adventure Cycling and known as The Great Divide Mountain Bike Trail that finishes in New Mexico and does not enter Arizona, as it stays loyal to the Continental Divide. This route goes from the New Mexico/Mexico border to Banff, Alberta, Canada and has been mapped for a few years (the first section in 1996, I believe). I have been along the entire route, as have many others, and while I didn't consider it an intrepid or risky undertaking found it to be absolutely rewarding in so many ways.

E.S.: Yes, many have ridden the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route, but I believe no one has taken the route I have, now dubbed the "Western States Mountain Bike Route." I came up with an idea to ride something long, but different. Something new (in the hiking world, a fine comparison is the "Eastern Continental Trail," an unofficial route combining the Florida, Pinhoti, Appalachian and International Appalachian Trails). In the case of the Western States Mountain Bike Route, the route did not exist before I rode it- and only marginally for these early days- but it is named so the route can be enjoyed by others with some formality of where it goes. It's an absolutely amazing adventure that deserves a ride.

Erik Schlimmer
Thursday, November 10, 2005

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Exercise-induced asthma

I have a lot of sympathy for the asthmatics who require medication in order to compete. All of them had valid points. I wear contact lenses, without which I could not race, so am essentially in the same boat. I am writing only to point out that the justification that using asthma medication "restores the machinery to the functional level you have built up to in training" is the exact reason Chris Sheppard gave for using EPO. This certainly emphasizes that the doping issue is certainly not black and white, and certainly worth exploring further.

Rob Found,

Jasper, Canada
Tuesday, November 8, 2005

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Recent letters pages

Letters 2005

  • November 11: LeBlanc's Tour snub of Armstrong, Exciting again, Le Tour will live on without Armstrong, Armstrong, the TdF, etc, The 2006 Tour de France and Lance, Lance, Le Tour and Ethics, Armstrong snub at Tour presentation, Pro wrestling and cycling, Swimming and Cycling, What TdF?, Fair justice, Another doping letter, Where has common sense gone?, Technology in cycling, Schlimmer
  • November 4: LeBlanc's Tour snub of Armstrong, The 2006 Tour de France and Lance, Le Tour de malcontent, Tour de France 2006, What TdF?, Le Tour wounded, Gossip ruins cycling, EPO, Exercise-induced asthma, Dick Pound and soccer, Tour of US, Tour of California, Swimming and Cycling
  • October 28: Le Tour de Malcontent, LeBlanc's Tour snub of Armstrong, Caution needed, TdF 2006, Has cycling become a honky tonk sport?, Tristan Hoffman, UN effort to fight doping in sport, UCI ProTour, Cam Jennings, Exercise-induced asthma, Chris Sheppard is a class act, Why?, Crocodile Trophy - worlds' toughest race?
  • October 14: Infallible doping tests?, Get on with your life, Doping. What else?, Pound versus Armstrong, Hamilton, etc, L'Equipe forgot - or not, John Lieswyn, Eddy Merckx
  • October 7: John Lieswyn, Bravo, Lieswyn, 1999 Tour de France urine samples, Allan Butler, Tyler Hamilton, Doping versus biomechanical enhancements, Doping control, McQuaid's image, Comment on Chris Horner at Zuri Metzgete, Scientific proof, Thank goodness Moreno lost, What has happened to American Cycling?, Pound versus Armstrong, Hamilton, etc, French bias
  • September 30: Petacchi and McEwen's reactions, Ale-Jet, Ale-Jet blasts his critics..., Petacchi's class, Petacchi, Bravo, Lieswyn, French bias, Tom Danielson, What has happened to American Cycling?, Quote of the year, At the heart of the matter, Lance's EPO tests, Doping control, On Pound and the like, Pound Ill informed, Verbruggen is wrong, Doping and apparel
  • September 23: A quick thanks, Australian worlds team, Go Mick!, Infighting, Pound Ill informed, WADA mess, Heras and the Giro, Verbruggen is wrong, Chris Sheppard busted for EPO, Explaining increases in performance, Quote of the year, Vuelta rest day observations
  • September 16: Vuelta rest day observations, Australian worlds team, Explaining the increases in performance, Debate settled, doping lives on, Samuel Sanchez, Scientific proof, The perfect crime, Another topic please,, Doping, Illegal motivation, Illegal motivation - another possibility, Lance and the Tour de France, Drug use, Alternate Universe, WADA, Chris Sheppard busted for EPO, Just Do It
  • September 9: The debate rages, Bad for cycling, Lance and the Tour de France, EPO Testing and Haematocrit, Doping, Illegal motivation, Lance the Man, Armstrong and doping, Question for Dick Pound..., Land of the Free, home of the Brave, Lance, I have a better idea, Where are the results?, Armstrong's Tour comeback, Don't make that mistake, Lance, Response to the test
  • September 2: Lance Armstrong, all-American boy, Doping, Claude Droussent lies, L'Equipe credibility, Lance versus Jan, Jan versus Lance, Cold fusion and Lance, The perfect crime, EPO and the Wink Wink Standard, Germany owed four yellow jerseys?, Lance, cycling and cancer, Lance issues, The whole Lance doping issue, Neither defense nor attack, The test, Land of the Free, home of the Brave, Armstong couldn't come clean, Summarising the Lance situation, Lance's tests, Keep an open mind, Lance and doping, Check results before you wreck yourself, Seeing is believing, L'Equipe and ASO, and Lance, Lance and EPO, Aussie perspective on the upcoming worlds, A rave rather than a rant
  • August 26: Lance and LeBlanc, Lance versus France, Can of worms story, The Test, Benoit Salmon wins the 1999 Tour, The perfect crime, Armstrong tests positive, L'Equipe and ASO, Lance rubbish, Lance and the French yellow press, Armstrong, EPO and WADA, Lance Downgrading Armstrong victories, Lance doping garbage, Lance versus Jan, Doping, Six stages to win the 99 tour, EPO test under scrutiny, Lance irony, Lance as a spokesman, Cyclists and politicians, Verbruggen's campaign to elect his successor, John Lieswyn, Can of worms, Americans in Paris
  • August 19: Ned Overend, Guidi positive, What is going on at Phonak?, Ullrich's riding style, How about credibility from both sides?, Lieswyn's gesture
  • August 12: Pro Tour 2006, Credibility from both sides?, Zabel leaves T-Mobile, Chris Horner, Ullrich's riding style, Well done Wayne!, Armstrong and class, Possible correlations
  • August 5: Zabel leaves T-Mobile, Thanks from a survivor, Bicycle safety, Message for Chris Horner, Perspective, Discovery in ninth, Tech, Armstrong and class, The King of July!, Heras through rose colored glasses, Possible correlations
  • July 29: Perspective, France and Lance's Legacy, Armstrong and class, Best Wishes to Louise, Levi's Diary, Heras through rose colored glasses, The King of July, Here we go again!, Treat Lance like the others, Tech, Lance Armstrong's time trial equation, Life begins at 30
  • July 22: McEwen - villain to superhero, Underdogs and overdogs at the Tour, Big George, George Hincape, Hincapie's stage win, Cadel's Tour memory, What the fans would love to see, Is Godefroot really NOT the man?, A true classic, Phonak's poor sportsmanship, Phonak double standards, My new hero, Discovery Channel tactics, Lance Infomercial?, Treat Lance like the others, TdF sprint finishes, Leaky Gas?, Little black box
  • July 15: The best seat in the house, Joseba Beloki, Message for Chris Horner, Treat Lance like the others, Lance Infomercial?, McEwen defense, Rail lines in the TdF, Ruse Discovered?, Discovery's unanimous breakdown, IS Jan really the man?, Cycling socks, Patrick Lefevre quit your whining, Armstrong and class, Leaky Gas?, TdF sprint finishes, Who is in charge of the UCI?, Tires and slippery roads, Response to the Vowels of Cycling, Little black box
  • July 8: McEwen defends himself, Tires and slippery roads, Random test on Lance Armstrong, French Government dope controls, The Pro Tour and Grand Tours, Tour de France's early finish?, Here we go again!, Thank you, Ed Kriege, Lance Infomercial?, No, the other Merckx!, The Vowels of Cycling, Armstrong's pre-Tour communiqués, Armstrong and class
  • July 1: No, the other Merckx!, Armstrong's pre-Tour communiqués, The Vowels of Cycling, Figures of merit - TdF tipping, Lance Infomercial?, Daily Terror, Sydney article, Why Michael Rogers will be awesome with T-Mobile, I love it!, MTB news, Twins
  • June 24: Sydney article, Hit and run on cyclists - Australia's new blood sport?, Another fatal hit and run on Australian cyclists, How can Ullrich win the Tour?, Drop Verbruggen, The second American, When the Tour heads up, Droppin' the Kilo!, Kilo or no go, What is Michael Rogers thinking?, Rogers to T-Mobile, For the love of god don't do it Mick!, The first yellow jersey, Horner Impressive, Leave T-Mobile/Fassa Bortolo, renew your career!, Horner's stage win at the Tour de Suisse, Bobby Julich, Daily Terror, Hell on Wheels review
  • June 17: Droppin' the Kilo!, Killing the kilo and 500, The kilo, Axing the Kilo?, The track Time Trials, The first yellow jersey, Armstrong and Class, The year of the comeback, Horner's stage win at the Tour de Suisse
  • June 10: The year of the comeback, An open letter to Cadel Evans, How Ullrich can win the Tour, USPRO/Liberty, Lance, the Tour and the Giro, Lance and the Tour, Show us your discards Godefroot!, Armstrong and Class, Ivan's training ride, Giro comments
  • June 3: Giro comments, Giro excitement vs Tour blah, Ivan Basso, Ivan's training ride, Discovering the future, Jose Rujano, Savoldelli vs Simoni, How Ullrich can win the Tour, Eddy Merckx Interview, Johan Bruyneel, Show us your discards Godefroot!, Improving Pro Tour Team Rankings, Lance and the Tour, Armstrong and class
  • May 27: Giro excitement vs Tour blah, Great Giro!, Double or nothing..., Colle delle Finestre and a Cipo farewell, Joseba Beloki, Ivan's training ride, Hell on Wheels, Matt Wittig, How Ullrich can win the Tour, UCI fines, Armstrong and class, Eddy Merckx Interview, The disappointment of Viatcheslav Ekimov, You have let us down Paolo
  • May 20: Colle delle Finestre tactics, Rogues, It just keeps happening, Davis Phinney, Joseba Beloki, Australia - number one, You have let us down Paolo, Bettini/Cooke, What's up with pro cyclists these days?, Cipo, Cipo, Cipo, A question about team names, The disappointment of Viatcheslav Ekimov, Go Eki!
  • May 13: Hit and run, Bettini vs Cooke, Bettini's Illegal sprint, You have let us down Paolo, Giro, Bettini/Cooke, Cookie's crumble, Bjarne's right: There's only one Jens Voigt!, Jens Voigt and the blind, South Australians protest against hit-and-run death, It just keeps happening, Liberty Seguros, The disappointment of Viatcheslav Ekimov, Go Eki!, Australia - number one, Irresistible in July, UCI weight rule
  • May 6: South Australians protest against hit-and-run death, Tyler Hamilton's case, Hamilton and the facts The USADA decision on Tyler Hamilton, Tyler Hamilton, Tyler, Testing and the Virenque Comparison, How do dopers live with themselves?, General view on doping, Hamilton guilty regardless of the facts, Hamilton verdict, Tyler is good going uphill, Hamilton interview, Klöden comments, Tyler H, Simoni, Grazie Mario, Sheryl Crow, or should we say...Yoko Ono
  • April 29: South Australians protest against hit-and-run death, Tyler Hamilton's case, Hamilton and the facts The USADA decision on Tyler Hamilton, Tyler Hamilton, Tyler, Testing and the Virenque Comparison, How do dopers live with themselves?, General view on doping, Hamilton guilty regardless of the facts, Hamilton verdict, Tyler is good going uphill, Hamilton interview, Klöden comments, Tyler H, Simoni, Grazie Mario, Sheryl Crow, or should we say...Yoko Ono
  • April 22: Lance Armstrong's retirement, W is for Witchhunt, Tyler's mishandling defense, Not for real, is it?, Bad Science, Blood testing issues, Hamilton - finally a decision, Regarding the Tyler Hamilton decision, Tyler Hamilton, Satisfying Verdict for Hamilton Case, How do dopers live with themselves?, Hamilton's case, Tyler Hamilton's case, Hamilton, Hamilton verdict and a call for outside expertise, Tyler Hamilton saga..., Tour de France preview...2006!, Klöden comments, Tour de France Training, The New Dynamic Duo, Sheryl Crow, or should we say...Yoko Ono, Random Musings
  • April 15: Glenn Wilkinson, USADA and Hamilton, Bergman; so sad, ProTour leader's jersey, That's a Jersey?, Too many chiefs?, Track World Championships, What do you think?
  • April 8: The New Dynamic Duo, Boonen's Hairdo, Viral infections and antibiotics, George Hincapie, What do you think?, Track World Championships, VDB?, A little bit more about blood doping, Blood testing issues
  • April 1: Well done Ale-jet, Eyes of tigers..., Viral infections and antibiotics, Let's talk about cycling…, What's worth talking about in cycling?, First Ride of the season, The New Dynamic Duo, Blood testing issues, Sydney Thousand, UCI Pro Tour Grand Theft, not Grand Tour
  • March 18: The Forgotten Hero!, Way to go Bobby, Bobby J, Lance has lost the ‘Eye of the tiger’, Blood testing issues and Hamilton, With all Due Respect, All this Lance Talk..., Is Lance getting soft?
  • March 11: Blood testing issues and Hamilton, Cycling on TV, In Defence of UCI president Hein Verbruggen, Defending the Pro Tour?, Is Lance getting soft?, Lance has lost the "eye of the tiger"
  • March 4: In Defence of the Pro-Tour, Grand Tours back down...for now, Armstrong and Simeoni,Help - what’s on the TV?, Cycling on TV, Lance Defends His Title!, Hamilton movie role downplayed, Blood testing issues and Hamilton, I really don't know when it happened
  • February 25: Lance Defends His Title!, Build it and tear it down?, Build, dismantle and donate!, Lance's Hour Record attempt, I really don't know when it happened, Can't get enough!, Dream on
  • February 18: Build it and tear it down?, Remember Marco, One Reason I Love Cycling, The ongoing Hour Record Saga, Lance’s Hour Record attempt, Can't get enough!
  • February 11: One Reason I Love Cycling, Francisco Cuevas, F-One - Come down to earth Lance!, Armstrong and the Hour, Can't get enough!, Greatest of all time
  • February 4: F-One - Come down to earth Lance!, Armstrong and the Hour, Armstrong and Simeoni, Can't get enough!, Help, Greatest of all time Eddy is King, but who is second best?
  • January 28: "I am the greatest of all time", Armstrong and the Hour Record, F-One - Come down to earth Lance!, Lance Drug Probe, Armstrong and Simeoni, Can’t get enough!, Help, NBC's 2004 RAAM Coverage, Doping, Crash distance from 1km to 3km, Eddy is King, but who is second best?
  • January 21: Professional Cyclists, Der Kaiser's Goals, Jan Ullrich's problem = Lance, Rider of the Year, Crash distance from 1km to 3km, Help, Lance vs. Eddy
  • January 14: Der Kaiser's goals, Help, Foreign stage races, Lance vs. Eddy, Tour '05, Rider of the Year, Best bikes for heavy riders, Quick Step helmets
  • January 7: Death of Dmitri Neliubin, Der Kaiser’s goals, Rider of the Year, Best bikes for heavy riders, Who's Greater? Come on now!, Virenque "most charismatic"?, Downhilling, Downhill time trial, Trendy cyclists, No flat tyres, Spring classics trip advice, Bettini's trainer
  • January 3: Spring classics trip advice, Big Bear ends downhilling, Armstrong and Simeoni, Holding teams accountable, Downhill time trial, Trendy cyclists, Bettini's trainer, No flat tyres

Letters 2004

  • December 24 letters - Why are cyclists so trendy?, Business and cycling, Big Bear ends downhilling, Off-bike weight gain, No flat tires, Armstrong and Simeoni
  • December 17 letters - Business and cycling, Tom versus Axel , Big Bear ends downhilling, Shane Perkins, Spring classics trip advice, Tyler Hamilton, Phonak and the UCI, Why are cyclists so trendy?, Mark Webber interview, Armstrong and Simeoni, Injured and missing it: an update, Clyde Sefton
  • December 10 letters - Why are cyclists so trendy?, Big Bear ends downhilling, Floyd's choices?, Merckx, fit and trim, Pound must go, Spring classics trip advice, Tyler Hamilton, Phonak and the UCI, Punishment: Vandenbroucke vs Hamilton, Prosthetic hip, Armstrong and Simeoni, Dave Fuentes, Homeopathy, Jeremy Yates, TDF coverage for Australia, Weight limits and maintenance, Mark Webber interview
  • December 3 letters - Domestiques vs Lieutenants, Tyler Hamilton, Phonak and the UCI, Dave Fuentes, Santa vs Hairy Guy, Why are cyclists so trendy?, Mark French and homeopathy, Shane Perkins, Jeremy Yates, Weight limits and maintenance, UCI regulations, Armstrong and Simeoni, Prosthetic hip
  • November 26 letters - Mark French and homeopathy, Two big guns in one team, Tyler Hamilton case, Bartoli's retirement, Dave Fuentes, Shane Perkins, Merckx and Armstrong, Training like Lance, Lance Armstrong, Why are cyclists so trendy?, Phonak gets what it deserves, Armstrong and Simeoni, Bike weight, Spouseless riders, Mary McConneloug, Adam Craig, Mark Webber interview, Santa vs Hairy Guy
  • November 19 letters - Tyler Hamilton case, Phonak gets what it deserves, Are you there Mr Coates?, Bike Weight, Merckx and Maertens make up, Heart troubles, Where to find cycling spouses, Mark Webber interview, Lance Armstrong, Where's Greg?, What ever happened to..., Why are cyclists so trendy?, Armstrong and Simeoni, l'Etape du Tour registration, Still Laughing
  • November 12 letters - Why Armstrong will ride the 2005 Tour, Scott Sunderland, Why are cyclists so trendy?, Armstrong and Simeoni, Where to find cycling spouses, Lance on Italian selection, Heart troubles, l'Etape du Tour registration, Tour 2005 team time trial, What ever happened to..., Love and a yellow bike
  • November 5 letters - Love and a yellow bike, Tour 2005, Where to find cycling spouses, Why are cyclists so trendy?, Lance on Italian selection, Armstrong and Simeoni, Tour of Southland, Construction technique for veloway, Heart troubles, l'Etape du Tour registration, Rahsaan Bahati
  • Letters Index – The complete index to every letters page on