Thursday, August 23, 2012

Armstrong Gives Up?

Update #1:  In the interest of full disclosure, Armstrong still refuses to accept that USADA has jurisdiction to punish him.  Exactly how this all plays out is still up in the air.  Stay tuned...

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Lance Armstrong will apparently give up his seven Tour de France titles and will be banned for life.

Armstrong maintains his innocence, but he also says that he is done fighting the charges.

Quotes:

"There comes a point in every man's life when he has to say, 'Enough is enough.' For me, that time is now," Armstrong said in a statement sent to The Associated Press. He called the USADA investigation an "unconstitutional witch hunt."

"USADA cannot assert control of a professional international sport and attempt to strip my seven Tour de France titles," he said. "I know who won those seven Tours, my teammates know who won those seven Tours, and everyone I competed against knows who won those seven Tours."

"I have been dealing with claims that I cheated and had an unfair advantage in winning my seven Tours since 1999," he said. "The toll this has taken on my family and my work for our foundation and on me leads me to where I am today -- finished with this nonsense."

"There is zero physical evidence to support (the) outlandish and heinous claims. The only physical evidence here is the hundreds of (doping) controls I have passed with flying colors."

Did anybody see this coming?  Is he really going to go out with a whimper?

From a legal standpoint, I must say that I'm a little disappointed.  Both sides appeared to be prepared (and willing) to litigate any issue imaginable.  I think the WADA Code would have been put to the test, and some language appears too vague to have any clear meaning as it relates to this case (especially Article 15.3).  I expect to see those shortcomings addressed as the Code is revised, but I was looking forward to watching the process play out in what would have likely been an unprecedented manner for anti-doping cases.

70 comments:

  1. Adios, Lance. I have come to the conclusion that a big part of the fun for Armstrong has been his ability to get away with it and flaunt it in the faces of those who suspected him. He was rather amazing, in that regard.
    Ten witnesses saying that they saw him doping....
    Imagine a murder trial with ten witnesses saying they saw the guy do it. Is, "They're all jealous of me" going to work as a defense? I hope they actually come out and present some of the evidence. It must have been reasonably incriminating for Lance to just bail.

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    1. Which is also why the witch-hunt argument is so misleading. If the FBI investigate a cold case, or a crime that happened 12 years ago, are they on a witch-hunt against the criminals involved?

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  2. I interpreted the following to mean the fight is not necessarily over:

    "Armstrong said his decision did not mean he would accept USADA's sanctions. His lawyers threatened a lawsuit if USADA proceeded, arguing the agency must first resolve a dispute with the International Cycling Union over whether the case should be pursued.

    [...]

    Instead, Armstrong attorney Tim Herman fired a letter off to USADA Thursday that suggested Armstrong would sue if USADA moves to sanction him. "You are on notice that if USADA makes any public statement claiming, without jurisdiction, to sanction Mr. Armstrong, or to falsely characterize Mr. Armstrong's reasons for not requesting an arbitration as anything other than a recognition of UCI jurisdiction and authority, USADA and anyone involved in the making of the statement will be liable," Herman wrote.

    Herman told USADA it could submit its case against Armstrong to UCI or the international Court of Arbitration for Sport, based in Switzerland."

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    1. Agreed. I'm sure they have a strategy moving forward. Apparently instead of fighting the issue of jurisdiction, his legal team is just planning to assume that UCI (and not USADA) has jurisdiction. Even so, I'm getting the feeling that Lance doesn't feel like he can win in arbitration. He's afraid to fight the issue of jurisdiction in arbitration for fear that it will ultimately lead to a fight of the case on the merits. It seems risky, however, because I assume that his only redress from this point forward is to fight jurisdiction. His window for addressing the charges has passed (or will in a few hours). Whatever avenue he chooses to pursue in the future would likely prevent him any chance of fighting the case on the merits.

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  3. I find it most telling that Lance is so emphatic on how its impossible to win such an unfair, rigged arbitration. Is he psychic? Has he faced such an arbitration before? Had he gone through it and then said it was rigged, he might have at least been more credible.

    Interesting he wants to keep his secrets to the grave with him. Never come clean and feel the absolute freedom of knowing no one can "out" him anymore. stubborn ass!

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  4. I think that Lance now recognises that he is likely to lose the war, should it be played out through the processes of the law. By saying that he "gives up", and hands back his Tour de France titles, he is not admitting that he is a doper but that he has been driven to concede through the persecution of the USADA. In so doing, he becomes a martyr - and avoids being found a cheat. His fans can continue to believe in him. He is beaten, but he at least achieves that tactical victory. The truth is never proven before the courts or other arbitration.

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    1. Most importantly of the points you refer to, he can continue claiming that "hundreds" of drug tests show that he is innocent, and the world will never get to see 10 of his teammates state that they saw him systematically using a variety of PEDs (while likely simultaneously discussing their own use).

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    2. Correct me if I am wrong, but there are many positive tests from Switzerland and France that were covered up by the UCI and others I'm sure. Armstrong could take down some real higher-up figures with him if he decides to fight. I hope he does try to fight and dredges up all the crooked dealings going on behind the scenes in cycling.

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    3. Which other covered up tests are you talking about?

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    4. Links for Switzerland test and cover-up:
      http://velonews.competitor.com/2012/06/news/usada-letter-paints-dark-picture-of-armstrong-era_223925

      http://theaustintimes.com/2011/05/armstrong-accuser-says-uci-covered-up-positive-test/

      http://sports.espn.go.com/oly/cycling/news/story?id=6614413

      Links for positive tests in France and cover-up:
      http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/25/sports/cycling/antidoping-officials-move-to-wipe-out-armstrongs-titles.html?pagewanted=all
      "Also in the mid-2000s, a French newspaper reported that six of Armstrong’s urine samples from the 1999 Tour had tested positive retroactively for the banned blood booster EPO. The strict standards for laboratory testing were not followed on those samples, so nothing ever came of those results."
      *******************************************************
      This is an obvious multi-million dollar slam dunk case of slander for Lance if this newspaper lied. Cycling is his profession and a false accusation of doping would incur a huge settlement. So any news agency that would report this will darn sure have their facts straight or else heads would roll.

      http://www.canberratimes.com.au/sport/cycling/defiant-to-the-bitter-end-20120824-24rvo.html?skin=text-only
      "He said again and again that he had never tested positive - although he did test positive at the 1999 Tour for a corticosteroid, for which he produced a backdated doctor's prescription."
      **************************************************
      Backdated medical paperwork stinks of a cover-up to me.


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    5. Sorry I thought you meant that other riders had had positive tests covered up.

      Emma O'Reilly, who was Armstrong's masseuse during the 1999 TDF said very early on that the TUE/Prescription was written after the positive test to cover it up.

      You ought to check out the SCA court case that Armstrong was involved in. That brings in Armstrong's pre-Ferrari doping.

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  5. Armstrong is too cheap to pay lawyers to fight a battle he knows that he will lose. It's too bad because I really wanted some serious skeletons coming out of the closet from the biggest doping scandal to date that the authorities actually took action on. A successful scapegoating of Armstrong could maybe scare out some of the big dopers out of tennis too. Being a champion means nothing if your legacy and winnings are taken away from you. Good riddance Lance but I really wanted to see an example made out of him. A lengthy court battle could have really exposed the problem of doping in big money professional sports for all to see so the stupid denials can finally stop.

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  6. http://www.velonation.com/News/ID/12712/Travis-Tygart-Interview-Armstrongs-results-from-August-1st-1998-will-be-stripped.aspx

    This is the most interesting thing i've read since the news broke. Apparently information can still come out after the other two have finished their arbitration. So, some of the allegations and evidence may still see the light of day.

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  7. Just briefly, a tennis question:

    Could a Grand Slam winner be stripped of a title? How would the ITF handle this?

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  8. It's clear that LA was asked by UCI to drop the fighting to protect the UCI management and prevent an even bigger mess. As both were going to fall, LA cut the rope to save UCI still hanging on the cliff.

    It's also to prevent the evidence to come out to the public......that is linked to the above point as well.

    The media has a huge part of responsibilty in this, trying to sell us ridiculous stories...same thing in tennis.

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    1. Lance would never take a hit to protect someone else.

      He has always been all about Lance and his own innocence.


      AS for the USADA, they need to proceed with the case, present all the evidence and clearly show the guilt of Lance regardless of whether Armstrong is involved.

      What a joke to stop the proceedings now.

      It is important to get the truth, and that justice be SEEN to be done. By not airing the evidence that will not be the case.

      I can't believe USADA doesnt see that, nor does the UCI.

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  9. This is classic Armstrong. By refusing to go to a hearing it means he and his minions in the press can present it as a witch-hunt. I suspect that there is a lot of evidence against him, because it doesn't go to a hearing it means that none of it is ever aired. Armstrong and his minions can keep on repeating 'never failed a test' (a lie) etc

    The result is that most people stay woefully ignorant of Armstrong and he is able to spin the story to his hearts content. Expect Armstrong to start appearing on the chat shows very soon.

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    1. Not only that, he doesn't run the risk of being found guilty if there is any trial or hearing. Also, the USADA doesn't have a chance to air their case in public (we here know most of the details but the majority of the public doesn't).

      Like you said, he can go around the country and claim that this was a "witch hunt" and keep repeating that he "never" tested positive.

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    2. I think he has also seen the hit that the likes of Bonds and Clemens have taken when their cases have hit court.

      For example from the Bonds trial:

      "Just a few days into the trial and baseball's home run king already has been made to look like a selfish, violent, small-balled, sexually incompetent philanderer."

      http://espn.go.com/espnw/news-opinion/6274616/barry-bonds-trial-how-em-barry-ssing

      Stuff like this is what people remember, they remember that Clemens didn't like being injected in the ass and his wife took HGH.

      Armstrong doesn't want any of his skeletons coming out of the closet, so this is the best way to cut it off. I think he thinks that with the aid of his friends in the media they can portray this as a witch-hunt and turn him into the victim.

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    3. I would like to see Sheryl Crow take the stand...

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    4. And I am quite sure Armstrong wants to make sure that Sheryl Crow and Kristin never get anywhere near the witness stand.

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    5. This is a nice summary of the sequence of events that possibly will unfold for LA.

      http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/more-sports/lance-armstrong-fall-grace-beginning-usada-strips-tour-de-france-titles-article-1.1144779

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  10. Seems like he's conceded he had no chance in a hearing - too much would come out.

    Better strategy to try shift the jurisdiction. Even if that fails and he's stripped, he can maintain the pretense that it's all a "witch hunt", and keep his profile and all those fans.

    Rather harder to do that if you have a long public process of team mates and assistants, one after the other, saying they doped with him, they saw him doping, they got the dope for him etc etc. So much would come out, drip drip drip into the news every week. His image would be utterly ruined, not even the most dedicated fan would believe.

    Judging by twitter, there are a lot of fans willing to just settle their opinion on a "witch hunt".

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    1. Good point about the "witch hunt" accusation. It pisses me off that the average person is too lazy to even acknowledge the mountain range of evidence that proves Lance's doping. At least now none of us have to suffer the idea that history will look back at Armstrong being a cancer surviving "hero". Real heroes don't repeatedly cheat to win. I can forgive a doper who does it once or twice and then learns their lesson. But somebody like Armstrong who does it repeatedly and then has the nerve to accuse the people calling him out really makes me sick to my stomach.

      One doper down, thousands to go...

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    2. Lance Armstrong is also a media darling, expect most of the media to follow along the "It's a witch hunt!" mantra Lance and his groupies are pushing.

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    3. The BBC still batting for Armstrong.

      I love how the headline puts 'stripped' into inverted commas, and basically repeats the Armstrong argument without any sort of challenge.

      This kind of idiotic, moronic press coverage is the reason why dopers can get away with it.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/cycling/19369375

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/cycling/19365234

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  11. By the way, found this elsewhere, a list of the doping connections of those who finished behind Armstrong in his tdf victories:

    www.brettluelling.com/post/3435612945/armstrongs-tdf-victories


    Puts it into a nice context.

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    1. Everyone else has been busted. Now its his turn. Truth is he should have been popped in 1999 but wasn't because it was a 'good news' story.

      The context is - there is lots of doping in cycling (and most sports) lots of dopers get caught but often the most egregious dopers avoid punishment.

      Armstrong is Carl Lewis to Marco Pantani's Ben Johnson.

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  12. Can someone summarize for me why the USADA is bent on exposing one of the USA's most popular sports figures? Is there something going on in the background? Why this concerted push at this stage in the game when the French were saying he's a doper since 1999?

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    1. Because:

      i) He is a doper. It is the job of USADA to expose dopers.
      ii) The UCI failed to investigate him in 1999 (when he tested positive), 2001 (when he tested positive), 2008 when his 1999 samples tested positive.
      iii) The US Justice Dept decided after political pressure from Armstrong to drop the investigation into fraud related to the doping.
      iv) The UCI failed to follow up on the evidence provided by former team-mates, support staff and others into doping by Armstrong at USP/Discovery/Astana.

      The reason why it is happening now is because the a number of people who previously upheld omerta have decided to speak out.

      Studying Armstrong bio-passport from his comeback has provided further evidence to show that he was doping 2009-2010.

      USADA are simply doing their job and showing that one of the USA's most popular sports figure is a liar, a doper and a fraud.

      As Johnny Rotten once said 'ever had the feeling you've been cheated?'

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    2. Great, thanks for the quick, concise reply. Much appreciated.

      Well I hope his sheep-like followers wake up but I somehow doubt it.

      As Issac Newton said:

      “I can calculate the motion of heavenly bodies, but not the madness of people.”

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    3. The job if USADA is to enforce anti-doping rules.

      In this case USADA pieced together evidence that IN THE OPINION OF USADA, LA was involved in doping. This evidence includes biological profile data as well as witness statements from up to 10 people. That is 10 people who were prepared to testify under oath as to what they saw or what they participated in concerning LA.

      USADA put their case to LA and said LA can either accept sanction (that is not contest the charges) or LA can have his day in court before CAS just like Landis.

      USADA is not judge and jury. But they are investigator and prosecutor. But CAS is the court of arbitration that hears the evidence and would have ruled either for USADA or for LA.

      LA chose to not fight the charges..in effect pleading no contest. He would have had to impeach the testimony of up to 10 witnesses against him before CAS. Not impossible if the witnesses…all 10… are not telling the truth.

      So LA gets the penalty.

      Pretty simple really.

      Note: I added the bold piece above to the post i deleted….

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  13. in case somebody still raises the " 'my hero' hasn't tested positive yet", here's a nice summary of all the holes in the testing regime, from the testing experts themselves

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/25/sports/cycling/antidoping-officials-move-to-wipe-out-armstrongs-titles.htm

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  14. Stunning graphic of Tour de France top 10 finishers and doping.

    http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2012/08/24/sports/top-finishers-of-the-tour-de-france-tainted-by-doping.html

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    1. And in other news the Pope is revealed to be Catholic.

      That list is actually wrong and incomplete because they haven't included the Rabobank riders implicated in doping scandals nor have they included Spanish riders implicated in Puerto but not convicted because of Spanish incompetence/corruption.

      If you take 1998 as an example the riders only 3 riders not implicated or busted are: Nardello (8th), Huelot (13th) and Van de Wouwer (16th)

      Richard - do you still have confidence in the UCI as an organization committed to removing doping from the sport?


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    2. My view remains that IF's should delegate all anti-doping duties to NADO's like USADA.

      UCI could have never investigated and prosecuted LA.

      But an organisation like USADA sure can.

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    3. That's nice but that isn't what I asked you.

      The question was:

      Do you still have confidence that the UCI as an organization is committed to removing doping from the sport?

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    4. You talk commitment. I don't know what their commitment is. I talk capability. As I know what capability is needed to remove doping from sport.

      And UCI nor any IF has the capability to deal with serious doping. NADO;'s should in my view manage all anti-doping and sports should run sports.

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    5. Richard - stop playing the politician and say what you think.

      Do you have confidence in the UCI with regard to anti-doping?

      You've previously talked up the UCI and Anne Gripper. Do you accept that your faith in them was misplaced?

      Would you trust the UCI to manage an anti-doping program/investigation under the current UCI senior leadership?

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    6. I don't know how much more apolitical I can be that saying that IF's, all IF's should delegate all their anti-doping functions to NADO's as IF's don't have the capability, experience, or resources to tackle cases like LA.

      This is all about capability and IF's don't have it compared to substantive NADO's like USADA, UKAD, ASADA or AFLD amongst many others.

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    7. Well you could try to answer the question instead of avoiding it like a politician. The questions can be answered with Yes or No answers.

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    8. No I do not think that IF's should be running anti doping program's. Not UCi. not any. It should all be run by NADO's.

      I won't touch your trust argument. I don't know the people at UCi. But I do know that regardless of their commitment, they would struggle to prosecute a case like LA.

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    9. Do you have confidence in the UCI regarding anti-doping?

      Do you accept that this case has once again highlighted the conflicts of interest inherent in allowing sporting federations to manage anti-doping and that there is considerable scope for corruption and backsliding?

      Do you think that the next big anti-doping move (after setting up WADA and the use of CAS) has to be the removal of anti-doping programs from the remit of the sports involved and the removal of disciplining dopers from the sporting and national federations? That is to say, instead of CAS acting as a court of last resort, it instead becomes the authority to hear and discipline doping cases?

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    10. Gee.

      My view is that NADO's should run all anti doping program's. I have said that ever since joining this forum.

      I do support CAS as the body appropriate for hearing cases and determining sanctions if any. NADO's are there to investigate but an independent body needs to hear the evidence from both the NADO and the athlete. I think CAS does that mostly pretty well. They hand down independent decisions.

      But NADO's should never be judge and jury.

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    11. All I'd like is for you to answer the questions and to not obfuscate, or given answers to questions that haven't been asked. You are worse than a politician when it comes to getting you to express a position. I guess this is what being an administrator does to you. You are more concerned about how you sound than about solutions.

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    12. Moonax no I don't think so. I avoid subjective assessments of sports and people I don't even know. I focus on subjective assessments of organisations based on what I do know.

      So when I am asked "do you trust UCI to run an anti-doping program" I can't answer that as I don't even know who is running the UCI anti-doping program to assess my trust in this epeople. I have not been a fly on the wall of various matters UCI were involved in to judge how they made their internal decisions or why they didn't make certain decisions. Indeed I am not even close enough to know what was or was not those decisions.

      But I do know capability. I know what sports like UCI have in their armoury to fight doping. And I also know what government bodies like USADA or ASADA have in their armoury.

      So I don't have confidence in any sport running its own anti-doping program as sports do not have the capability, experience, resource or ability to manage risk to investigate and take forward big cases. That is my objective view and how we reach the same conclusion but for different reasons.

      The reason I stay objective is that I have been on the receiving end of quite personal attacks over my handling of anti-doping matters from commentators who held opinions based on no facts of the cases. Whilst I am in the middle of every minute detail of the case and nose to nose with the player and his barristers. And it really hurts to read stuff about what you are doing that is just so blatantly wrong and unrecognisable from what as an anti-dopign program manager you are actually dealing with.

      So I wil not attack people I don't know. But I will stand up and say that sports should hand anti-doping programs to NADO's.

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  15. http://www.theonion.com/articles/havent-we-all-done-steroids-in-a-way,29317/

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    1. I really enjoyed that "opinion written by Armstrong".

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  16. http://www.theonion.com/articles/lance-armstrong-lets-down-single-person-who-still,29313/

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  17. This whole affair begs the question: will something like this ever be exposed in the sport of tennis?

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    1. It's impossible to say for sure, but history in other sports gives some hope of at least the recognition in public that there is a problem (if there is one). Nobody is likely to speak out as long as they are competing, but they may do so when they can gain financially from it after the fact. Even Agassi did so in addressing his drug abuse. It's happened to some degree in baseball, though some of those players remain in somewhat of a "gray" area. It's obviously happened in cycling on multiple occasions.

      Judging from what we've seen in the past 15-20 years in other sports, if there is a "culture of doping" in tennis (which wouldn't have to mean that every single player is doping; just a lot of them), I would expect it to leak out in some manner over the next 15-20 years. Whether anyone can be punished or the information will be enough to definitively link anyone to PEDs doesn't get much clarification from history, as the Armstrong case shows us.

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    2. As we all know, this Lance saga is far from playing itself out, especially if his old, now ex, pals Frankie and Betsy Andreu have their way and say...

      http://www.freep.com/article/20120825/COL38/308250057/Once-good-friends-with-Lance-Armstrong-Dearborn-couple-says-he-admitted-using-drugs

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    3. Betsy is an absolute star and one of the unsung heroines of anti-doping. She is the one who really forced Frankie to speak out and has refused to be cowed by Armstrong's abuse towards her. She has supported Frankie through thick and thin.

      If it wasn't for the likes of Betsy omerta would have triumphed.

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    4. I shouldn't have read the comment section of that article. Some of those Americans are as dumb as a slice of bread.

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  18. It is worth noting that The Hog (Brunyeel) and others have not collapsed as Armstrong have done and so their cases will be heard at a later date. So I assume the evidence will come out then and the same witnesses will be called to talk about their evidence there.

    Interesting blog summary here: http://inrng.com/2012/08/lance-armstrong-quits/#more-10570

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    1. That's a good write-up. The way they analyze Article 8.3 is technically correct, but I don't think Lance (or UCI) is willing to admit that USADA has "results management responsibility." Therefore, UCI won't see a refusal to strip the titles as a failure to comply with the Code.

      Of course, I'm sure Lance will just let it go since "enough is enough," right...

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    2. The UCI might not but surely it is up to WADA to decide if the UCI is in compliance?

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    3. Right, but I assume that could potentially lead to more litigation if UCI is so inclined. Maybe they just fold. I still think UCI has a legitimate argument around jurisdiction if they choose to press the issue. That's not the same as saying that I assume UCI would win on the issue of jurisdiction in court or arbitration, but the language of 15.3 is ambiguous as it relates to this case. Some of that will also be determined by exactly what evidence USADA puts in its written justification for its decision to strip him. As long as Samples which weren't administered by USADA are involved in the case stating that a violation was committed, it's not a clear cut case for jurisdiction.

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    4. Of course USADA has responsibility for LA. He is a US athlete for goodness sake.

      In the non-analytical area it is first cab off the rank and LA is a US athlete being managed by the US Anti-Doping Agency who had the experience, patience and capability to develop the evidence and take it forward.

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    5. Well, UCI disagrees with that. WADA gets to make its own rules (the Code), but it also has to follow its on rules. If UCI thinks that's not happening, I don't see why this couldn't end up in CAS. If you want to say that it's clear that USADA has jurisdiction here, that's fine, but explain that based on 15.3. That language is vague, and I'm not aware of any case that directly speaks to the evidence that was going to be put on in this case. If samples taken at the behest of UCI were to be used as evidence by USADA, then jurisdiction under 15.3 is not a slam dunk for USADA.

      I agree that there are instances where USADA would without a doubt have jurisdiction. If USADA took a sample that came back positive, they would have jurisdiction (there's no feasible argument against that). If USADA were basing its case entirely on non-analytical evidence of which it was the "discoverer," they would have jurisdiction (there's no feasible argument against that). Since UCI disputes who the original "discoverer" was, and UCI believes samples are being used that would give it jurisdiction in an analytical case, jurisdiction in this case is somewhat murky. Maybe 15.3 meant to say that the provision about samples being "involved" was only supposed to relate to positive samples, but it doesn't say that.

      I'm not arguing for or against either side. USADA and WADA have counter-arguments. I'm also not commenting on which side has the better arguments. Your opinion makes it sound like UCI doesn't have a "straight-faced" argument to make, and I disagree with that. I also don't have perfect knowledge of the evidence that USADA was planning to use. I don't think anybody outside of the immediate proceedings does at the moment, and the details of that evidence may alter the interpretation of jurisdiction in this case. If you think the issue is open-and-shut, please explain why with specific code sections as they relate to the evidence of this case.

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    6. Happy to share my view having been responsible for operating a NADO under 15.3 for 5 years.

      The LA matter does not involve an adverse analytical finding. It involves a series of samples collected by various bodies that form a biological profile as well as evidence from witnesses. In such cases the prosecuting organisations needs both sets of evidence to get a case up past CAS.

      USADA have collected this evidence from various Bodies as well as its own collected samples. So you have to ask who is best placed to apply all that evidence against LA. USADa is of course.

      But there is more to it than that. UCI had opportunity to prosecute this case and did not. Now that USADA has secured a lifetime ban UCI needs to make a decision. UCI has 30 days to appeal the life time ban imposed by USADA. Yep UCI has every right under the code to appeal the ban before CAS if they so choose.

      But why would they want to do that? What do they think the ban should be? Even LA isn't interested in appealing so why would UCI be interested?

      And there s a final thing. When UCI has results management responsibility, they always pass the matter back to the national federation. The national federation passes it onto to the NADO. So even if UCI did take this case forward they would have passed it to USA Cycling who are obligated to pass it to USADA.

      I know this because this is what happened to several Australian elite cyclists busted abroad. They got passed back to cycling Australia who by law must pass them to ASADA.

      So one has to ask. What is UCI after? USADA got a win. LA has accepted the ban. WADA who write the rule are happy with usada's jurisdiction. And if UCI is at all unhappy, they can take USADA to CAS seeking a change in the ban (to what?).

      This matter is over from an anti-doping perspective.

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    7. We both know what UCI is after. I'm just saying that if you've read any of Fat Pat's letters, I think he makes some interesting arguments.

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    8. One thing I take issue with is your statement that "UCI had opportunity to prosecute this case and did not." That's completely irrelevant in the discussion of jurisdiction, because UCI is arguing that it should've been the only organization (relative to USADA) with the right to bring the case. If USADA doesn't have jurisdiction (and I'm not saying that they don't), it doesn't matter whether or not UCI already had a chance to bring the case. In either case, USADA wouldn't have the right to bring the case. That's the crux of the argument that UCI would be making.

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    9. Mrn when it comes to so called non-analytical matters (and LA is a non analytical matter as there is not positive test) then whichever ADO uncovered sufficient evidence of doping has jurisdiction.

      The LA evidence brought forward by USADA is hardly new. But USADA went out and actually investigated them. They spoke to witnesses. They collated the biological profile results from multiple sources. They were dealing with a US athlete and they took the case forward.

      UCI to my knowledge has not appointed investigators to look into LA. Certainly none of the potential witnesses have indicated they will only appear for UCI. This indeed is not unusual. Often witnesses will not come forward to the sport itself as they fear the sport will not act. But such witnesses will turn to an independent third party like a USADA or ASADA.

      And even if UCI did investigate LA and decide to take a case forward, under the UCI rules they always refer doping allegations back to the national federation (in this case USA Cycling) who then must refer it to the NADO (in this case USADA). Just as how it happened with the Contador case (who was cleared by the Spanish cycling federation I recall prompting UCI to appeal).

      So all roads lead back to USADA.

      This is all much ado about nothing. Genie is out of the bottle. USADA took the LA case forward and he accepted the ban. WADA support USADA. UCI has a single course of action remaining which is to appeal the USADA sanction decision at CAS.

      And why would they do that when even LA has not.

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  19. As reported by 'Le Monde', Armstrong was tipped before each test, or at least always managed to delay the administration of the test for about 20min to do what's necessary to pass.
    Google Armstrong tipped off (I can't copy / paste on this blog when using the iPad)

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    1. Correction: He was tipped off, not tipped. He tipped his informers

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    2. He was tipped off before the tests, and topped off afterwards.

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    3. That does not surprise me at all. I wouldn't be surprised if the same thing is happening in other sports.

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  20. This Lance Armstrong related news article had me dying with laughter.
    http://news.yahoo.com/djokovic-disappointed-lance-armstrong-downfall-213452625--ten.html

    Classic case of the pot calling the kettle black if there ever was one. How Djokovic said this quote with a straight face blows my mind:

    "In the end we are all seeking to have pure sport. I'm happy that in tennis we do not have that many cases and we are trying to keep that going to keep tradition and to protect the integrity of the sport.

    That's something that sends a strong message about our sport also to young kids because they look up for heroes and they look for role models."

    So much for the deterrent effect of busting Armstrong without a full trial and airing of all the mounds of evidence. All in all, I'm glad that Lance is going through this process and I hope that there is more to come in the actions of the USADA doing what it is supposed to be doing.

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  21. I think Djokovic has somehow been made to repent after his annus mirabilis of 2011. Perhaps even the ITF began to sit up and take notice. They probably counsellled him severely or tested his ass non stop.

    Now he's agreed to become anti-doping poster boy for a while.

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