Lance comeback

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snailmale
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Post by snailmale » 09 Sep 2008 09:55

I thought road racing had become more interesting in the last couple of years. I dont dispute his talent, but for me he rates a '10' on the bore-ometer. I think we should have a whip-round so that he could be paid to stay at home. :(
It is better to be interesting rather than exact

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Post by CakeStop » 10 Sep 2008 15:35

It sounded like a fabrication at first and I didn't believe it but hey ho.

I'm not sure whether it's good for cycling, he seems to have a different agenda and noble that that might be, I'm uneasy about a major sporting event being used to promote it.

I expect the ASO will find some way of excluding his team though.
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Post by Ringo » 10 Sep 2008 16:18

according to eurosport today ASO have said they have no grounds on which to not let him ride. if he can find a team he'll be riding next year.

just got to see who he'll be riding for. astana have been the favourites but i can't see contador, kloden, leiphiemer et al riding for lance. they all want to win it themselves.

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Post by Neil Compton » 10 Sep 2008 18:39

Lance boring. ! No way, not compared to some of the riders in recent tours. Just curious to who you think were exciting riders during lance's reign and recently.?

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Post by Ringo » 10 Sep 2008 22:53

Neil Compton wrote:Lance boring. ! No way, not compared to some of the riders in recent tours. Just curious to who you think were exciting riders during lance's reign and recently.?
agreed, the 2003 tour was the best i've ever seen. it's not lance's fault that he was so much better then everyone else.

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Post by Ed Moss » 11 Sep 2008 08:52

Ringo I suggest you try and see the 1989 tour :wink:

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Post by Ringo » 11 Sep 2008 11:02

i know the 1989 tour was supposed to be great but i was too young to remember it.

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Post by Ed Moss » 11 Sep 2008 11:21

Heres a taster (do not adjust your set the late 80's were that colourful)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YafPXSN3ShI

The amazing thing is that Lemond won it without much help from his team. This was his big comeback year after his hunting accident and sponsors thought he was past it....

This tour pretty much ended Fignons career, he was never the same after the TT defeat.

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Post by snailmale » 11 Sep 2008 11:30

Ringo wrote:
Neil Compton wrote:Lance boring. ! No way, not compared to some of the riders in recent tours. Just curious to who you think were exciting riders during lance's reign and recently.?
agreed, the 2003 tour was the best i've ever seen. it's not lance's fault that he was so much better then everyone else.
I thought that comment might ruffle the odd feather. :D Perhaps I was born too soon! I was brought up on people like Coppi and Merckx, riders who could win any type of event, single day classics and major tours, with the hour record and world pursuit championships thrown in.
More recently Stephen Roche, took the Giro, the Tour and the World Champs in the same year. Miguel Indurain, who ground out a succession of Tour wins prior to Armstrong was also (to me) pretty unexciting but at least he won a couple of Giro's and Olympic and World championship medals as well. Apart from the Worlds in 1993 and the Fleche Wallone in '96, Armstrong didnt 'show' in much else during his career. I dont deny the great talent of Armstrong and his single- minded pursuit of Tour glory. (it's possibly this single-minded attitude that * @%%^% me off)I'm also happy to acknowledge that a T de F victory is still the pinnacle of achievement (even though its image has become somewhat tawdry over recent years,) but it's still just one event in a whole season of classic stage and single day races. I accept that he dominated his (Tour) contemporaries, but for me his clinical, 'Tour only', approach doesn't make him an exciting rider. He's an artisan, not an artist and I like my 'heroes' with a little more charisma.
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Post by Neil Compton » 11 Sep 2008 12:24

I enjoyed the tours when Greg Lemond won and that was classic when he pipped Fignon in Paris. I also loved the stage when he cought Hinault on one of the climbs and they rode over the finish together.

Roche, Millar, Kelly, some great tours that they rode in as well.

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Post by John Sanderson » 11 Sep 2008 15:53

I think it's good to see him back - I think it's sad that people seem keen to kick the most successful - e.g. Michael Schumacher - on the basis that they are boring.

To be fair - he must have some b@lls to step back up to the plate!!!
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Post by Albert Cox » 11 Sep 2008 17:55

I thought it was only Australians who enjoyed
'Decapitating the tallest poppy' ...just because it's taller.
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Post by snailmale » 12 Sep 2008 09:50

John Sanderson wrote:I think it's good to see him back - I think it's sad that people seem keen to kick the most successful - e.g. Michael Schumacher - on the basis that they are boring.

To be fair - he must have some b@lls to step back up to the plate!!!
I'm not kicking Lance on a personal basis, or questioning his success. He obviously achieved his personal objectives and overcame great problems along the way. I just think it might have been good for the sport if he had widened the scope of his ambition beyond the Tour, even if it meant fewer Tour wins. He had all the attributes of a 'complete rider and I think it a shame that he chose not to flaunt that talent, but to limit his 'stage' to three weeks in July.

As regards his comeback, yes, its a really brave decision at the age of 36 and several years off. I wouldnt like to see him get a humiliating hammering, although I suspect he's too 'canny ' to get himself in that position
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Post by Ringo » 12 Sep 2008 11:50

John Sanderson wrote: To be fair - he must have some b@lls to step back up to the plate!!!
and seeing as he only has one it's even more impressive :lol:

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Post by John Sanderson » 12 Sep 2008 12:30

and seeing as he only has one it's even more impressive
LOL - OK - I walked into that one!

It must be a massive ball!!! :shock:
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Post by George » 13 Sep 2008 09:44

Let's distinguish between LA being boring and the racing being boring. In any sport, if the outcome of a 'contest' is more or less a foregone conclusion, it ceases to be a compelling spectacle. And that's what we had at the Tour during the 90s. It wasn't LA's 'fault' that he was so much better than the rest (which he undeniably was, regardless of what you may suspect he or his rivals were using), but 6 of his 7 Tour wins were very boring to watch because the opposition simply wasn't in his league. The LA years were, as Ed rightly points out, a complete contrast to the 89 edition, when LeMond beat Fignon. That was easily the best spectacle in my years of Tour watching, precisely because the outcome was very much in doubt at the start, and remained in doubt for the whole three weeks, right up until seconds before the very last rider (Fignon) crossed the line on the very last stage.

I've never regarded LA as a boring person (far from it); but I've never much liked him either. Of course, the public gets only a tiny glimpse of a sporting superstar's personality, so you can never be sure what kind of person he or she is. Nevertheless, the glimpses one gets of LA don't endear him to me. He comes across as cold, arrogant and vindictive. And, for that reason, I have always found it hard to rejoice in his successes, and would find it hard to see him win again.

I sort of agree with Alan, but I think what he's talking about is how accomplished LA was as a rider. It's ultimately futile, of course, to compare performances across generations, because the racing world changes: the circumstances under which Coppi did what he did were very different from the circumstances under which Merckx did what he did, and different again from the circumstances under which LA did what he did. Nevertheless, one can't help wondering: if Merckx had concentrated exclusively on the Tour, could he have won as many as LA; and if LA had lived in an era when everyone had a proper go at everything, could he have won as many events as emphatically as Eddy? I'm inclined to answer 'probably' to the first question, and 'probably not' to the second. So, like Alan, I rate Armstrong as one of the best riders ever, but Merckx as the best.

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Post by Ringo » 13 Sep 2008 11:46

agreed george, but for riders of my age lance will always be a huge role-model (if thats the right word). I know people will always say that coppi and anquetil and merckx and hinault were the best, but i wasn't around to see them ride. in my years of watching cycling i can vaguely remember watching indurain dominate with my dad but lance is the only 'legend' who has been around in my cycling lifetime.

as such i will always be a huge fan (unless of course he is found guilty of anything) and i look forward to his comeback even though i can't really see him winning it. i can't see him signing for astana with all there superstars and the only team who can dominate the peleton now like disco used to are csc who also won't sign him. while he was a great rider, a huge part of his skill was his tactics and without a strong team he will be missing that huge part of his arsenal.

oh well, guess we'll have to wait and see.

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Post by CakeStop » 13 Sep 2008 12:05

George wrote:Nevertheless, the glimpses one gets of LA don't endear him to me. He comes across as cold, arrogant and vindictive.
I'm currently reading "A Century of Cycling" by William Fotheringham which profiles all of the most successful male cyclists over that period and it appears that this could be said about many (but not all) of those who dominated the sport in their time.
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Post by Ringo » 13 Sep 2008 12:10

well they say that in order to be the best you've got to be selfish and always put yourself first. they also say say perfection requires a bit of madness. maybe it's just this selfishness and madness that's coming across in his interviews and in the public eye.

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Post by Neil Compton » 13 Sep 2008 14:02

I'm already looking forward to the tour now and even if he dosn't do that well, does it matter... no.

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Post by Si-D » 13 Sep 2008 18:22

I agree Neil.

Providing he doesn't sign to Astana we could see a Lemond/Fignon style battle between him and Contador.

How good would that be??!! :D
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Post by Neil Compton » 13 Sep 2008 18:37

Yer tbh i hope he dosn't sign for Astana too.

Talking of Lemond/Fignon, i just watched the tours 20 greatest moments on ITV4. Just brought tears to my eyes watching it.

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Post by George » 14 Sep 2008 21:39

CakeStop wrote:
George wrote:Nevertheless, the glimpses one gets of LA don't endear him to me. He comes across as cold, arrogant and vindictive.
I'm currently reading "A Century of Cycling" by William Fotheringham which profiles all of the most successful male cyclists over that period and it appears that this could be said about many (but not all) of those who dominated the sport in their time.
I think there's more than a little truth in that, and in what Adrian says. Nevertheless, I think there's a difference between believing oneself to be the best in particular discipline (common in successful people) and being dismissive or contemptuous of one's opponents (as LA often gives me the impression of being); and a difference between being so focused as to exhibit a selfish disregard for others (common in successful people) and actually being plain nasty to others (as LA has been accused of being).

But, yes, even if LA's negative press is justified, he's not the first cycling great to have a few character flaws: everything I've read about Anquetil leads me to believe he was a thoroughly nasty piece of work. On the other hand, what I've read and heard about Hinault is more positive: maybe he was/is proud, pig-headed and often unreasonable, but he seems also to be a loyal, principled and generally personable bloke, and certainly a lot more 'human' than the aforementioned multi-Tour winners. And, from the next rung of greatness down, Kelly and, more recently, Zabel and Boonen have always made a positive impression on me (as people, I mean, not simply as riders). So I think it is possible to be successful without being a complete b@stard.

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Post by Rod Goodfellow » 16 Sep 2008 11:19

Of course Lance is not a complete barsteward !

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Post by Neil Compton » 16 Sep 2008 11:49

He always seemed polite to me when being interviewed. Now take Cavendish for instance, completely different, an A$$.

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Post by Ed Moss » 02 Oct 2008 18:50

And a chance to clear this mess up once and for all....

http://www.cyclingweekly.co.uk/news/Fre ... 69049.html

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Post by Neil Compton » 02 Oct 2008 19:30

What with samples almost 10 years old that lord knows whats been done to them. Can bet if it was a french rider wanting to ride again he wouldn't have all these problems.

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Post by George » 04 Oct 2008 21:23

I dread to think what any analyst would make of this, but last night I dreamt that I bumped in Lance in the lay-by at the top of our hill. He was charm itself, and I came away thinking I had misjudged him. We exchanged good-humoured banter: I told him that I had never taken any of this retirement malarky seriously: he simply hadn't wanted to ride the Tour the year that it came up Ankerdine.

Then I woke up and remembered that it had been the ToB that had come up Ankerdine, not the TdF.

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Post by Mattoid » 09 Oct 2008 13:48

As he is such a nice man, they are bending the rules for him now...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/other_s ... 641299.stm

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Post by Ed Moss » 09 Oct 2008 17:16

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ :roll: :?

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Post by Si-D » 09 Oct 2008 18:58

First of all I do like Lance, what he has achieved is pretty amazing stuff.
I also see why he annoys people too - his overconfident, cocky ameriCAN attitude, and total devotion to only The Tour for starters.

But does anyone else think he's been secretly locked away in his garage for the last 18 months, training his nut off on the turbo in preparation for this 'surprise' comeback??

Either way, it appears there's more of a publicity/political slant to his agenda.
First to take his Live Strong charity out of the US and raise it's awareness on a global scale.
Then to follow it up by running for Major of Texas.

...maybe?

I can't think of a better way of gaining ridiculous amounts of media hype and attention than The One & Only Lance Armstrong on his Comeback Tour!

Let's hope it does wonders for raising public awareness of Cycling.
Otherwise it'll just be him reducing the 'Tour De France' to 'The Lance Armstrong Show'!!
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Post by Fred2637 » 09 Oct 2008 19:28

Lance's first tour/ race will be in South Australia on 20th -25th January 2009.
Three cheers for the champ, hip hip....................

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Post by Neil Compton » 10 Oct 2008 09:45

"Otherwise it'll just be him reducing the 'Tour De France' to 'The Lance Armstrong Show'!!"

That's a bit unfair. It's the media that could end up doing that. The guy has won seven tours, survived cancer and been in the spotlight because of it. It's inevitable that he will get attention.

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Post by Si-D » 10 Oct 2008 15:18

Yeah, that's fair comment, it probably should of read 'the media' instead of 'him',
tho I'm sure he'll still use it to his advantage for the aforementioned reasons.
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Post by Ed Moss » 14 Jun 2012 08:20

Wonder if this time, the charges will stick?

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Post by AlanW » 14 Jun 2012 09:47

Ed Moss wrote:Wonder if this time, the charges will stick?
Yes indeed, and if he is it will be a bitter blow to the sport.
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Post by Ed Moss » 14 Jun 2012 10:21

Sorry don't agree, it's good for the sport, he's from an era where doping was the norm, today's peleton have "mostly" a different attitude.

He can't be allowed to get off away with one of the biggest sporting frauds in history, just not ethical.

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Post by Les Ladbury » 14 Jun 2012 11:59

He can't be allowed to get off away with one of the biggest sporting frauds in history, just not ethical.[/quote]

Ed, Do you know something that we don't. I dislike Armstrong as a person for a number of reasons but there are 3 facts beyond dispute.

1/ He has won the TdeF 7 times as well as the World Road Champs.
2/ As far as I know he has never tested positive for drugs.
3/ With his medical record, as he has stated, would he dabble with performance enhancing medication ?

The French loathe him and they would be the first to nail him if they could. So Ed, what is this "fraud" of which you speak ?

Don't get me going on the Contador case.

I think that there are wheels turning within cycling that we know nothing of and it's this which I find disturbing.
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Post by George » 14 Jun 2012 12:03

It's impossible for people like us to ever be sure about who is/was up to what when it comes to doping. Regardless of the outcome of the case, I expect there will always be some doubt as to whether justice has been done, since a lot of the scientific evidence seems open to interpretation and few of the witnesses on either side may reasonably be described as entirely impartial.

Nevertheless, there are certain people whom I have always suspected of doping, on the basis of a combination of circumstantial evidence and 'intuition'. And Armstrong, Bruyneel and Contador have for many years been at the top of my list of suspects, even before the likes of Landis and Hamilton turned their coats.

Like Ed, I suspect that, whatever the short-term damage to the sport, in the long term it is probably a positive thing for dopers to be sanctioned, even very high-profile ones.

As an aside, I don't really believe in intuition as such. I use the word as a sort of shorthand for a process that I don't really understand, but suspect consists of reading tiny subliminal signals in the form of body language, facial expressions, tone of voice, etc, etc.

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Post by George » 14 Jun 2012 12:33

Les Ladbury wrote:1/ He has won the TdeF 7 times as well as the World Road Champs.
Les, I don't think anyone has ever suggested that he isn't a phenomenal athlete. He showed himself to be extremely talented as a youth, when I think it's highly unlikely he was doping. My guess is that he was also clean when he won the world champs at 21, before his cancer. The question is, did he subsequently decide to add a little to the talent he had naturally?
Les Ladbury wrote:2/ As far as I know he has never tested positive for drugs.
That means nothing Les. I've never had a speeding fine. It doesn't mean I've never broken the speed limit.
Les Ladbury wrote:3/ With his medical record, as he has stated, would he dabble with performance enhancing medication ?
I've never understood that argument. Why should going to the very edge of the abyss and staring in necessarily make someone more cautious? Why shouldn't it make you acutely aware that you only live once and doubly determined not to waste any chance to realise your dreams? Why shouldn't it make a person like Armstrong think that the cancer could come back any time, and that if life was going to be short, he was damn well going to make it good?

His experiences can't have failed to open his eyes to how medications and medical procedures can alter the working of the human body. And when you've been receiving chemotherapy and all kinds of treatments for ages and come through the lot, I bet a bit of EPO of HGH seems like pretty small beer.
Les Ladbury wrote:The French loathe him and they would be the first to nail him if they could.
But that doesn't make him innocent Les. He got loads of people's backs up with his coldness and arrogance, and I bet there are plenty who would like to pay him back. If officials in France or elsewhere suspected him of doping but could never catch him at it, it's human nature that they'd become almost obsessive about nabbing him, like a farmer who keeps losing his hens to but never quite manages to catch the fox.
Les Ladbury wrote:I think that there are wheels turning within cycling that we know nothing of and it's this which I find disturbing.
I think you're probably right there. But it's at least plausible that there are people within the sport who think that they 'know' he's guilty and it's become a crusade for them; I wouldn't be surprised if there are people behind the scenes saying "I'm going to get that barsteward for leading us such a merry dance all these years and then laughing all the way to the bank."

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Post by Ed Moss » 14 Jun 2012 14:02

I've got no evidence that stands up in court, just far too much circumstantial evidence

1. All his team mates have tested positive at some point after leaving his team
2. How do you beat a doped Ullrich, Basso, Heras, Hamilton etc etc on training alone
3. Good bit starts @2.10 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ryH650Br8uI Lemond (one of a few cyclists who I believe didn't dope) makes a very good point about power output
4. 90% of what Paul Kimmage has written in the past 10 years
5. Several of his team mates have testified under oath that he doped, a very serious offence if they lied.
6. He made the TDF very boring
7. There may have been a UCI coverup, Lance and a lot of other people made millions during his career, why rock the boat.

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Post by Albert Cox » 14 Jun 2012 16:57

This thread reminds me of Australian expression 'Tallest poppy syndrome'....
ALC

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Post by Les Ladbury » 14 Jun 2012 17:28

George,
Can I respond to your comments/observation which you have made following my post re.Lance Armstrong.

1/ You missed the point completely here. What I am saying is to win these events with the certainty of being tested afterwards would really be pushing your luck. Do you remember l'affaire Festina about 10 or 12 years ago. At this time the drugs issue was taken out of the hands of the Tour management and the UCI and it became an issue under French Law. If you recall the Gendarms moved in and took complete control. Raids on hotels, checks on personnel and so on. Believe me French Gendarms don't p**s about. I'm not a lawyer much less an expert on French Criminal law but this is the area which the sport found itself in. I believe that it is a criminal offence to administer performance enhancing drugs in France now, although I could well be wrong on that .
However the point I am making is do you think that Armstrong would get involved in drugs under this scenario ?
Most of LAs TdeF wins came after the Festina affaire.

2/Your analogy to speeding is rather ridiculous. They are not the same thing at all. If you insist on this taking performance enhancing drugs in the sure knowledge that you will be tested at the end of the event is on a par with driving past a speed camera at 100mph.

3/ If you don't understand this there is nothing that I can say.

As I have said LA is intensely disliked in France and as I have said if they could nail him for a drugs offence they would.

I do not have much time for Armstrong as a man but agree that his TdeF peformances are phenomenal.

Incidently I know from personal experience what effect a performance enhancing drug can have and I have also been warned off taking such in a race because drug testing was to be carried out afterwards. I am not going to elaborate except to say that it wasn't in this country.

Finally you do realise that Mark Cavandish has one strike against him for missing a drugs test. I think that I am right in saying that one more and it's two years suspension. Makes you think.
Les

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Post by George » 15 Jun 2012 00:29

Les Ladbury wrote:Do you remember l'affaire Festina about 10 or 12 years ago.
I do Les. Before it, French cycling was full of dopers. Afterwards, they cleaned their act up. In the years that followed, clean French cyclists won nothing. Armstrong and his cronies won everything. Coincidence?
Les Ladbury wrote:However the point I am making is do you think that Armstrong would get involved in drugs under this scenario ?
In his Tour-winning years, how often did Armstrong race in Europe let alone France in the spring? What was he doing during all those months of preparation in the US and Spain (two countries which, at least then, were way behind France in the rigorousness of their anti-doping activities)? Funny how all Bruyneel's riders are always off the radar in the period before a Tour.
Les Ladbury wrote:2/Your analogy to speeding is rather ridiculous. They are not the same thing at all. If you insist on this taking performance enhancing drugs in the sure knowledge that you will be tested at the end of the event is on a par with driving past a speed camera at 100mph.
I was making the simple point that not getting caught is not the same thing as not being guilty. You speak as though getting caught was inevitable. But there were no tests for things like EPO and blood doping for the first half of Armstrong's Tour career. So, if he was doing 100mph past a speed camera, it was one he was damned sure was pointing the other way. How many doping controls did Ulrich fail? Or Basso? Or Millar? How many times was Virenque tested before they got him? To be a doper, you must have expert advice and support and that extends to masking techniques and all the rest. And, of course, the allegation is that Armstrong did test positive at least once, and hushed it up.
Les Ladbury wrote:Finally you do realise that Mark Cavandish has one strike against him for missing a drugs test. I think that I am right in saying that one more and it's two years suspension. Makes you think.
Yes. I'm not 100% confident that any pro cyclist is clean, if I'm honest. However, I'm >90% confident that Wiggo is. And <10% confident that Armstrong was. My confidence in Cav is a lot closer to the Wiggo percentage than the Armstrong percentage.
A missed test may be due to the rider not wanting to be tested; it may also be due to some entirely innocent cause. I support the principle that test-missers have to be treated like dopers; otherwise dopers would just deliberately miss tests. However, it doesn't follow that, because you punish someone for missing a test, he or she must have been doping.
Besides, you know that Armstrong had a reputation for always being "in the shower" whenever the testers made unannounced visits and keeping them waiting until he was ready?

You are a clever and experienced man, Les. I'm really surprised that you can't see what's staring you in the face.

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George
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Post by George » 15 Jun 2012 00:44

Albert Cox wrote:This thread reminds me of Australian expression 'Tallest poppy syndrome'....
Albert if you think my opinion of Armstrong is simply down to resenting his success and wanting to see him taken down a peg, you are mistaken.

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Post by Johnnyc » 16 Jun 2012 16:38


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AlanW
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Post by AlanW » 16 Jun 2012 17:30

Johnnyc wrote:http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/armstro ... 0&ns_fee=0

The case continues to develop...
More fuel to the ever increasing fire then.

Still.....looking on the bright side, one good thing may come out of it, the Nike Livestrong merchandise will probably reduce in price...... :roll:

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George
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Post by George » 16 Jun 2012 17:47

CW provides a fairly balanced summary of things, I think:

http://www.cyclingweekly.co.uk/news/lat ... t-him.html

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Post by Ed Moss » 16 Jun 2012 19:05

Interesting read and at last they are saying what I've always thought about Livestrong foundation.

Will be very interesting if found guilty and goes to prison, wonder what the Nike marketing department will say then?

I've also often wondered why Lance has never sued Tyler/Landis for libel, after all they have made some very serious allegations?
Maybe because he doesn't want to testify under oath??

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