Yet another black eye for professional cycling: so ask us if we really care anymore
Posted Feb 16 2011 1:31pm
This week's announcement that Alberto Contador is not guilty of cheating (after all) by the Spanish Cycling Federation (RFCEC) is just another reason why professional cycling has become the poster child for professional doping.
As you may recall from THIS story Contador originally tested positive for the anabolic agent clenbuterol, which is a banned substance, and which he says he mistakenly munched down in tainted meat during the last Tour de France.
The three time Tour de France winner told reporters yesterday, "Above all, it is a huge satisfaction not just for me but also for the team, the sponsors, and the truth is that I am happy to be here," from the Tour of Algarve.
So is Alberto a doper, or just an innocent victim of a poor meal choice?
Frankly, we just don't care anymore.
Sorry guys, but until further notice we now just assume that all professional cyclist are juiced up on some sort of banned substance.
After WAY TOO MANY cycling drug scandals to count, we no longer have faith in the pros, the teams, the Federations, and/or the drug testing agencies.
If all of the doping news is to be believed...there's an entire cottage industry that has built up around professional cycling that specialized in a cat and mouse game with the drug testing agencies.
In the dark hidden shadows of France, Spain, Belgium, Russia, Switzerland, and the U.S....the sport doctors, team managers and pro-cyclist secretly work together to come up with the smarter and better ways to beat the system. In other words, to cheat and to give their man the advantage on the big stage day.
At worst the pro cyclist blood runs so thick with red blood cells that a sudden heart attack tragically ends a cycling career. At best the professional rider is awarded with a stage or tour win...all the while winking and thanking his team and of course the modern pharmaceutical industry.
Yesterday Contador added "I think this whole situation is not good at all for cycling and, in truth, it would have been good for it all not to have happened."
We agree and honestly we just don't care anymore, but we do have one small suggestion.
To even out the playing field why not just do away with any sort of pretense of legitimate and fair competition.
You know those guys who compete in the Mr. Universe bodybuilding beauty pageant? Why not take a page out of their "rule book" and and just allow any sort of pharmaceutical aid. Come to think of it that's probably the same "rule book" used by the NFL today.
We suggest that simple but fair plan: a bike race where all is fair, including supplemental oxygen like they use to summit everest.
Just think of all of the money that could be made by having Smith Kline Glaxo sponsors the TdF.
We're up for a superman cyclist Tour de France. After all...that's what it seems like we've been watching all of these years anyway.
What's your take? Has Has professional cycling become the poster child for professional doping?