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Thursday, November 16, 2006

the wierdness of Floyd-gate

I just don't even know what to make of this crap, anymore.

When Armstrong won his first Tour ... it was just so engaging. We felt it in our bones. His rise from the ashes of cancer - our compassion surging from the still images of his chemo-ravaged body. Our pride swelling from the tales of his long hours of training. He overcame. He was reaching for the farthest, dimmest star ... a mad hope to accomplish such a thing.

it was a story that could not come true. could not be true.

Armstrong win the Tour ~ against those odds? impossible.

- - -

And then Landis ... cracking so dramatically, pedaling squares up those final kilometers. He was ... one our own ~ because each of us has felt that same emptiness, that same inability to do anything but trudge and claw to a line. Forcing ourselves to continue, to make it to the end - when all that stopped us from stopping was ~ our will to finish. To finish.

We loved him for it. Hell, the French loved him for it.

And then came The Ride. The single most exhilirating day of sport I've ever witnessed. Gallons of water poured over his scorched, tortured body. Buckets of pain falling through him, cascading. His eyes never wavering, his mind ... driven to one goal. Impossible.

A Tour de France peloton chasing, the finest athletes in the world, knowing exactly what he was doing, every pedalstroke, unable to close the gap.

The modern day cycling classic.

taken away.

- - -

Was there a "chain of custody" error? Yes. Does it invalidate the sample? Yes ... it immediately invalidates the sample. The sample should have never been tested, never been seen as legitimate once the violation of the chain of custody protocol took place.

Was he guilty of doping?

Can we face the answer? Do we care what the answer is if he gets off on a technicality?


Anonymous said...

Mass suckage.

Johnny Sprocket said...

The doper doped and crushed my heart.

Merkeley Bike said...

Sounds to me like we'll never know for sure. Some will always assume he is guilty others will give him the benefit of the doubt.

I am disappointed the French, UCI and WADA decided to try this case in the court of public opinion.

IMHO, if the governing bodies of cycling are going to salvage any credibility they need to apply the same high standards to all parties involved that they apply to the athletes.

shawndoggy said...

I'm sad because we'll never really know, and because Stage 17 was sooooo special. Single greatest ride in the modern era. Doping or not it was badass and I don't for a minute believe he could have doped his way from a bonk to a hail mary. Now poof it's a footnote. Suckage.

le petit lutin said...

Ok, that's it....they all take drugs. Even the frencheeses take drugs, but they might not be taking enough...

One of my all time favorite, Bernard Hinault "le blaireau" who also used drugs (red wine in particular) would have never been able to perform the way he did without a little dope!!!

Ippoc Amic said...

I like this post a lot since it reminds me of the excitement that I felt watching both those tours 99 and 2006...

But the doping: real or technical is just an example of how the sport has crossed the line of fringe vs. mainstream(i.e. money is the driver)

and I do care what the answer is even if he gets off..

p.s. Does it disgust anyone else that the only team out of 20 ProTour teams to sign Basso is the American sponsored team? What exactly is Disco's stand on doping?

le petit lutin said...

Well, now Basso has the same doctors and trainers that Armstrong and Landis used to have.

He'll be too!!!

Chris said...

Well, we failed to take to the streets and riot when Bush stole 2000, (he said, awkwardly dragging unnecessary and unsubstantiated political baggage into a totally different subject) so I sadly doubt any of us have the cojones to rise up and smash the state over a teency weency little sporting event.

Chris said...
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Chris said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Grey said...

Difficult thing is, for me, Landis seems like such a cool guy. Even how he's pursuing his 'open for everyone to judge' self defense on his website is pretty respectable. But the way things are shaking out among the Pro Tour teams, it's hard to see Disco as taking a respectable course, and Floyd went through that system when riding for Lance. So no matter how respectable Floyd seems, to me he appears to be associated with part of the problem.

From a fan's point of view--me as fan in particular--I'm p.o.ed that Floyd is tried in the court of media and public opinion first. Then once our cynical assumptions about high end cycling are confirmed (hey, he tested "positive") we get this drawn out battle where Floyd's just happy to get off on a technicality. Doesn't assuage the cynicism.

I want my heros to be real, and reality is so complicated by explanations of reasons for abnormal testosterone/epitestosterone ratios and the lack of understanding of daily variances of hormone levels, not to mention botched lab protocols. F that. Stage 17 was so simple in comparison and so heroic. Sucks big donkey doo that it had to get complicated.

Simple heroic moment:

Taz said...

I heard Landis is coming out with a book soon.

"If I did dope here are the details"

This world gets crazier by the minute...

My hope is on Zabriske. Please don't dissapoint, I'm sooo tired... His dulcet, humorous, and lovable attitude is hopefully indicative of someone with high morals. Only time will tell...

Eclectchick said...

Good question.

No matter what happens with Landis, his name is sullied forever.

The whole business breaks my heart.

Anonymous said...

I saw an orange Kona (like yours) outside Fox Racing and it looked spit-shined clean. I mean spottless. How could anyone dare keep a cross bike spottless this time of year? something was very wrong.

Brent Chapman said...

Sorry my thoughts now since I can't wrap my hands around it either.

If you believe he doped, then surely more than a few of his competitors are doping too.
If you think all his competitors are clean then he is clean as well...

I will hold it as a classic moment regardless if he is a doper or not. You could still be a doper (who undoubtedly were in that chase group) and not have made that attempt and sat in hoping for a shorter climb or a sprint finish.

I would like the sport to be clean like everyone else, but when you hear about high school kids using steroids for football, water polo, and soccer, it is a pretty good sign attitudes aren't changing fast enough.

MoJito said...

it's kind of like how Lindsey Lohan keeps getting caught in photographs getting in and out of cars without panties. if you know everyone's watching your every move, why do it (go panty-less, of course).

I would think that the gigant-o report that came out on the sketchy-ness of the dope testing lab after the Tyler debacle would demonstrate a lack of credibility on the part of the lab. Why are we still taking the lab's word for it??

McSassy went Beta and it sucks said...

I think the labs are just as dirty if not worse. I mean how else do they constitute all the grant muney unless they catch the big fish.

Also, I think stage 17 was the most bad ass ride EVER irrespective of dope of note, fukin man size fooo shooo.


El Sexy Boy said...

See, that's why I always make sure i come in DFL, for the purity of the sport. No one is gonna assume I'M doping......Alchohal isn't doping is it?

Velo Bella said...

His Kona is on its way to Oregon/Wash for some real mud

thats some Kona spotting by the way. It was only there for a few hours...
and it wasn't that clean....

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