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Truth and Reconciliation

Truth and Reconciliation

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First off, cycling needs a different term for what it would like to convene. To equate cycling’s past with South Africa’s and Liberia’s dark histories is just wrong. Maybe the “I was a lying dick” tribunal. When I hear riders I admire say the past is the past, let’s look forward, I now assume they cheated. Cipo, Bugno, Faboo. Do I care? That has become harder to answer over time but yes, I still do care. Should I be surprised? No, I should be surprised if they were clean, like Jens, from East Germany. That actually does surprise me. If I was a “clean” rider, like Jens or Stuart O’Grady, I’d be rather pissed off about the missed opportunities. I would be damn angry rather than mildly surprised. They wouldn’t be lying to me too, would they?

Gianni Bugno seemed to take little pleasure in some of his greatest victories. When he beat Museeuw in the 1994 Ronde van Vlaanderen he looked a little guilty to me. If there ever was call for some Italian chest thumping and end-zone dancing I would think that might have been the day. Yet he seemed to want some privacy and there was no blinding smile a top the podium. Even back in 1994 the thought flickered in my head that my man, Gianni Bugno, didn’t just beat Museeuw on cunning alone.

Professional cycling is a brutally hard sport. It’s hard enough that drugs have been associated with it since men have been racing each other over unholy distances. I’d rather have cycling known for that than have cycling known as The Liars Club. As cycling fans we have been lied to by most everyone involved with the sport. I’m sick of being lied to much more than I’m sick to know Cipo was doped to the gills during the best season of his career. Let’s get this over with. Let us get to the Truth. It might even be fun reading. You did what how many times? Are you that stupid? Wow, that really resets the perfect amount of dumb meter doesn’t it?

If cycling does completely air its dirty past it will be a first. I don’t see American football or baseball ever addressing their doping issues. If it wasn’t such a hard damn sport doping wouldn’t be such a temptation: bike racing, horse racing and syringes. If it was just money that corrupted sports every golfer would be doing something besides drinking alcohol at the 19th hole. And fat bastards named Fuzzy or Daly wouldn’t be stubbing out their cigarettes on their caddie’s hat before teeing off. Will it ever happen? Not if the present UCI has anything to say about it. A lot of people who are involved in cycling above the level of the riders don’t want the dirty laundry snapping in the breeze.

Reconciliation…let’s call it freedom from legal prosecution. The reconciliation is going to happen between riders and fans in the cafés not in court. I don’t believe it will be a big deal, we still love cycling, I still love Bugno and Cipo. Nothing will have changed except everyone will know the truth. What will the record books look like after the smoke clears? Maybe nothing different, maybe that’s part of all this. Yes, Cipo finally won Milan-San Remo sprinting against other racers who were not clean either. He was the best of them that day.

Cipo, you worry too much. The tifosi won’t turn on you. Has the pope been roughed up yet? No? You are good then.

All right, enough talk, let’s look at some Spring Classic action, 1994, the Ronde van Vlaanderen

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=47lDLGkewvY[/youtube]

// Etiquette // Tradition

  1. @Marcus on the Pantone Colour scale his hair at Gan was YELLOW…

  2. @scaler911

    Fucking Merckx. While this is a very well written article (it is, truly), I’m sick to fucking death about talking about the doping right now. Yes, I realize that it has to be dealt with. But I really want to talk more about proper bar tape and is it gonna be a cold and wet P-R this year.

    Rant over…………..

    Then let’s talk digging deep to find new Record cassette deals. A straight block at 125.00 with free shipping and lockring.

  3. I call an item like that at that price — “Buried Treasure”

  4. @Buck Rogers

    @Steampunk Yeah, I mean, there is no way that Boonen has EVER doped, at least not in competition (he says while crying into his shirt as all of his heroes come crashing down around him).

    For some reason, I see this when I think of you and the thought of Boonen doping…

  5. @Steampunk – the sad truth is you are probably right, which makes me even more angry…

  6. @roger & @Gianni:

    Re. yellow bar tape: This guest has taken up residence in my garage. Beautiful steel frame. I would never have thought to go yellow, but I think it looks very, very sharp:

  7. @Steampunk love your coping mechanism – 1994 Fleche Wallone notwithstanding.

  8. @Tobin

    @Steampunk

    Add Ryder to that list. He got very, very quiet as teammates came out and the Chicken (with whom he trained) finally confessed. Compare the press and interviews he’s given since the Giro with other GT champions over the past few years.

    Now a guy is guilty basis how he reacts?

    @wiscot

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, as Gianni mentioned, too many riders stood atop podiums and looked nonplussed when they should have been crazy with happiness. Guilty conscience? I think so.

    So, if you are not doing backflips, chugging champagne, and dry humping the podium girls you are on the juice? How about the guys that choose to keep it classy and act like they’ve been there before? I hate the guilty until proven innocent our sport has taken. How to fix it? Not a fucking clue…maybe public stoning?

    I’m not suggesting that riders freak out on the podium, what I’m saying is that for a professional cyclist to win a classic or stage of a grand tour (for most, a major highlight of their career) and show little emotion or happiness is IMHO suspect. Even an exhausted rider should be able to look happy. Too many looked too glum as if they has something on their conscience. Am I casting a wide net? Sure, but look at the podium pix and the list of juicers.

  9. Something really crazy with all of this as well, especially early on during the Rocket Fuel Era, was how much of it was a crapshoot. I know guys had doctors, but did they all? I doubt it. I think I’d have been very, very scared to try some of these methods. I guess that’s why they say the Stakes is High.

  10. @Ron

    Something really crazy with all of this as well, especially early on during the Rocket Fuel Era, was how much of it was a crapshoot. I know guys had doctors, but did they all? I doubt it. I think I’d have been very, very scared to try some of these methods. I guess that’s why they say the Stakes is High.

    More than a few guys died in their sleep during the early EPO years.  Their blood was so thick, their hearts couldn’t pump it.

  11. @Steampunk

    @roger & @Gianni:

    Re. yellow bar tape: This guest has taken up residence in my garage. Beautiful steel frame. I would never have thought to go yellow, but I think it looks very, very sharp:

    hmmmm, nice. That is a cool design with the curved seat stays in steel. Is that a silca pump I see? With a mount on top instead of underneath?

  12. @Marcus

    @Steampunk love your coping mechanism – 1994 Fleche Wallone notwithstanding.

    Yeah, “Classics” is not the right place to draw the line.  The list of winners in the Ardennes over the last 20 years doesn’t inspire a ton of confidence.  There are some of them I hope didn’t dope, but the list of doping reprobates is much longer.  The cobbled races, maybe.

  13. @roger

     i went off the rails, and was that close to being thrown out of school. that was over milk, i couldnt imagine how bonkers i’d go over doping allegations.

    I got thrown out of school twice. It wasn’t that bad.

    Just ordered this. I was going to order the “Soft Touch,” but I saw people pissing and moaning about how hard it is to keep clean. So I went “Tacky,” which I guess suits my déclassé social status.

  14. If we’re gonna discuss bar tape, I want some more feedback. I’ve ridden the Microtex. I’ve also ridden the Microtex high gloss. I wanna know about the Soft Touch. I also wanna know about the fi'zi:k logo tape. Is it just the Soft Touch but with logos?

    And, if we’re on it, in the mid-to-late 90s some dudes, such as Der Kaiser had logo tape. What was it and who made it.

    Furthermore, does logo tape have any place on classy bikes, like Steel Steeds, or only on modern Carbones?

  15. Nate – I like fun substances, such as the ones you’d utilize before nighttime college rides. Ones that make me giggle a bit more, not ones that might kill me. I’ve steered far clear of anything I thought might seriously mess me up.

    I wonder what it was like to think about and/or take/do something you knew might kill you. To win a stage or just get a contract. Maybe I’m just an outsider but I think I would have said fuck it far before that.

  16. @brett

    @Barracuda

    So where does this leave the likes of Jens and Stewey O who have won and particularly Stewey who smashed an awesome Paris Roubaix , should I therefore question those efforts also, similarly big Jens powering on the front for hours on end ?

    If anyone believes those two are/were clean then they’ve got rocks in their head. They are both using their ‘Mr Nice Guy’ personas to try and keep the fans hoodwinked. They make me sick, listening to their drivel.

    I’m with you on the skepticism  but all the evidence suggests that it’s *possible* to win on a day-to-day basis against a doped rider. EPO etc all have an impact on the short term, but their real magic is in the grand tours. Stuey, Jens, Millar, Boonen, Faboo – its all *possible* that they’ve won clean, at least from one time to another.

    Of course, there’s a big delta between it being possible and it happening, but I do like to think there are some clean ones winning against the dopers, like it was back in the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s and (early) 90’s.

    When I was a bad fan to Ryder (I’ll tell the story some time, it wasn’t pretty), the overwhelming thought I had walking away from it was that I’d just shook hands with a guy who know definitively whether or not he won the Giro clean. That’s an akward thought to have – he’s the only one in the world who knows for sure if he won the Giro clean.

    I bought the latest copy of Cylesport, and there’s an interview with him in it. I bought it after meeting him. I haven’t read it yet, but I scanned the pages. I was amazed that one of the quotes that’s pulled out of it is him saying something to the effect that its great to know he won a Grand Tour clean.

    I’m not sure what @Steampunk is on about and he might not be wrong, but in the context of what my reflection was and his quote in the mag, I think that’s a strong argument for the possibility.

    And Bretto, I don’t have rocks in my head. But I am an hopeless romantic. Potato pozato.

  17. @Sauterelle

    @graham d.m.

    @Barracuda

    Im still in two minds with regards to all of this, on one hand it appears that majority where pumped full to the gills and possibly still are, therefore its a level playing field, therefore the best still one, but on the other hand its cheating and if I were racing clean then I would be mightily pissed off and looking for heads to punch. So where does this leave the likes of Jens and Stewey O who have won and particularly Stewey who smashed an awesome Paris Roubaix , should I therefore question those efforts also, similarly big Jens powering on the front for hours on end ?

    Is it because of Lances methods that he differs in peoples opinions rather than say Cipo or the pirate ??

    It is, in my mind, certainly the methods that make the difference. I’m not as mad that Lance doped, as I am that he is a giant douche, who bullied and threatened all who stood in his way.

    Yes, this.

    Yeah, if Pharmy wasn’t such a twatwaffle, we’d all have let this go. No one is chasing down Ulli or digging up Pantani’s grave to do a post-mortem.

    Armstrong played the game, maybe brought it to a new level and made a science out of what most people consider an art, but he was a massive fucking dick about it. People hate dicks. End of.

  18. @Tobin

    @wiscot

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, as Gianni mentioned, too many riders stood atop podiums and looked nonplussed when they should have been crazy with happiness. Guilty conscience? I think so.

    So, if you are not doing backflips, chugging champagne, and dry humping the podium girls you are on the juice? How about the guys that choose to keep it classy and act like they’ve been there before? I hate the guilty until proven innocent our sport has taken. How to fix it? Not a fucking clue…maybe public stoning?

    No, but I think what Wiscot is on to is that a rider, classy or not, typically looks proud of their accomplishment. There’s a difference between cool and guilt – and we can all recognize it.

    The optimist in me is very glad for that; I like to think that pride is still rooted in the notion that you’ve earned what you accomplished.

    Anyone who can still feel guilt for cheating is not beyond redemption. It is people like Armstrong who felt righteousness in proving they could be successful through cheating who are lost.

    I still have faith for those who feel shame.

  19. @unversio

    @scaler911

    Fucking Merckx. While this is a very well written article (it is, truly), I’m sick to fucking death about talking about the doping right now. Yes, I realize that it has to be dealt with. But I really want to talk more about proper bar tape and is it gonna be a cold and wet P-R this year.

    Rant over…………..

    Then let’s talk digging deep to find new Record cassette deals. A straight block at 125.00 with free shipping and lockring.

    See. Look at that work of art. At $125? Awesome! I don’t have any Campa anymore (save a nice front hub, and a DT lever with a little adjusting wheel in it that Frank would like to have), but I’d probably get that cogset just to look at it. Got my eye on a set of Delta brakes on ebay going for a price in my budget. Just to have ’em.

  20. @Gianni

    Pump mounted on top in order to facilitate shouldering the bike. Plenty of clearance, too, for thicker tyres. I’m looking forward to test-riding it on Sunday at the Cogal.

  21. @Ron

    If we’re gonna discuss bar tape, I want some more feedback.

    Give ZIPP Service Course handlebar tape a try. Or ZIPP CX tape. Or 3T. But only if using 3T or ZIPP components somewhere on the bike.

  22. @scaler911

    Got my eye on a set of Delta brakes on ebay going for a price in my budget. Just to have ’em.

    Yes… Brev. Campa. is always a good investment — even just to have it. There’s much innovation in the bloodline of Campagnolo. And Delta won precious merit the hard way!

  23. @frank

  24. @scaler911

    @frank

    Don’t tempt me, sir!

    http://www.hark.com/clips/tjgvqfmmpj-dont-tempt-me-sir

    How many hours did I fondle that for?

  25. Re Cipo revelations, what I found hard to take was that his response was so un-Cipo and so un-Italian. The real Cipo would have immediately admitted it upfront and said something offensive like, “yeah I took PEDs but at least I was good looking. and no-one likes an ugly athlete.”

    Or he could have pulled a Berlusconi: http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1874098_1874099_2098983,00.html . [the link is in no way an endorsement of his comments – more an illustration of Italian offensiveness]

  26. @unversio

  27. @sthilzy Who can name that Panasonic rider — giant ??

  28. 1989 – Panasonic-Isostar-Colnago-Agu

  29. 1989 — Jean-Marie Wampers

  30. @James

    Re Cipo revelations, what I found hard to take was that his response was so un-Cipo and so un-Italian. The real Cipo would have immediately admitted it upfront and said something offensive like, “yeah I took PEDs but at least I was good looking. and no-one likes an ugly athlete.”

    Or he could have pulled a Berlusconi: http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1874098_1874099_2098983,00.html . [the link is in no way an endorsement of his comments – more an illustration of Italian offensiveness]

    Exactly! Never let your Italian lawyer cover your Italian ass. I would have preferred your senario.

  31. @Rob

    “I still love Bugno and Cipo. Nothing will have changed except everyone will know the truth.”

    This is truth, nothing will change. There will still be cheats as we are finding out in other sports. For me it’s not that I love Cipo or Kelly, Merckx… It’s that I love their style on the bike. They are doing something formidable and beautiful that I know and love doing myself.

    I do not know them as persons only their images and results. The persons do not really interest me because they are for the most part just jocks without much depth. Not their fault, there is no time to develop a skill or an intellect on the bike. Some I have wanted to meet either because they seem to be interesting, Hampsten, Fignon, even the Badger because he is such a character!

    Bottom line, lets know what is going on and then we can judge if we still care that average speeds are beyond human abilities and does that matter in what is, after all, just a game.

    I guess you have all seen this

    http://www.cyclingtips.com.au/2013/02/the-future-of-blood-doping-epo-gene-doping/

    Maybe we should be greatful these guys are willing to take these risks and enjoy the superman stuff, hell maybe they are trailblazers for all of us, willing human guinea pigs, you can retire to Asia and hook up with quality HGH out of china, get your eyesight back, get fit healthy, all for very little, it’s a bit like the horsemeat scandal in the UK, they just wanna know its horsemeat not beef!

    so tell us what you’re into let’s see whatcha got, just how far can you go? I’d pay to see that.

  32. I’ll admit the constant doping issues had led me to move away from cycling a few years a go and I could have left it behind for good but a strange thing happened.  I was surfing the web one day when I found a link to some “rules”, which were good, and a home page of a funny website that appeared to be full of people who rode their bike for their personal sake rather than anything else.  That resonated with me and I’ve not looked back.

    I still follow the pro game but cycling is now about me and my stead, not if someone I’ll never meet, who is doing things on a bike that are alien to me, went quicker than a bunch of other people on any given day. I’ll enjoy watching but it is now not cycling to me, cycling is me driving myself on a wet Sunday morning when the only thing I’m trying to escape from is the cold. VLVV

  33. @Ron

    If we’re gonna discuss bar tape, I want some more feedback. I’ve ridden the Microtex. I’ve also ridden the Microtex high gloss. I wanna know about the Soft Touch. I also wanna know about the fi’zi:k logo tape. Is it just the Soft Touch but with logos?

    And, if we’re on it, in the mid-to-late 90s some dudes, such as Der Kaiser had logo tape. What was it and who made it.

    Furthermore, does logo tape have any place on classy bikes, like Steel Steeds, or only on modern Carbones?

    If you are going black then go Lizard Skin DSP…it is like an armchair for the hands…stunning…otherworldly…unfortunately the bastards have not made white one that can stay clean so for white tape I am sticking with Microtex..

  34. @Deakus

    +1 The Stealth Bomber is wearing black DSP and its fantastic. #2 will be upgraded at the next re-wrap. Shame they don’t do white, but black suits my needs perfectly for now.

  35. Ah, Berlusconi! He might be the most Randy Man south of 170cms, aside, of course, from Prince…

    I’m glad some more voices have chimed in on this. I still don’t know how to feel sometimes, and it even changes from day to day. Angry? Dejected? So What? Reading what some of the respected Followers and Keepers have to say has been phô for my soul. Keep the conversation flowing!

    Deakus – I tried out some a cheapo version of that rubberized tape, on my cx bike of course, and I actually really like it. I’m sure the Lizard Skin stuff is super nice, just gotta decide if it would look the part of a truly classy road steed.

  36. @frank

    You know what’s funny about that shifter, is I don’t have the other one, I don’t have any of the hard wear to attach it to the shifter bosses, and I don’t remember ever having a non-Ergo setup on any bike I’ve owned. I don’t know where that shifter came from.

  37. @Yannersan x100.  i echo your sentiments to a T. and @rob. i dont have the gift of writing like others so best i can do is +1 when it reverberates with me.

    @Ron the glossy is some stiff tape.  it wraps nicely and can look the business, but the edges eat up my hands on longer rides.  logo tape i just dont care for.  finishing tape with company name is fine, but i hate seeing it splashed up and down the bars. that’s just me though.

  38. @Yannersan

    Yeah baby, that’s just what we are talking about. I live so many time zones away from everything that I rarely watch races as they unfold, which is the only way to watch racing. One thing about this sport is we can rides bikes about as nice as a pro rides, look as sharp (almost), we can ride the same routes, we can have more fun and drink more beer than them. It’s perfect.

    Having just said all that. Do I want to stream the Giro to my flat screen TV and waste some unholy amount of the month of May watching Ryder defend? Fuck yes.

  39. @scaler911

    @frank

    You know what’s funny about that shifter, is I don’t have the other one, I don’t have any of the hard wear to attach it to the shifter bosses, and I don’t remember ever having a non-Ergo setup on any bike I’ve owned. I don’t know where that shifter came from.

    Yeah, but it has a fucking barrel adjuster on it. Only an Italian could make that look good. A DT Shifter with a barrel adjuster! Its crazy yo!

  40. We get good milage (from Drunk Cyclist):

  41. @frank

    Is that an indexed DT shifter then?

  42. Find out who was ‘clean’ or not at Dopeology

    O’Grady and Jens weren’t on the ‘People’ list.

  43. @sthilzy

    Find out who was ‘clean’ or not at Dopeology

    O’Grady and Jens weren’t on the ‘People’ list.

    Wow! that’s quite the site. Kudos to whomever put all that together.

  44. Black bars & stem for Fignon, silver bars & stem for LeMan. Love the contrasting styles!

  45. @scaler911

    We get good milage (from Drunk Cyclist):

    Hmm, we need to convert in order to make it relevant for a Velominatus. Some days I might not walk anywhere but to my bike, then from my bike to my desk, then back to my bike. But, I still might ride for three hours.

  46. Cobbles are awesome.

  47. This was included in the Neuvation Cycles monthly email. Pretty funny stuff, I think.

    Chicken Admits to Doping

    An organic chicken, of the bantam class, has admitted to doping.  Exact particulars are difficult to confirm due to its lack of command of the English language, but his oversized thighs and succulent white meat breasts led authorities to suspect this was no normal bird.

    Authorities enlisted the aid of a chicken whisperer to pry out the facts.  The chicken didn’t admit to knowingly dope, but suggested it must have been in something it ate.  Breeders, even organic breeders, have long been suspected of giving the birds “a little extra juice” to fatten them up for harvest.

    “This is an ongoing investigation, since we suspect this involves more than one bird.  We believe this practice is widespread and could even be linked to school lunch programs.”  commented the Chief Poultry Officer.

    First word of this came from a first grader who noticed a particularly succulent chop and immediately calculated how much he would make should he win a whistle blower suit.  The kid happenes to excel in math.

    It’s also unclear what disciplinary action the chicken could face.  Sanctioning would seem trite, since chickens are normally executed.

    This is a breaking story.  Thanks for reading – John Neugent

  48. This set of articles gave me a lot to consider. Three part series on the history of going faster, with the help from doctors & their tricks…

    Part 1: http://www.cyclingnews.com/features/a-history-on-the-use-of-blood-transfusions-in-cycling

    Part 2: http://www.cyclingnews.com/features/a-history-on-blood-transfusions-in-cycling-part-2

    Part 3: http://www.cyclingnews.com/features/a-history-on-blood-transfusions-in-cycling-part-3

  49. Oh Shit…..you just know where this is all going to end up – No change, move along, cycling is now clean…..this story really depresses me, the poison still spreads at the UCI

    http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/moran-resigns-after-voting-against-mcquaid

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