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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 22:46 
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This is worth a look: Le Tour on Google Earth


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 22:31 
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www.cyclingweekly.co.uk also offers a good online commentary on "Le Tour Live" :lol: 8-)

This week's issue is dedicated to Le Tour and a few predictions as to who they think will win :wink: .. and letters page is full of the drugs fiasco. One reader writes that doping within cycling seems to get greater coverage than athletics, football and tennis.. :roll:


Great shame that some athletes will try to enhance performance deliberately. However, when some over the counter cures are also on a taboo list.. who'd be a professional athlete? If I've a bad cold and I buy something from the chemist.. given the effects of the sniffles - doubt anythig would make me go faster! Besides - when I'm feeling poorly - I tend to sleep anyway... :wink:


But back to the attempt to enhance performance with deliberation...

The whole point of any sport requiring the sheer power and control of a human body is natural human endeavour and if these people are skewing this achievement - then they undermine this human quest to seek natural perfection of mind, body and spirit of man working together to the goal of stretching human talent to its extemes.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2006 12:00 
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We've more or less done with the Pyrenees now and it isn't any clearer who might win Le Tour. At least we know that Iban Mayo's stage win in the Giro was a flash in the pan. Yesterday's finish at Pla de Beret didn't provide any clear indicators as to whether Floyd Landis, Levi Leipheimer or Denis Menchov was in the running for the yellow jersey in Paris. Dessel (who I had never heard of before) was unlucky not to keep yellow yesterday.

At least one team - T-mobile - has shown some semblance of being able to control the race!

It was good to see that the road from Col de Suscousse to Col de Soudet had been resurfaced for Le Tour - what a horrid bit of road that was! I am very fond of the valley up through Sainte Engrace - about 20 years ago there was a series on Channel 4 about the valley to record how it was before the dead-end road of the time was extended to the Col de Soudet.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 18, 2006 21:29 
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Frank Scleck won the Alpine stage at Alpe d'Huez. Have spent winter hols here - superb skiing.. :wink: Cab appreciate just how challenging this stage must have been as result of knowing the area from a holiday there.

Seemed to me to be pretty tight up to the end though with Schleck making his move towards the final stretch.

Landis was fourth in stage but still remains in "poll position" overall - as Boonen retired after a bad fall and cuts preceding Lauteret.

My cash is on Landis ... but must admit this is one of the best Tours for some time despite the bad start regarding drug allegations against the big names.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 22, 2006 15:00 
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Stage 19 today - hard one threads in and out of valleys and one steep climb to Montchanin Le Haut. Should suit Landis well.


Per CW - most exciting Tour for years!

Only 30 seconds between the top three so dar - could be anyone one of them .. and still room for someone to "steal" 8-)

Chriss Hoy told CW that getting his finishers medal in the Etape du TOur ws "the hardest thing he had ever won in his career to date" :lol: A 21 year old French man won the 117 mile Etape which followed the route over the Alpe d'Huez French woman Karine Sayssette from Millau was the first woman past the post and 72nd in the field. Took the winners just over 6 hours to complete this run. 8-) 8-)

Ullrich has been sacked from T -Mobile because of the drugs allegations. He was supposed to have competed in the Tour of Britain (Aug29-Sep3)

Good news for the Brit Tour.. Landis and Boonen are set to compete 8-)

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 22, 2006 19:59 
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Still close . Honcar leads.. Kloden second and Landis third with Pereiro a close fourth.

Given the results to date.. still anyone within top five.


Been best Tour for years

Star letter in CW this week suggests the sport is being let down by its heroes and wants to see longer bans for those involved in cheating by drug taking to enhance performance. He likens this to footballers taking a dive and fiegning injury to secure a free kick or penalty. A form of cheating. :roll:

Trouble is .. there are so many taboo drugs. Of the Swiss family . Kriss, Axel and Willi all competed for Switzerland in various alpine sports. During that time they had to watch everything they consumed and record it and submit to various tests in view of an official. (Wildy competed for her university and was also subjected to similar tests with the plaintive wild "ist rudey" :lol: :lol: :lol: )

I would say that the whole point is how far we can push our bodies to achieve excellence and push the boundaries of human endeavour - without enhancement. However, there are so many taboo substances and many purchased over the counter to alleviate routine illnesses and sometimes I think we are in danger of condemning athletes over a trace which may not even have an effect on performance. I think there is a need to decide what actually constitutes as crime and apply discretion when something purhased over a counter to cure a cold or coughis just found in a slight innocent trace.

Deliberate drug use to diddle or gain advantage.. definite :nono: NO!

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2006 21:53 
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Toyed with putting this as separate thread.


Landis! He tested positive for "high levels of testosterone" following his stunning ride on Stage 17.


Suspended pending result of sample B. Could be stripped of the title.

Oh... it brings any sport into disrepute. Sure -we should keep speculation down until second sample has been scrutinised. If he took anything . .. unwise as all top athletes/interim/winners are screened as routine. Even more stupid given what happened at the start of this - the most important of all competitions. :shock: :?

I hope for the sake of the sport that the lab had a glitch with sample A.

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Smilies are contagious
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It makes folk wonder just what you REALLY got up to last night!

Smily to penny.. penny to pound
safespeed prospers-smiles all round! !

But the real message? SMILE.. GO ON ! DO IT! and the world will smile with you!
Enjoy life! You only have the one bite at it.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2006 22:15 
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all I can do is look on the brightside that at least cycling, unlike other sports, is attempting to deal with this problem.

200 athletes were implicated in the spanish investigation. 50 of them were cyclists. Have we heard anything at all about the other 150?

Athletics is riddled with drugs. Carl Lewis, supposedly Mr Clean, admits (many years later) that he was doped to the eyeballs. Does anyone bat an eyelid?
Linford Christie gets busted. Not only does British Athletics support his ridiculous claim that he was just taking a "sporting supplement" , not only do you name a stadium after him but he's now coaching your next lot of "athletes".
and we haven't even started on weightlifting, soccer, Shane Warne's mum etc, etc.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2006 18:17 
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Mad Moggie wrote:
Oh... it brings any sport into disrepute. Sure -we should keep speculation down until second sample has been scrutinised. If he took anything . .. unwise as all top athletes/interim/winners are screened as routine. Even more stupid given what happened at the start of this - the most important of all competitions. :shock: :?

I hope for the sake of the sport that the lab had a glitch with sample A.

Going back to the days of Tom Simpson cycling does seem to have had a very long and close association with drugs unmatched by any sport other than athletics. More than anything else success is largely dependent on individual stamina and so drugs are likely to give much more of an advantage than, say, in football, where skill, observation, teamwork etc. play a greater part.

Hopefully they can restore confidence but the sport's image is very seriously tarnished.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2006 12:49 
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Without wishing to prejudice Floyd Landis's innocence plea, having watched his performance on both the stages to La Toussuire and Morzine at length on Eurosport, I am reminded of his very aggressive solo arrival at the finish at Morzine and the look on the face of this "normally mild man".

Of course it could be coincidence that excessive testosterone produces a similar effect to what I, the commentators and many others observed that afternoon.

I found Paul Kimmage's articles in the Sunday Times a very good accompaniment to what is going on.

Personally I am saddenned by it all. :(

Oh and one last thing - I am amazed they are still taking urine samples not blood samples.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2006 17:51 
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A Cyclist wrote:
Without wishing to prejudice Floyd Landis's innocence plea, having watched his performance on both the stages to La Toussuire and Morzine at length on Eurosport, I am reminded of his very aggressive solo arrival at the finish at Morzine and the look on the face of this "normally mild man".

Of course it could be coincidence that excessive testosterone produces a similar effect to what I, the commentators and many others observed that afternoon.

I found Paul Kimmage's articles in the Sunday Times a very good accompaniment to what is going on.

Personally I am saddenned by it all. :(

Oh and one last thing - I am amazed they are still taking urine samples not blood samples.


I too am saddened by these events. Of course - like athletics, skating, ski-ing, tennis, swimming and even fencing, boxing, wrestling - personal stamina is tested to the full.


I agree - they should take blood samples as well.

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If you want to get to heaven - you have to raise a little hell!

Smilies are contagious
They are just like the flu
We use our smilies on YOU today
Now Good Causes are smiling too!

KEEP SMILING
It makes folk wonder just what you REALLY got up to last night!

Smily to penny.. penny to pound
safespeed prospers-smiles all round! !

But the real message? SMILE.. GO ON ! DO IT! and the world will smile with you!
Enjoy life! You only have the one bite at it.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2006 19:24 
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I thought this was a very good (although distinctly pessimistic) article by Simon Barnes in yesterday's Times:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/newspaper/ ... 13,00.html

Cycling left dying on its wheels amid overdose of greed, contempt and sham

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2006 20:27 
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PeterE wrote:
I thought this was a very good (although distinctly pessimistic) article by Simon Barnes in yesterday's Times:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/newspaper/ ... 13,00.html

Cycling left dying on its wheels amid overdose of greed, contempt and sham


Agree with you. Yes - they can cheat without detection as well.

My second son, "terrible twin" Nick. I call him this because he has an eye for the girls; I fined him for smoking, disobeying my strict curfew on time-keeping. (I expect my kids in my house within reason of time I expect them home. I do expect a little tardiness - but not hours :wink: ) ; sassing at me; sassing at Wildy (he lost there - I do not even dare sass at my wife. :yikes: :lol: )

But I expect challenges - and - basically he's good, balanced and moral in base nature. I do not really have or need any worries there.

Anyway, as you know - terrible twins are learning to drive and so far - results show mature approaches and they appear to be as steady and comptetent as their older brother. I am relieved - especially with Nick as we have sparred a lot as father and son - mainly because his young hormones are inspiring him to challenge me. :lol: :lol: I expect this anyway :wink: He's normal. :lol:

Anyway - I hesitate to post as a bit like boasting about my second son. I am very proud of him. I do admit this.

OK. My second son won a place in the UK national fencing team and looks set for inclusion in the UK's Commonwealth and Olympic Team. :bow: He is rather agile and fit. I do not know where this talent came from either. :shock: :? :? Swiss mob are known for alpine sports and I play rugby and golf for my own fun - but medium average. I am no Tiger Woods at golf and no where near the standard of excellence demanded by professional rugby clubs. Cycling-wise - fit enough for leisure rides but not at all a serious contender for any serious competition. I think IG could cut it though :roll: He would.... :roll:

Anyway - my second son competes. He has to produce samples as routine. As result - we have to watch what he eats and if he's ill - we have to be aware of the medication and we notify his coach as well. If the medication contains a taboo ingredient - Nick cannot compete until his body is clear. Family regards its name and reputation as "sacrosanct." Fortunately, our youngsters respect this :wink:

But.. for the "Tour" - winning means a lot. The reputation of the Tour de France/ Tour de Suisse and the Tour of Britain mean a lot to these nationsand those competing too. :wink:

Bringing into disrepute places cycling's image as a sport as tarnished and it really does undermine any campaign to get bums on saddles as it conveys a negative image that cycling is anything but a "gentle exercise"

People will associate cycling with the hard work which can only be achievable with the help of some drug to enhance the effort. It does undo all the CTC and Bike week effort to encourage people to take up a form of exercise which they would actually rather enjoy

Of course - I stress- not the case and will urge people to get on a bike. Contact CTC and book a lesson with an approved instructor near you to gain confidence on the roads if returning. Contact local councils for "safe routes" ; practice on routes you know to be "quiet" and just ride to your own strengths and build the stamina, muscles and exertise. Never over-extend - it demoralises :wink: Ride to your own strength and stamina. You will be amazed at how much you improve each day! :wink:


I do ride my bike and enjoy.

I do drive my cars and enjoy.

I do accept cycling pointss of view as a result - but will say tht COAST principles are the way forward for all road users.

For record I will say that safespeed is not at all anti-cycling nor even unsympathetic to those who are disabled.


The campaign is not even about increasing any speed limit (even though I personaly see no reason not to increase motorway speed limits to 80 or even 90 mph :wink:

The campaign is questioning the logic of replacing police with automation.

We simply want fair play, common sense and safety for all; pedestrians, cyclistss, horse riders, bikers, car drivers, van drivers 4 x drivers, mini bus drivers, bus drivers, coach drivers, truck drivers and juggernaut drivers ;)_

To the lurking critics -- does this satisfy as to waht we all ask for? :wink: :)

_________________
If you want to get to heaven - you have to raise a little hell!

Smilies are contagious
They are just like the flu
We use our smilies on YOU today
Now Good Causes are smiling too!

KEEP SMILING
It makes folk wonder just what you REALLY got up to last night!

Smily to penny.. penny to pound
safespeed prospers-smiles all round! !

But the real message? SMILE.. GO ON ! DO IT! and the world will smile with you!
Enjoy life! You only have the one bite at it.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 30, 2006 07:57 
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CW must be a bit upset by this as they went to press with accolades to Landis

Editor's comment

Quote:

It was certainly a comeback like no other considering the American's collapse less than 24 hours earlier

[snip]

pro bike riders rarely blow so badly. Landis was barely moving - losing a minute every kilolmetre. He was frail, he was human - like the rest of us His Tour was over.


Later on on the CW report - ride described as "one of the most impressive feats in Tour history" But in another report - another CW journalist did hope that his admiration was not misplaced.

As for his "comeback" - Landis is quoted as saying he threw away the rule book and rode out of anger"

:shock:

Dunno about the anger - but if his second sample tests positive - then he did indeed "throw away the rule book" :(



This has shades of Simpson to some extent. :(


On the letters page - one reader questions the success rate of cycling cleaning up its act and he has changed his mind about rehabilitation of offenders and reckons it's time to get really tough

Quote:

Previously I was in favour of the rehabilitation of the offender into the "moral community."

Now I feel such measures have failed and a new approach is necessary - such as perhaps a ban for life - or some suitbaly career ending period , follwoed by disqualification of the whole team for a punitive period. After all - if you hit them where it hurts - in the budget - the long term interests of the sport may be better served


Hmm. Bit draconian as regards banning then entire team - but I see his point that it may deter.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2006 10:06 
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Result of Landis's second sample expected this morning. L'Equipe on Monday was claiming the level in sample A was "exogenous" (from an outside source) . He could even have naturally high levels too,. However, the problem is that few will believe and the French Tour organisers are worried.

Just in - second sample proven postive. Landis expected the second sample to show same high levels but insists he did not take any banned substance to cause this. Looks set to lose the coveted title and go down as the first winner to be stripped of his title.

Despite this being the most interesting for years in that it was the most "open title" for years... the Spanish fiasco at the beginning affected viewing ratings. These were down and so too were the crowds lining the routes compared to previous years. Worries are the long term damage done to the sport.

His fellow cyclists are shocked - Landis was always regarded as on the the good clean guys - Greg Lemond claims he is a victim of a corrupt sport.

Per CW - testosterone allowed in system is 4:1. Higher than average of 1:1 ratio because of natural fluctuations. Used to cheat - CW says it has to be taken long-term to aid recovery or build muscle. It is not then a short term enhancer. This means Landis - if he was cheating by taking this drug - had been taking it for some time. Basically, before one can judge him - previous test results will have to be taken into account.

Sample A was rumoured to be 11:1 - which is probably why L'Equipe are speculating an "exogenous source."


Meanwhile in Athletics - Twice World Champ and Olympic Gold Star - USA Justin Gatlin has just tested positive fro testosterone. His second positive and he faces a life ban. Gatlin claims he is innocent.

Diane Modahl tested positive SHe got a four year ban and battled to clear her name. SHe evenutally did so by proving the lab had mishandled her sample.

A shame for all sports that the pressure to win or be a "nobody" leads to such tarnishing of all these events.

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Take with a chuckle or a grain of salt
Drive without COAST and it's all your own fault!

A SMILE is a curve that sets everything straight (P Diller).

A Smiley Per post
FINES USfor our COAST!


Approach love and cooking with reckless abandon - but driving with a smile and a COAST calm mind.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2006 10:58 
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sad really. Still, there's one less cheat in the field now. Hopefully any that remain will take the hint.

THIS LINK may shock you. How many of these have we heard of? That's right. None. All quietly swept under the carpet.


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