Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby MichaelB » Mon May 28, 2018 9:18 am

Had to look up F&O's "Cheese eating surrender monkeys" - hmmmmm.

Is there a version of that to be applied to Sky ?

I think there is a huge problem brewing with the legal right that he has to keep racing and the time taken to get a decision. The fact he's claiming a "clean conscience" is just absurd and makes even more of a mockery of the whole saga.

I wonder if, whether it's not resolved by the time of the TdF, whether ASO will have something to say ?

Meh, it'll actually dull some of my interest in watching the TdF and the Criterium leading up to it.

This Velonews article had a line that summed it all up very well for me,

Today’s sceptical, scandal-weary fans feel that the cycling world has just duped them again. It’s nearly impossible to look at what’s happening in today’s peloton without peering through the lens of 20-plus years of doping scandals.


Meh, Go Richie !!!

And what a great race for Dan to win !!! :mrgreen:

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby vosadrian » Mon May 28, 2018 9:38 am

If we took the adverse drug findings out of the picture would you guys actually feel any different about this result? I think you guys just don't like him and are using that as a way to justify your views. I don't think the conversation here would be that different if there was no drug findings. Previously discussions here have looked for every reason to have a go at Sky.

End of the day, the Giro had some great racing. Yates was exciting to watch until he imploded. Then Froome pulls off a solo long range attack that will be talked about for decades. It was exciting to watch and great racing. Dumoulin performed as well as his abilities would allow but was undone by a better climber and better team tactics. It is a shame he did not hold another 45 seconds on the big stage.

Froome is not popular for a variety of reasons, but one of them used to be that he was just captain of the strongest team that was the best funded. The team applied a tactic that was difficult to beat and the captain just needed to TT well and hang in for the climbs. You couldn't accuse him of that after his last few GTs and particularly his effort to gain 3+ minutes in this one. He is a genuine well rounded GT rider who has skills in TT, climbing, descending and race tactics to take the right opportunities.

I was barracking for Chaves at the beginning. Would have been great to see the Aussie team get a GC win. Then I switched to Yates to the same end. At the end I would have been happy for Dumoulin or Froome to win, but I think the way Froome did it was more impressive than Dumoulin's tactics, so was happy for the way it went down.
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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby AndyRevill » Mon May 28, 2018 10:39 am

I'm definitely in the sceptical camp, it's hard not to be these days but there are a few things that irk me about the whole response.
Salbutamol isn't rocket fuel, as Velonews said, on it's own it's not going to let someone win a GT. Yes he was found to have 1.4x the allowed limit but the hysteria is a bit over the top unless you apply it equally. His results were leaked before having the chance to defend himself so if he's under a cloud, how many others? it's use is widespread and trying to apply a dose-response curve to any medication/metabolite is fraught with problems within a human population, which is why there's a process, but there may be dozens of riders with the same issue, we just don't know - should we know?
Coming back to his 80km blitz, on the surface it's hard to take at face value but how much of it was due to the fact he attacked just at the right point, no-one seemed to want to chase except TD and he, by his own admission, chose completely the wrong ally. So, I'm undecided on how much time he took vs how much they let him but if it is through nefarious means then he'll need to test positive for something more juicier than salbutamol?
Either way it will keep Twitter sphere happy for a while yet
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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Mon May 28, 2018 12:07 pm

AndyRevill wrote:but there may be dozens of riders with the same issue, we just don't know - should we know?

That's just it. There are not and haven't been a whole heap of such cases. If the threshold limit really is too low we should expect to have seen big numbers with AAFs leading to doping sanctions. But we haven't.

But due process is what it is and the rules as they stand permit him to ride. Just as the same rules mean the result may well be nullified later in the year. And that's the big problem - if a key GC rider should not have started in the first place, the entire way the race unfolded can't be undone.

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby Thoglette » Mon May 28, 2018 12:18 pm

Thoglette wrote:I just can't get Floyd Landis 2006 out my head

Apparently I'm not alone
Andrew Hood wrote:Instead, his profligate Giro stampede only hastened everyone to draw a line straight from Bardonecchia to Morzine, a ski town just over the French border where Floyd Landis upended the 2006 Tour de France.
on Velonews
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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby AndyRevill » Mon May 28, 2018 1:23 pm

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:
AndyRevill wrote:but there may be dozens of riders with the same issue, we just don't know - should we know?

That's just it. There are not and haven't been a whole heap of such cases. If the threshold limit really is too low we should expect to have seen big numbers with AAFs leading to doping sanctions. But we haven't.


Serious question because I'm interested, If someone returned a high reading but was able to show that under certain race conditions their urine levels exceeded the permissible amount (the same as Froome is trying to do now), would we know they had returned a high reading? my limited understanding is we wouldn't because it's kept confidential?

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby fat and old » Mon May 28, 2018 3:41 pm

MichaelB wrote:Had to look up F&O's "Cheese eating surrender monkeys" - hmmmmm.

Is there a version of that to be applied to Sky ?



UK Postal?

It's kinda hard now that Sky are so multicultural and all. Their best rider is Kenyan. :lol: To be honest, I'm surprised that the poms actually don't hold him up as some sort of testament of the power of the Empire, sorta like a skinny, white african James Bond....

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby fat and old » Mon May 28, 2018 3:55 pm

vosadrian wrote:If we took the adverse drug findings out of the picture would you guys actually feel any different about this result? I think you guys just don't like him and are using that as a way to justify your views. I don't think the conversation here would be that different if there was no drug findings. Previously discussions here have looked for every reason to have a go at Sky.



No. I've been suss on him since the 2011 Vuelta. Moreso on Cobo tbh :lol:

End of the day, the Giro had some great racing. Yates was exciting to watch until he imploded. Then Froome pulls off a solo long range attack that will be talked about for decades. It was exciting to watch and great racing. Dumoulin performed as well as his abilities would allow but was undone by a better climber and better team tactics. It is a shame he did not hold another 45 seconds on the big stage.



Absolutely agree. I reckon Froomay's ride was brilliant. No less so than any of the greats before him. I have no real issues with him winning tbh....I actually assume that anyone as dominant as he is is an extraordinary talent. Drug fuelled probably, but still amazing. And since his descent on Stg. 8 of the 2016 TDF I think he's been injecting some excitement that would be lauded even more if it was by another rider. He's definitely more enjoyable to watch these days than Quintana for instance. And I still believe he gifted the Angliru stage of the Vuelta to Contador in 2017 out of respect, and that gets him some credit from me.

But he looks so bloody awkward riding his bike :lol:

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Mon May 28, 2018 4:11 pm

AndyRevill wrote:
Alex Simmons/RST wrote:
AndyRevill wrote:but there may be dozens of riders with the same issue, we just don't know - should we know?

That's just it. There are not and haven't been a whole heap of such cases. If the threshold limit really is too low we should expect to have seen big numbers with AAFs leading to doping sanctions. But we haven't.


Serious question because I'm interested, If someone returned a high reading but was able to show that under certain race conditions their urine levels exceeded the permissible amount (the same as Froome is trying to do now), would we know they had returned a high reading? my limited understanding is we wouldn't because it's kept confidential?

Cheers, Andy


It is supposed to remain in confidence unless a sanction is applied or an appeal to CAS (hard to keep that confidential). If threshold has been exceeded then the onus is on the athlete to demonstrate via pharmakinetic study why a sanction should not be applied. Previous appeals for lower levels have failed. Generic studies are inadequate. We already have precedent.

The obvious examples are Petacchi (1320 ng/l) and Ulissi (1900 ng/l). Both received sanctions. Froome's level was higher than both.

Aside from these three, there have been ~10 pro riders sanctioned for salbutamol in the WADA era. Several prior to that era as well when things were less strict.

If there were so many cases of legitimate use resulting in exceeding the already very generous threshold, then WADA would have been revising the threshold by now, or at least have notified it as being added to the forward monitoring list of substances it releases each October along with the updates to the prohibited list.

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby Trev Campbell » Mon May 28, 2018 4:55 pm

I'm sure I'm just like most people here, who love cycling and sport in general. You watch it to see great feats of human sporting ability. Unfortunately due to the sins of the past I think we have all become jaded as to what you are witnessing.

Until he is found guilty we have to assume he is clean. But with the benefit of hind sight it makes it incredibly difficult.

The last guy who dominated GC riding, Never produced a positive drug test, but was doped to the eyeballs.

The last guy who's 'conscience was clear' , Never produced a positive drug test, sued anyone who dared question him, but was doped to the eyeballs.

The last guy to do a super long solo breakaway to take the lead of a GT after looking pretty average, was doped to the eyeballs.

So when something looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, it usually turns out to be a duck.

It's just terribly sad for cycling that whenever anyone wins the immediate thought is 'I wonder what he's on'.
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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby AUbicycles » Mon May 28, 2018 6:14 pm

@vos liking or not liking a rider is different from a rider who is a doper or has allegations (positive A and B sample).

I was not a Froome fan but still couldn’t argue about his participation. Until the news was publicised, he was just a leading rider and although there was speculation, without hard evidence he is just like any other rider and I can’t put his participation into question.

Now I can and right now feel that the rules are not helping the sport.

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby vosadrian » Mon May 28, 2018 7:20 pm

My point was just that everyone thought it was a great Giro until Froome took the lead. Everyone questions the doping allegations because of the adverse finding. If he was not under that cloud, I don't think the conversation would be that different. People would accuse him of doping anyway, and be just as dissatisfied with the result. I think there is a dislike of Sky/Froome that overshadows the doping stuff, but we are concentrating on the doping stuff because it gives an easy way to have a go at him. People used to have a go at the Sky tactics with lots of good riders to keep the pressure so nobody could attack, but that was not the case this time. In fact Froome has done much to address the accusations of his boring racing tactics and as a result his racing is quite exciting.

I agree that the rules are not great. It should not be possible for riders to ride under a cloud. I think an immediate judgement is necessary... and that may necessitate a relaxing of some test levels so that it is not possible to accidentally go over the limit which is what causes this adverse thing in the first place. But I don't blame Froome for the rules. If I thought I was innocent, I would race until proven guilty also. I think the idea that he should sacrifice himself for the good of cycling is very noble, but completely unrealistic.... especially when this all should have been confidential anyway so it is not his fault that everyone knows in the first place. He is a rider in the prime of his career who thinks he is innocent. As if he is going to give up 6 months of a 5 year bracket when he is at his peak.
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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby Thoglette » Mon May 28, 2018 10:32 pm

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:It is supposed to remain in confidence unless a sanction is applied or an appeal to CAS

Yet the labs leak like sieves. When they supposedly don't know who's sample it is.

Ah, at least compared to FIFA ......
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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby DavidS » Tue May 29, 2018 12:09 am

My problem is that some riders (yes, Froome) win multiple GTs in a row, year after year, against the best in the world. Cadel Evans took years to win one, Contador (hardly without suspicion) won a few but not so many in a row.

Add to that the last person to win many in a row . . . , and the one before that.

Then add to this the fact that his whole team, yep, even the humble domestiques, seem to be able to keep up with the best in the world stage after stage.

Now Froome attacks 80km from the finish of a stage and holds everyone off to make up enough time to win the Giro. Great racing, yes, but how is he able to do this and the best in the world can't catch him?

Seen to much over the years not to be suss, unfortunate, but that's the way it is. In the Velonews article there is a line that states: "Every miracle in cycling has proven to be a sham." Sadly this is too true.

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby AUbicycles » Tue May 29, 2018 2:34 am

@vos We have the benefit of knowing what happened during and after his previous major wins and yes, it was different.

It is true that some media and observers were still speculating how a rider of his calibre was able to suddenly escalate himself into a GC rider (comparing past performance) but there was also discontent with the dominant Team Sky where a lot of fans wanted to see more competition (whinging yes... but thoughts I share because I also enjoy more competition)... it is like supporting the underdog.

If Froome was all clear and there were no positive tests, I would have been amazed but my heart would be with Dumoulin and Yates.

Yes, it was a great Giro until his breakaway because he wasn’t in contention. The joy of being awarded a major tour victory months after it has finished (for other racers) without the appropriate podium celebration is empty and this is why this race immediately felt empty for me because we have been through that before.

As I said before, a sportperson who believed in fair racing would gave conceeded and first clarified.

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby fat and old » Tue May 29, 2018 6:47 am

Thoglette wrote:
Alex Simmons/RST wrote:It is supposed to remain in confidence unless a sanction is applied or an appeal to CAS

Yet the labs leak like sieves. When they supposedly don't know who's sample it is.

Ah, at least compared to FIFA ......


FIFA? The Spanish authorities did everything possible to stop the Puerto blood bags from being ID'd. Yeah, soccer.

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby find_bruce » Tue May 29, 2018 7:32 am

Thought Sean Kelly got it right : "What do you think of the ride Chris Froome has done today?" - "Unbelievable"

If you like your analysis more detailed, Phillippa York has a good article that mostly accords with my views Chris Froome and trying to understand the unbelievable

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby Chuck » Tue May 29, 2018 8:46 am

vosadrian wrote:If we took the adverse drug findings out of the picture would you guys actually feel any different about this result? I think you guys just don't like him and are using that as a way to justify your views. I don't think the conversation here would be that different if there was no drug findings. Previously discussions here have looked for every reason to have a go at Sky.

End of the day, the Giro had some great racing. Yates was exciting to watch until he imploded. Then Froome pulls off a solo long range attack that will be talked about for decades. It was exciting to watch and great racing. Dumoulin performed as well as his abilities would allow but was undone by a better climber and better team tactics. It is a shame he did not hold another 45 seconds on the big stage.

Froome is not popular for a variety of reasons, but one of them used to be that he was just captain of the strongest team that was the best funded. The team applied a tactic that was difficult to beat and the captain just needed to TT well and hang in for the climbs. You couldn't accuse him of that after his last few GTs and particularly his effort to gain 3+ minutes in this one. He is a genuine well rounded GT rider who has skills in TT, climbing, descending and race tactics to take the right opportunities.

I was barracking for Chaves at the beginning. Would have been great to see the Aussie team get a GC win. Then I switched to Yates to the same end. At the end I would have been happy for Dumoulin or Froome to win, but I think the way Froome did it was more impressive than Dumoulin's tactics, so was happy for the way it went down.


The other side of that is what people who do like him/them are prepared to overlook about Sky and Froome. It wasn't the public or the press who made the big public announcements that Sky would be beyond reproach, absolutely transparent, the cleanest of the clean when the team first started. Heck they fell just short of declaring themselves the saviours of the sport. And guess what happens when they come out and say that stuff ? People (fans and the press) hold them to account and to say that Sky have fallen short of the standards they set for themselves would be a massive understatement.

Re Froome and salbutamol, those who want to believe in him keep saying that it was only being used to open his airways but choose to overlook the information that came to light that it can be used to strip weight while not losing power similar to clenbuterol. Do you think that that might be useful to a GC rider at a grand tour ?

This is just my opinion but when that came to light I thought that the cat was out of the bag but surprisingly to me Sky still have a lot of defenders out there.
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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby vosadrian » Tue May 29, 2018 10:51 am

I am not a Sky defender. I was as frustrated by their tactics as the rest of you. The drug thing... well I don't know. I am not an expert. What I saw on stage 19 was that Froome went all in. He never questioned what he was going to do, and that meant every decision he made was to get to the end as quickly as possible solo. Dumoulin had to make decisions. Being down about 45 seconds on the first climb was to be expected. But for that to grow to 3 minutes before the final climb was down to decisions he made. If he had been committed to catch him solo and not wait for others and not try to work with others, he would have got there quicker. Maybe he lost a minute on the final climb but dis the descent and flats at similar pace to Froome. He did not lose much time to Froome on the climbs. He lost it on the descents and flats.... which are his speciality and if it was man vs man it would have been closer.

If froome had climbed the last climb quicker than anyone else after the effort to get there, Drugs would have been a good question to ask, but I didn't see it that way. What I saw was a rider who performed poorly early in the tour as had trained to peak later... not that different to Dumoulin. It was no surprise that the guys who trained to peak at the start (and rode aggressively from the start) were dropping like flys while the guys that were peaking were on another level. Even when Froome won the Zoncolan, it was clear that Yates could have had he chased earlier if Froome had been a threat to him at that time. Another few hundred metres and it would have been Yates stage.

I see you guys don't like Froome. You now have a confirmed reason since you have always thought he was on something... but the Giro was a great race to watch and to say it wasn't because your favourite rider didn't end up winning is a bit childish. It wouldn't be a great GT if things did get shaken up in the last week.
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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby MichaelB » Tue May 29, 2018 11:08 am

find_bruce wrote:Thought Sean Kelly got it right : "What do you think of the ride Chris Froome has done today?" - "Unbelievable"

If you like your analysis more detailed, Phillippa York has a good article that mostly accords with my views Chris Froome and trying to understand the unbelievable


Beat me too it. I class Froome as someone I don’t like, and that’s on a variety of factors, but the St19 ride was frankly just a bid odd. Add this onto the other Sky stuff, Brailsford, wiggins (now there are two tools that I really don’t trust at all) and their absolute lack of transparency.

Froome is good and has been a very good rider, but there are a few too many questions.

But yes, until St19, the Giro delivered on all fronts.

I think TD will have his 2nd Giro soon. Just hope it’s sooner rather than later.

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby find_bruce » Tue May 29, 2018 11:12 am

vosadrian wrote:I see you guys don't like Froome. You now have a confirmed reason since you have always thought he was on something... but the Giro was a great race to watch and to say it wasn't because your favourite rider didn't end up winning is a bit childish. It wouldn't be a great GT if things did get shaken up in the last week.

That's your narrative not mine or others & does not reflect the discussion above. Yes some people don't like Froome, but to label every non-believer as childish is fallacious.

Have you actually read the Phillipa York article I linked to which sets out cogent arguments why his performance was not credible - it is not just stage 19 but his performance, including the notably poor performance during some stages. A 3 week grand tour is not a recovery ride.

If you want to believe, whether in the easter bunny, miracle cycling performances or imaginary friends, that's cool - I am not going to rain on your parade, but don't attribute malice to others to suit your own story

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby vosadrian » Tue May 29, 2018 12:05 pm

find_bruce wrote:
vosadrian wrote:I see you guys don't like Froome. You now have a confirmed reason since you have always thought he was on something... but the Giro was a great race to watch and to say it wasn't because your favourite rider didn't end up winning is a bit childish. It wouldn't be a great GT if things did get shaken up in the last week.

That's your narrative not mine or others & does not reflect the discussion above. Yes some people don't like Froome, but to label every non-believer as childish is fallacious.

Have you actually read the Phillipa York article I linked to which sets out cogent arguments why his performance was not credible - it is not just stage 19 but his performance, including the notably poor performance during some stages. A 3 week grand tour is not a recovery ride.

If you want to believe, whether in the easter bunny, miracle cycling performances or imaginary friends, that's cool - I am not going to rain on your parade, but don't attribute malice to others to suit your own story


I didn't read it before but I just did. It didn't find much sway with me. It makes an assumption that you can't ride into form that does not seem to ring true to me. Surely if you arrive at a tour in form but more fatigued the chances of a week 3 collapse are higher than if you are fresh but not on form? Then the article says it does not know how it happened. What is the sub text... he took a power up pill before stage 19? He has an identical twin brother that started riding at stage 19? We all saw it happen... it happened. How can drugs form a part of that question? Was he on drugs before the strong ride, but acted like he was off form beforehand? Did he start taking some new wonder drug that day?

I don't think there was much difference in form between Dumoulin and Froome. Froome got just over 3 minutes on him in 3 hours riding. Dumoulin got little help from the other riders with him, and any help they provided was outweighed by time they lost him elsewhere.
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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby find_bruce » Tue May 29, 2018 12:55 pm

vosadrian wrote:I didn't read it before but I just did. It didn't find much sway with me.

Believe what you want to believe - my objection was to your attempt to label everyone who doesn't as hating Froome & childish.

My own perceptions are coloured by the fact that I have been watching grand tours since the early 90s. In that time every "miraculous recovery" was the result of using performance enhancing drugs. While Landis is the eminent example, Hamilton & his broken collarbone, every Tour in which Ulrich started out fresh but out of form & "rode" himself into contention, Vinokourov losing 3 minutes in stage 9 & recovering (via blood doping) to win the time trial & put himself back in contention.

To me the Giro was like watching a magic show - you don't know how the trick was done, but you do know all is not as it seems.

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby fat and old » Tue May 29, 2018 1:28 pm

vosadrian wrote:Was he on drugs before the strong ride, but acted like he was off form beforehand? Did he start taking some new wonder drug that day?


To be honest, both of those have happened before. Armstrong foxing Ullrich in the TDF just before taking off on a MTF (can't remember the year, but it was the Alpe D'huez stage), and Gewiss in '94 being the first to show EPO dominance in Fleche Wallone. Bjarne Riis riding back and forth up Hautacom in '96.

Who knows what can be done by an educated team or rider?

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Re: Giro 2018 - cracker event again ?

Postby vosadrian » Tue May 29, 2018 1:30 pm

find_bruce wrote:
vosadrian wrote:I didn't read it before but I just did. It didn't find much sway with me.

Believe what you want to believe - my objection was to your attempt to label everyone who doesn't as hating Froome & childish.

My own perceptions are coloured by the fact that I have been watching grand tours since the early 90s. In that time every "miraculous recovery" was the result of using performance enhancing drugs. While Landis is the eminent example, Hamilton & his broken collarbone, every Tour in which Ulrich started out fresh but out of form & "rode" himself into contention, Vinokourov losing 3 minutes in stage 9 & recovering (via blood doping) to win the time trial & put himself back in contention.

To me the Giro was like watching a magic show - you don't know how the trick was done, but you do know all is not as it seems.


I like that magic trick analogy. I can see why you feel the way you feel. It is a reasonable view to have given the previous experiences. I personally am not convinced by the argument that there is no explanation so it can't be.

Does everyone here think that stage 19 was super human in the effort and that Froome was on another level compared to Dumoulin? If Dumoulin had known the way the tactics had played out and ridden the 80kms like he rides a TT with a measured effort rather than trying to work with others do you think the gap would have been less? Is a gain of 3 minutes over 80kms/2.5 hours really otherworldly unbelievable when it is common for good TT riders to pull several minutes over other top GC riders over 40k?

Anyway, we all believe what we believe. I am not a Froome fan boy. I actually liked all the contenders this year and would be happy for any of them to win. I was expecting a late comeback from Froome given his training method from the beginning of the Giro, but I hoped Yates would be up to the task. It is not that different to last year with the Dauphine/TDF last year where he rode into form. Some riders perform best as others fatigue. The two seasoned GT riders were on another level compared to anyone else in the last week.

I just love the Giro, and I thought it was a great race and am disappointed that people would write it off.
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