Originally Posted by newfydog
They are bike racers, not gladiators. Lets give them some rules to live by.
I agree, but I also feel that they shouldn't enforce standards that they do not have sound enough controls to enforce (at least within 99% reliability). Searching out riders who are even suspected of doping seems like a witch-hunt to me. Even Contador had to deal with it this year because it was alleged that members of his former team had doped as part of operation Puerto - so of course that meant that because Contador was a successful rider that he must also be doping.
The list of disallowed substances seems to be getting pretty intense too. Pretty soon if these guys eat a rare steak they are going to be disqualified for doping.
: There have been many studies done regarding the body's ability to recover from grueling tests like multi-stage tours. These studies actually take into consideration the level of conditioning that these guys have as well. The end conclusion in most cases is that the human body cannot recover quickly enough on it's own to be able to keep that pace for two weeks at a time. This requires that some amount of foreign substances must be helping these guys to recover between stages so they can get up the next day and do it all over again. So is that doping? Where do you draw the line in a sport the requies that of it's athletes?
I'm all for cleaning up the blatant abuses, but it seems like those who are searching these people out are willing to completely destroy the face of the sport just to make an example out of a few riders. On the flip-side I think the media attention has been good for riding in North America, so hoepfully the sport will continue to grow and breed a new generation of clean riders...