French still bitter that Lance Armstrong is better than them.

GWJ is a media organization! Some would even call them a conglomerate now that they have web AND radio mediums!

Heretic...it is not so!!!

Boy, the OP looks a little ironic in light of that article, doesn't it?

Just to let you all know, one of the most outspoken critics on Armstrong is a former Irish (not French, mind you) professional cyclist and journalist Paul Kimmage. He is currently out of work and the UCI (cycling governing body) are suing him for writing that they covered up a doping positive for Lance Armstrong. Oddly enough, the case doesn't look like it going to go away either and Kimmage has little funds to defend himself. In the meantime, people are donating money to his defense fund here. I urge you all to help him out.

As a former professional sportsman myself who remained clean only to see those that I know cheated get ahead of me, I can assure you that reading this thread was difficult reading.

Edit: Here is Kimmage confronting Armstrong before the 2009 Tour of California.

As pointed out in the comments, they guys to his left and right now admit to doping.

Axon wrote:

Just to let you all know, one of the most outspoken critics on Armstrong is a former Irish (not French, mind you) professional cyclist and journalist Paul Kimmage. He is currently out of work and the UCI (cycling governing body) are suing him for writing that they covered up a doping positive for Lance Armstrong. Oddly enough, the case doesn't look like it going to go away either and Kimmage has little funds to defend himself. In the meantime, people are donating money to his defense fund here. I urge you all to help him out.

I saw that link today while looking at Greg LeMond's Tweets. His last tweet links to it too.

https://twitter.com/GregLemond

It's interesting how this has all played out.

Some former collegues of mine 6 years ago who were cyclists were acquainted with a former US postal team rider who was canned after going to team management and telling them he wanted what Armstrong was on.

I believed it, but didn't consider it strong enough evidence to bring up until now.

Seems common enough in endurance sports. Armstrong's denials are getting much less credible each year.

I think its just the point of denial now even for him mentally.

I think the stat I heard was 20/21 of the riders during his run who finished on the podium were either were found guilty or admitted to doping.

And the one probably just was lucky enough not to have the evidence to indict him too.

Doesn't that mean your sport is basically broken?

LeapingGnome wrote:

Doesn't that mean your sport is basically broken?

I dunno. Is it broken to air your dirty laundry? Is it better to admit there's a problem or to stick your head in the sand while all your players juice like baseball or football?

LeapingGnome wrote:

Doesn't that mean your sport is basically broken?

I think that was the height of their doping era... Similar to baseballs.

I think its safe to say both sports are 'cleaner' now or they are just using even better stuff then ever.

Thing with these guys tho is you have to assume its some crazy mental pride and doubling down on their lie. Hell quadrupling down.

Seems similar to Bonds and Clemens in the sense theres a window where you can come clean and apologize. Your reputation will be obviously heavily tarnished but you at least get some credit to owning up to it. Otherwise the lie becomes so deep you never come clean. Honestly at this point for all 3 they have denied for so long that if they came clean you get the feeling the backlash would be even worse.

Minarchist wrote:
LeapingGnome wrote:

Doesn't that mean your sport is basically broken?

I dunno. Is it broken to air your dirty laundry? Is it better to admit there's a problem or to stick your head in the sand while all your players juice like baseball or football?

The sport is definitely broken, and it's definitely better to let the facts come to light and attempt to fix the issue.

Part of me thinks that doping should just be allowed so it can become an arms race. The bigger part recoils at the thought as I still have a somewhat purist view of sport, and also don't want any hypothetical future children who take an interest in sport to have to do something harmful to compete.

To be fair to cycling, they are the only sport I'm aware of that require a biological passport from its athletes. This makes blood doping very difficult to do and I do suspect cycling is a lot cleaner now than many other sports because of it.

As for allowing drugs in sport, I can see the reasoning behind it because it is based on the notion that its so hard to stamp out. However everything hasn't been tried. The biological passport would make it difficult to do but there should be mandatory testing every quarter and lifetime bans coupled with fines. The problem, of course, is that all will cost money not only for the testing but the short term damage of high profile names being ran out of the game. I wouldn't mind as I didn't leave the game with a lot of riches but I'm sure those making the big money don't want to upset the apple cart.

The problem with allowing drugs is that their use is so seriously damaging over any length of time. The problems with the abuse of steroids is well-regulated, but even cycling drugs like EPO can thicken the blood so much that you die of a heart attack at 34. Is that something you want to be officially sanctioned?

I thought sport was supposed to be a demonstration of pure human ability. To me, those who are willing to toss that ideal aside for empty entertainment or false, hollow victories are only deserving of our pity because they miss the point altogether.

We've had cultural myths of the 'deal with the Devil' for a thousand years or more... some people will take any price, over the long term, in exchange for short-term benefit. If you tell kids that they can be huge stars at 18, but in exchange, they'll be dead at 22, some of them will grab with both hands.

Considering the amount of damage you have to do to your body (to say nothing of your personal relationships or your life outside sports) just to compete clean & drug free at the highest levels of sports these days, aren't we past the point of using "do you know what that will do to your body?" when talking about PED's? Just think the damage that comes from Vicodin addictions alone--addictions that start with seeking perfectly legitimate pain relief from how inherently harmful these sports are at that elite level.

LouZiffer wrote:

I thought sport was supposed to be a demonstration of pure human ability. To me, those who are willing to toss that ideal aside for empty entertainment or false, hollow victories are only deserving of our pity because they miss the point altogether.

The victories may be hollow, but the benefits that comes with winning are real. Lance Armstrong may be a fraud, but he's a fraud who frolics with hot blondes on a bed covered in $100 bills.

Funkenpants wrote:
LouZiffer wrote:

I thought sport was supposed to be a demonstration of pure human ability. To me, those who are willing to toss that ideal aside for empty entertainment or false, hollow victories are only deserving of our pity because they miss the point altogether.

The victories may be hollow, but the benefits that comes with winning are real. Lance Armstrong may be a fraud, but he's a fraud who frolics with a hot blond on a bed covered in $100 bills.

Yep. I don't envy this guy for the fake life he lives. He gets those things, a public that generally doesn't trust him anymore, a legacy that's scrubbed from the record books (hopefully), and - as an added bonus - the mind of an unrepentant sociopath.

Funkenpants wrote:
LouZiffer wrote:

I thought sport was supposed to be a demonstration of pure human ability. To me, those who are willing to toss that ideal aside for empty entertainment or false, hollow victories are only deserving of our pity because they miss the point altogether.

The victories may be hollow, but the benefits that comes with winning are real. Lance Armstrong may be a fraud, but he's a fraud who frolics with hot blondes on a bed covered in $100 bills.

He dated one of the Olsen twins. That was an immediate red flag for me when I heard that and was completely confused. I envy nothing about him.

jowner wrote:
Funkenpants wrote:
LouZiffer wrote:

I thought sport was supposed to be a demonstration of pure human ability. To me, those who are willing to toss that ideal aside for empty entertainment or false, hollow victories are only deserving of our pity because they miss the point altogether.

The victories may be hollow, but the benefits that comes with winning are real. Lance Armstrong may be a fraud, but he's a fraud who frolics with hot blondes on a bed covered in $100 bills.

He dated one of the Olsen twins. That was an immediate red flag for me when I heard that and was completely confused. I envy nothing about him.

Are you sure it was only one of them?

Funkenpants wrote:
LouZiffer wrote:

I thought sport was supposed to be a demonstration of pure human ability. To me, those who are willing to toss that ideal aside for empty entertainment or false, hollow victories are only deserving of our pity because they miss the point altogether.

The victories may be hollow, but the benefits that comes with winning are real. Lance Armstrong may be a fraud, but he's a fraud who frolics with hot blondes on a bed covered in $100 bills.

Total hearsay, but from the same source that told me about the doping 6 years ago. Apparently after his 3rd win he went and bet on himself to win 7 in a row at wild odds. If that's true he has piles of money to burn to keep himself warm at night, even if he's sued for his prize and sponsorship money.

MrDeVil909 wrote:
Minarchist wrote:
LeapingGnome wrote:

Doesn't that mean your sport is basically broken?

I dunno. Is it broken to air your dirty laundry? Is it better to admit there's a problem or to stick your head in the sand while all your players juice like baseball or football?

The sport is definitely broken, and it's definitely better to let the facts come to light and attempt to fix the issue.

Part of me thinks that doping should just be allowed so it can become an arms race. The bigger part recoils at the thought as I still have a somewhat purist view of sport, and also don't want any hypothetical future children who take an interest in sport to have to do something harmful to compete.

This. Do you seriously want to have your kids coach sit down with them and talk about the drugs they're going to have to take if they want to go any further in the sport they love? "It's to hard to prevent" doesn't sound like a particularly good excuse to me. Given the money there is in professional sport I don't think you need much more than the will to make enforcement happen.

jowner wrote:
Funkenpants wrote:
LouZiffer wrote:

I thought sport was supposed to be a demonstration of pure human ability. To me, those who are willing to toss that ideal aside for empty entertainment or false, hollow victories are only deserving of our pity because they miss the point altogether.

The victories may be hollow, but the benefits that comes with winning are real. Lance Armstrong may be a fraud, but he's a fraud who frolics with hot blondes on a bed covered in $100 bills.

He dated one of the Olsen twins. That was an immediate red flag for me when I heard that and was completely confused. I envy nothing about him.

Lol, dude - that was the exact red flag for me. Frankly, I find this whole situation humorous.

Maq wrote:
MrDeVil909 wrote:
Minarchist wrote:
LeapingGnome wrote:

Doesn't that mean your sport is basically broken?

I dunno. Is it broken to air your dirty laundry? Is it better to admit there's a problem or to stick your head in the sand while all your players juice like baseball or football?

The sport is definitely broken, and it's definitely better to let the facts come to light and attempt to fix the issue.

Part of me thinks that doping should just be allowed so it can become an arms race. The bigger part recoils at the thought as I still have a somewhat purist view of sport, and also don't want any hypothetical future children who take an interest in sport to have to do something harmful to compete.

This. Do you seriously want to have your kids coach sit down with them and talk about the drugs they're going to have to take if they want to go any further in the sport they love?

Like I said above, everyone's going to have to have that conversation because of the toll these sports put on the human body. There may be reasons to keep PED's out of sports, but the argument about drugs--when athletes are awash in painkillers and cortisone injections and anesthesia--isn't one of them, not when you look at what competing at the level of a Lance Armstrong requires in terms of performance and training.

Isn't a lot of steroid usage about making the human body more capable of dealing with what modern training regiments do to it, or healing faster from the injuries these modern sports produce with how much strain they put on the human body?

CheezePavilion wrote:

Like I said above, everyone's going to have to have that conversation because of the toll these sports put on the human body. There may be reasons to keep PED's out of sports, but the argument about drugs--when athletes are awash in painkillers and cortisone injections and anesthesia--isn't one of them, not when you look at what competing at the level of a Lance Armstrong requires in terms of performance and training.

Isn't a lot of steroid usage about making the human body more capable of dealing with what modern training regiments do to it, or healing faster from the injuries these modern sports produce with how much strain they put on the human body?

I think what should be discussed is where the line exists between treatment and enhancement. Athletes get injured for sure, and should know what they're getting into before they decide to take that path as a profession. Without a level playing field though, any sport becomes a farce. We can all point to examples of where it is that currently (cycling, for instance!). "Fixing it" will be an ongoing thing in many instances as changes in technology make it impossible to do completely. I agree that part of that process should also be the discussion you're talking about.

Maq wrote:

This. Do you seriously want to have your kids coach sit down with them and talk about the drugs they're going to have to take if they want to go any further in the sport they love?

Being a professional in any sport is different than being an amateur who engages in a sport for love. As with any job, you know going in that people will be chasing cash and that some people are going to outright cheat.

I knew a guy in college who played on the football team and was good enough to go pro. But he had to put on 20-30 pounds of lean muscle to be competitive at that level. He was facing a choice of looking for an entry level job like anyone else in our class, or playing as a pro and making hundreds of thousands of dollars just out of college. I'm not surprised at the choice he made to go for the glory and juice his way to a pro-level body. People are making these choices everyday. It's part of the sports business at this point.

Funkenpants wrote:

People are making these choices everyday. It's part of the sports business at this point.

That is a factor, I agree, but you cannot discount how competitive some people are. Rugby has only been professional for 17 years and is it commonly accepted that doping was rife in French rugby during from about the 60s' on. Not singling them out and it could have gone on elsewhere but that is the one I'm sure of.

I don't want this to come out as arrogant or big headed so please take it as just a benign statement but I'm not entirely sure I wouldn't have broken my body (both shoulders dislocated, crushed disc in my neck, cracked vertebrae in my lower back, arthritic knees and hands) if rugby never turned professional because I have a really nasty competitive streak in me. I could name former players of amateur rugby or our national sports which is also amateur who are physical wrecks but would happily do it again. What the money brings is access to better doctors and drugs, I'm really not sure it warps the ethics of the individuals that much but I'm not naive enough to believe that it isn't a factor.

CheezePavilion wrote:

Isn't a lot of steroid usage about making the human body more capable of dealing with what modern training regiments do to it, or healing faster from the injuries these modern sports produce with how much strain they put on the human body?

The first part is right. I'm not aware of anything that will aid you from recovering faster from injury than rehabilitation, ice and physiotherapy so the latter isn't a factor but you've basically got the right idea on how steroids work.

I'll explain the basic areas of doping that exist and how they work, the risks in using them (short and long).

Stimulants.

These are the drugs that interfere with your nervous system in certain ways in order to improve alertness or ignore the impacts of fatigue. They can take the shape of a caffeine tablet or cup of espresso (legal) all the way to amphetamines (illegal). They are the really old school version of doping and frankly probably do more harm then good and only serve to develop an addiction that the athlete has to feed to remain close to normal.

Blood Doping.

This is what Lance and the cyclists are doing. In real simple terms its about increasing your red blood cell count so your circulatory system can deliver more oxygen to your muscles. In endurance sports like cycling and running this has been a major problem because even if you managed to find a way to stop the drugs (EPO and the like) the athletes can achieve similar results by having blood transfusions. This is incredibly dangerous form of doping that can give you strokes and heart attacks while in the long run you are doing damage to your kidneys.

Steroids.

Now steroids are different. While the first two help you perform better (or at least in theory) taking steroids and maintaining what you've always done will yield you very little extra. What steroids does, as CheezePavilion points out, is help you to recover faster and particularly in power and strength exercises. Even at my fittest, I would have to wait 48 hours before I could return to the same muscle group in a power and strength exercise. In the case of a steroid user that time is cut down to a handful of hours and train twice even three times a day on the same group. Sprinters and field athletics love this stuff but any sport that requires power is in there as well i.e. American Football. As Funkenpants said above, there is a threshold above which even the most committed cannot get over without the use of steroids. Its just not physically possible.

The downside to steroids are a little complicated. The long term is easy to describe in that you fall over dead in your fifties due to the damage done to your heart. In the short term however while your muscles will develop twice or three times faster than normal (as long as you are training two are three times as much) your tendons will only develop as the original rate. This leads to pretty nasty injuries usually around shoulders and knees because the superstructure around those joints get completely unbalanced.

End of lecture

Let me repeat as I think some are missing this point. Cycling now as Biological Passports and mandatory testing. This makes doping incredibly hard to do to the point now that the current Tour de France winner, Bradley Wiggins, is generally accepted as clean.

Clean sports can be achieve but it costs money so therefore the narrative is put out there by many sports bodies that its hopeless. You should not accept.