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May 29, 2007

Comments

catherine

You are such an inspiring, sunny person..... well needed after all the posts (what a mistake) I read on other blogs-mostly those wackos on DPF (not all, just some).

Amy

The doping had exactly zero effect on my weekend cycling (50 miles) and running (12 miles.) Dang. What's all the fuss about? However, I am much less itchy and oozy. Sorry. Hope nobody is eating lunch :)

theresa

I had a great ride yesterday!

Last night I watched DWTS! The last two shows, for the finale. WoW! I really enjoyed the show!! Apollo was great, and so was everyone else. Man the British know what they are doing, huh? First AI, and now DWTS, and both shows had trouble finding a network!
And it's so good to see Tom Bergeron, again. I watched him in the early 90's on a Morning show on FX channel. It was a fun show!! Of course, my demographic wasn't what they wanted, and eventually, there was nothing on that channel I wanted to watch!!

susie b

I'm in turmoil over how I feel about PROcycling. On one hand, I too want to stand along the road, hold up my lighter & sing the cycling fans' new theme song -

"When the night falls on you
You don't know what to do
NOTHING YOU CONFESS
Could make me love you less.
I'll stand by you
I'll stand by you..."

On the other hand, I'm the guy from Network - "mad as Hell & not going to take it any more!" And just why are you so angry, susie? Why this personal sense of betrayal?
Well, Dr I.A. -

For almost 25 years, I have watched & loved the pinacle event of this sport - the Tour de France. It was love at 1st sight in 1984. For the next 12 years, I knew no one else in my "real" life who even knew about the sport, let alone liked it, despite my attempts to enlighten them. So, it was just me, CBS Sports, & Sports Illustrated. During that time, I was ridiculed by friends & family that I would not only NOT go on vacation during July, but would sit in the house every Sat & Sun afternoon so I could view the TDF "summary shows" on TV. And then about 10 years ago I found a guy at work who was a cyclist & a big pro-cycling fan. I was SO excited! I had so many stupid questions as there is only so much that those yearly SI articles told you! For the next 7 years, I would start calling the guy in mid-June & hammer him with that year's list - "So, what's the deal with the polkadot shirt? What's 'road furniture'? How do the guys all ride so fast & so close to each other & not crash every 5 ft? Is there a difference between 'bonking & cracking'? etc,etc". And then Lance came along & I read his 1st book, then his 2nd, then books ABOUT Lance & the various TDFs he'd won, & then just books about the Tour de France & pro-cycling in general. Pretty soon, I was conversant in pelontonese!

When my cable company started showing OLN in 2003, that's when my Tour obsession went to a whole new level. I started buying Cycle Sport America & Velonews' special TDF July issues weeks before the event & marked out for which mountain Stages I would take vacation days or at least vacation time in the mornings. Around the same time, I found the cycling websites & during the Tour, I would glance every morning at three different sites' Live written reports & then print it all out to read between 5-7pm while watching that hors d'oeuvre to the Prime Time show; yes, the edited morning coverage. And then last year, the cyclist guy from work tells me about Eurosport's LIVE (in English) radio feed, so I listened to about 6 of the stages through the internet all the while clicking on the various websites' Live written reports AND trying to get my "work" done.

And here's some irony - while descending further & further into my own addiction, (as so pathetically illustrated above :), I defended the sport against doping allegations. The fact that I really didn't know much about the doping (due to my own decision to play ostrich) until this year did not stop me from repeatedly defending the sport. My forte was pointing out all the doping in other sports.

So, Dr I.A. - Am I just an addict, angry & afraid of losing her 'drug'? Or am I just a scorned lover wailing "you lied to meeeeee"? Perhaps I'm just humiliated & now truly know how my younger sister feels, as she went to a Milli Vanilli concert years ago & thought "they" were great & whose friends have never let her live it down....

The fact that the average guy, even connected to an EPO IV drip, could not begin to do what these guys do on a daily basis let alone in the Tour de France, makes me even sadder & angrier. That others use THIS as the reason to shrug at doping is just 'mind-blowing' to me. (I can't resist wordplay - I'm SORRRRRY.)

And I too desperately just want to look beyond all this. But, if we are NOT outraged, NOT disheartened by all these confessions telling us THIS year's version of THE TRUTH, then maybe we are getting the sport we deserve.

strbuk

Sara, you can NEVER give up on cycling, it's too much a metaphor for all of life. Hang in there, not everyone doped, some people ARE telling the truth.

str

Camille

I sure don't know how you got all that to go through with Typepad down almost all day. Good going, Susie! This is just a test... I've lost a post here and one at MD's already...

CMehl

Susie, Susie, Susie, I have figured out what is bringing you down: you don't watch ENOUGH cycling! If your addiction mainly plays out during July (and I AGREE, I watch the TdF around 3 times a day, and here on the west coast I have gotten up as early as 3:30AM to get started!! IV-Caffeine drip for sure) then you need to bulk up on your cycling fixes and watch more throughout the year. You need to see all of the Classics in the bad winter weather for March and April, you need to watch the Giro with the INCREDIBLE Dolomites (watch tomorrow morning--22% grades!!), etc. etc. You are putting too much emphasis on the Tour and it is letting you down. There are lots and lots of cyclists that don't cheat--spend more time reading about them, go to their blogs and websites, buy more cycling magazines, get involved in some local cycling event, etc. There are so many neat cyclists to love and cheer even though the big name are screwing it up for the regular guys.

So much to love--and besides, they are cheating themselves WAY MORE than they are cheating you. Think forgiveness and compassion ;)

And besides, many of these men have such hot asses and thighs that I am pretty sure my life would be way less happy is I stopped watching them parade around in lycra costumes!

Theresa

GO CATHY, GO!! I was trying to tell Susie that once before, but didn't put it near as well!!! My favorite, DO NOT MISS race, is Paris-Robiaux!! I'm totally in awe of the cyclist who do the spring classics!! Maybe one day, I even learn how to spell "Robiaux"?!!!! And following Brad, has me HOT, to go to the one and only velodrome in MO to watch track racing!! Now, I have books on track racing. It started with the Tour, but I wanted more! It started with Lance; but now he's "no big deal" because he's not cycling! Which reminds me, I saw a picture of him with the chick he's dating, and she looks so much like Sheryl, it's spooky, who looked so much like St.Kristin, it makes all the more spookier!!
Reading VeloNews and watching two dvds, "The Hard Road" and "PRO" about domestic cycling, got me all excited about that!! Then Brad came along!! I know doping was going on, and I'm glad they are 'fessing up, and I still love 'em!!
Susie, I think you are a scorned lover! And you'll get over it! The Giro is really cool, and more fun for the cyclists, because there isn't as much pressure! And Dave Z. is doing really well in the GC!

This is the first year since I've been watching the Tour, that I don't have the last week of the Tour off on vacation. It's going to be Floyd's hearing all over again! Totally sleep deprived and cranky! BUT I,m going to the US National Criterium championships in Aug, to watch Brad defend his title! And this year I think it's going to be Americans only; I think that's what I saw. My first LIVE RACE!!!

catherine

Ms T, didja ever notice how much they ALL look like his mother?

catherine

susieb, listen to auntie Cathy, she's right, it's the only 'cure' for you. Or maybe, maybe you should just sleep with one of them. Yeah, that's the ticket, have an affair, become a REAL cycling groupie! Even better, pick one that doesn't speak english, only some language you don't speak. Much more fun to speak the language of LUV, baby.

theresa

OMG, Catherine!! I didn't even think of Lance's mom!! Good point....hmmmm, maybe Dr.IA should take this one on too!! Now that we have Susie figured out!!

Camille

Hi everyone... I've been really busy getting Claire lined up to ride off to Alaska Friday morning. Today she's getting to do something really cool. I just put her on an early morning flight to Memphis... she was chosen by the Texas 4000 team founder to be one of two riders to go visit a little 3 year old boy who is a cancer patient at St. Jude's Hospital in Memphis. So Claire and the team director are going to go see this little boy today who is the team "mascot" this year, and she's bringing him a copy of the book The Little Engine That Could. They fly back here tonight and then Friday morning... off to Alaska! (I get to join her the 2nd day for a 70 mile ride (but I'm sure I'll hit the sag wagon LONG before the end -- will hang in there as long as I can). So it's an exciting week around here. My husband and I are both feeling half and half that we are partly HORRIFIED she'll be doing this (worried about 18 wheelers going 95 MPH), and on the other hand we feel like, "Hey, I WANNA GO TOO!" Anyway... I may continue to be mostly quiet through about Monday or so (lots of houseguests until then).

Strbuk, I continue to be amazed by your work at TBV. I wonder if you find all your sources online or if you camp out at a local magazine stand? :) Anyway, two big thumbs up!
The waiting for the decision isn't going to be fun. I'm having to try and think about other things so the time will pass faster.

Happy day to all!

Matt

Hello and welcome to the end of May everybody! Didn't get a chance to post yesterday, was QUITE busy! Anyway, had a nice holiday weekend up in Monterey/Carmel CA area with my wife! We don't get to do this type of thing very often, so it was a very welcome diversion to all that’s been happening. And I will say that EVERYBODY should take the drive from Monterey south on Hwy 1 sometime in their lives...AWESOME is all I can say! Hard to believe it's only a few hours north of me, and I hadn't ever done it before! And I didn't get a SINGLE bike ride in all weekend, and I’m ok with that!

OK..back to the real world! I've had something in particular on my mind since the hearing and thought I'd toss it out here.... When they had the lab technicians on the stand (and at least one of them finally admited to knowing WHOSE sample she was testing), I really wish it had been then asked "And how did you know whose sample it was?"....it HAD to be someone at WADA who gave them the info...as THEY are the only ones who SHOULD HAVE HAD it!
All the lab gets is samples and numbers...any adverse findings and they report to WADA with the sample number. SO...someone at WADA wanted the lab to have that VITAL piece of info. How can ANY athlete expect a fair and impartial testing procedure if the lab knows whose it is...which makes it subject to manipulation/hanky panky...(which is what APPEARS happened to Floyds samples). No matter what happens with the hearing outcome, I sure wish someone IMPORTANT would snatch up Dick Pound by the shirt collar and ask him "What in the wild wild world of sports is going on under your watch?
Your labs are screwing up, and YOU appear to condone it! Get off you’re a#$ and get your stuff in order!" (or something like that...or maybe even "YOU'RE FIRED" would be ok too!) I also would like to find out WHO at LNDD leaked the results to the press! Too bad that wasn't followed up on..but I realize they (Floyds legal team) were under time constraints and were following a pre-outlined attack/defense...and this stuff is all just peripheral to his case.

And just like that, it's WEDNESDAY already! Get out there and RIDE! (I will..tonight!)

theresa

Yes, Matt, I agree someone needs to find out who the leak is to L'Equipe and the lab. Might be real interesting to find out who! And if "they" don't do something about the LNDD, the teams and riders might be just a little uncomfortable about them doing the tests for the Daphne and the Tour!!

I was going to ride to the Dentist's office today....but it's raining AGAIN!!! Anyone need some rain? You can have some of ours!!

Matt

Boy, we'd LOVE to have some of your rain...we didn't get hardly ANY this 'rainy season' (Dec thru March)...it's gonna be a banner fire year I"m afraid...and thats just US up here in the central coast...inland and south are really gonna be brown (they already ARE, and it's only the end of may!) I'm betting the firefighters are gearing up to be VERY BUSY this year!

theresa

It's definitely a trade-off! This wuss doesn't ride in the rain, so I want some sun!! But, droughts aren't any fun either!!

Andy Schleck is burning up the mountains at the Giro!! He's second behind DeLuca now!!! They are saying he's going to be a bigger talent than his brother Frank!!!!

Janann

Hi all! Good post Sara! Loved it -- there are so many reasons :)

Theresa -- we need some of your rain, too! I've NEVER experienced a drier May, although I'm sure we're doing much better than Matt. That sounds like a conflagration waiting to happen.

I agree that the riders should be VERY skeptical about having their tests run at LNDD after everything that came out at the hearing! Hope some of them followed that and are aware of the possibilities. I would DEFINITELY not be comfortable with ANY of my tests being done there (not that they have much of a choice at this point).

Congrats Pommi! I'm VERY impressed! I'm still working on getting up to about a quarter for myself this year :)

Good advice Cathy (and loved your 'rant for help' Susie)! I used to really only follow the Tour, but have greatly enjoyed taking in the other races over the past couple of years. Not that I won't be EAGERLY anticipating the start of THE Tour -- seems to be starting pretty late this year.

Matt

I'd ride in the rain but my BIKE won't let me! It's afraid of water! (GRIN!!) I have been out in some horrid conditons on the mt bike though...but that was a few years back..pretty much I'm a fair weather biker anymore. I'm NOT a racer, and if I'm not having fun, then whats the point...and being WET and COLD isn't very fun in my book.

Good on Andy...up and coming new talent to watch for! He has big shoes to fill from his big brother Frank though!

Yvette

I'm with you on that Matt--I'm not a big fan of riding in the rain. We've had some crazy weather here (it snowed yesterday) but today was gloriously sunny, the lilacs are in bloom and fragrant, and I had a fantastic ride. Rides like that cure any "blues" I may ever have...

Go Clare! Go Camille! I look forward to hearing updates on Clare's trip, and hope you have a lot of fun this weekend on your ride with her. How many moms can ride with their college-aged daughters? It wasn't that way in my family, so I think that's really great for you to share a little in her epic journey...

susie b

Thanks Cathy, Theresa, catherine & Janann! And of course, Sara's own post helped. It's kind of funny that I didn't even start out writing that comment yesterday but I twice lost everything I wrote on typepad & by the 3RD time I was blowin' smoke! LOL! I DO have very mixed thoughts & feelings about PROcycling at the moment & I think I actually need to cut BACK my viewing for now. The reason I say this is that when watching the Giro on Sunday, I could NOT STOP wondering 'who's using , what are they using, when did they stop using, when will they start using again'? It ruined it for me & yet I could not stop. I'm hoping I'll be able to get past this or my love affair with the TDF is in jeopardy! :(

What do you all think about Zabel being allowed to ride as usual for the rest of this year? I just can't decide. Yes, the admitted doping was 11 YEARS ago, but shouldn't he get SOME punishment? What really pushes me over the edge is when I read these people who dump all over Floyd & yet EMBRACE Zabel, Aldag, Riis, etc as freakin saints because they "had the courage (arghhhhh, remember my rant over Basso?) to confess. I do NOT get that AT ALL! And then that idiot at the ASO said there should be two levels of punishment - 2 years for those who "confess" & lifetime ban for those who test "dirty". That is STUPID! None of those riders came forward out of the desire to "clean up the sport"! They confessed because too much evidence was coming out & they were trying to save themselves! If you believe Floyd doped, then how is it different?

Now see, I'm getting all upset again.

What I tried to post yesterday was that I am re-reading Sara's May posts & comments & I realized that even though I apparently "wrote" some comments in my head, I failed to write them up here, much to my chagrin! So, sorry this is late but... Thanks SO much to woofdawg, GregC, & Matt for answering my questions about what Marty should do to train for the L'etape. And did you see today he really hasn't started hardcore training yet?!! Amy, I keep saying "You GO GIRL!" in my head whenever I read about your exploits but I always seem to get distracted before I write it up! You make even MD seem a slacker! Cathy, thanks for the Pedal Pep Talk & I'm sorry I failed to chime in earlier that I too, am hoping the best for your husband. I think about him & now Fatty's wife (of FatCyclist fame) everyday. And, I do agree that looking at a bunch of fine-assed men is usually just the tonic I need to put me in a good mood! :) And Camille, I'll be thinking about your daughter from now til she's home safe! I hope she has the experience of a lifetime!

I still haven't finished re-reading. I'm up to the day we had 86 (!) comments. So, there may be some more belated comments tomorrow!

And just so I don't get further behind, Matt - I think they should threaten to FIRE everyone at LNDD that was even loosely connected (e.g. they saw the results before the UCI was notified) with Floyd's test. How else to get this to stop? With their jobs on the line, I bet people start talking & the mole is revealed. Put Inspector Clousseau on the case! :)

CMehl

Why Susie, I can tell from the tone of your post you are actually already feeling better about things in general!!!

Ya know, I think Zabel is such a good guy that people are willing to forgive him! I think it's as basic as that, people just love him. I don't think being fair even occurs to people anymore...they just react immediately now to the next bad thing in cycling! Knee-jerk reactions I guess.

Did anyone watch the Giro stage today? Oh lordy it was a sight to see-that gorgeous Gilberto Simoni flying up that amazing climb. Wow. Has anyone but me noticed how the front of the Saunier-Duval shorts have a graphic on them that makes it look like a little "weeny" drawn there? Oh my.

I have a nice interview with Tom Danielson coming out in the next couple of days and wait til you read how much he loves and appreciates his wife. And today I had to re-interview Eki because I screwed up the first time. I've interviewed him alot so I fessed up and we did it over. But when we started talking he kept asking if I had turned on the tape recorder!! Good thing he knows me so I didn't die of embarrassment!

susie b

Hey Matt - when I was a kid, I was FIXATED on both Carmel & the giant Redwoods of California! I saw pictures of both in books & then in the movies when I was about 6 & I wanted to go there SO bad! Most kids I knew wanted to visit Calif to see Disneyland. Not me! I wanted to see Carmel! (Well, ok, I wanted to visit Mickey & the gang too!) For years, I did insist to every adult around that I would live in Carmel "when I grew up". For a farm girl of western Md during the 60s & 70s, it was about the same as saying I was going to live on the moon one day. :) And then when I was around 18, I developed this weird overwhelming fear of earthquakes! I've never lived through one but it became this huge thing & I even refused to visit some friends who lived there because I was convinced the second I put my foot down on the tarmac, the Big One would hit! I still haven't visited Calif., not due to fear (that's gone), just haven't got there yet! But, erh, in case I too, am some sort of enviromental disturbance when away from my natural habitat, I'll give you, Greg, Cathy & all our other Pacific rimmers a warning before I'm on the way...!

Come to think of it, I went to England & France for the 1st time 3 years ago & for the 12 days I was in England, the weather was great! Especially in London! I was there 5 days & it only rained a little one night after 10:00pm. I even had to wear sunblock to walk around London! It was fabulous! Then, the day after I left to go to France, it rained in London every day for a week!

Theresa

I agree with Cathy. Come on, 11years? Do you really think they need to be punished? I did stuff 11 yrs ago, that I've paid the price for more than once, and the world doesn't know. All those guys expected to lose their jobs, and Milram was thinking about suspend Erik; BUT it was 11yrs ago!! To listen to some people talk, you'd think they committed a murder. I read that Coppi even admitted to using amphetamines when "he needed them". They smoked and drank in the early years of cycling! How long does someone have to pay for their sins?? I read Fatty's post on Lance, and it was pretty good. Let's remember these guys are human, and they ARE helping to change the culture!

And Susie, while you are getting all caught up on posts you forgot to post, How about that Brad HUFF?!! Star of the future!! I may have to email Jonathan Vaughters to make sure the boy is riding the Tour here in his own state!!

Janann

oooh, Susie, you have GOT to go visit the Redwoods in CA! A very surreal and humbling experience - one of my favorite trips! Though I did keep waiting for the 'Ewoks' to jump out from behind those trees :)

Theresa, I seriously think that Brad's team should hire you to do some publicity! But then again, they don't need to pay you because you will do it anyway ;)

Cathy - LOL - I had a "what the heck is that?!?!?!" reaction when I first saw those Saunier-Duval kits. Wonder who came up with that design for the shorts.

I think that there really does have to be a limit on how far back we can go to punish cyclists who have doped. You're definitely right, Susie, that they didn't come forward for the good of the sport -- they were trying to fess up before they were exposed by a third party. And, yes, it DOES make me angry that some people talk about how they are brave these cyclists are for confessing, while at the same time many are all over Floyd because he doesn't "come clean". Still...11 years is a long time ago and we have to hope that members of the peloton are learning from the past at this point. I'm optimistic anyway. Don't you wish that we could be privy to conversations taking place amid the peloton these days: doping, confessions, Floyd's hearing, LNDD credibility, OP suspensions, etc??

GO GO GO CLAIRE!
(Hearing the music from Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat in my head!)

Janann

Hey!
I thought that this was a well-written and very interesting article about offering some type of amnesty for cyclists who are willing to come forward regarding past doping. What do you guys think about that?
http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/asection/la-oe-brady30may30,1,5265044.story?coll=la-news-a_section
"But Tour de France Director Christian Prudhomme has called for anyone who admits doping to be banned. Confessing in exchange for unemployment isn't much of an incentive."

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