Its nuts how fast the news is hitting Facebook. All the dudes who doped with Lance. I always try to refrain from talking about current events. But if your a cyclist, as I am, and if you blog, and I do, its hard not to blog about it.
First off, do I think he doped? Yes.
Secondly, am I a fan of Lance? Yes.
While at first I never believed this to be true. I mean, come on. he was the most tested dude in sports history and that's all I needed to know. End of story.
Then, USADA comes out to nail him and we all cry foul. How could you even think of this?
Call Lance a doper? How dare you. Where's the positive test?
Then, looking at the entire picture, I came to the conclusion that it was possible and maybe something inside me was upset with that. But... Lance is retired and that's all water under the bridge as far as I'm concerned. Lets all move on. That was then, this is now.
Then today, report after report hits the media like a two ton heavy thing.
USADA's report is out. And the list of riders is staggering. NOW I'm upset. To me, this is not about Lance anymore. Its about Levi, TommyD, George and the rest of them. So then, everybody doped? Then why spend the money to nail Lance? Because he still denies? They all denied.
So why did they spill the beans now? Think about it. if you were a pro rider and doped in the past, that has to eat at you a ton. The proverbial skeleton in the closet. Apparently if your career is gangbusters you would be forced to live with that the rest of your life. Even after retirement you could still get called out.
Now, your offered a get out of jail free card. You get a chance to come clean for (almost) nothing. If in that position you would jump at the chance. So they all did. Except Lance.
So now what I ask?
I commend all the riders for coming clean. I really do think it was and is a brave thing. And in the long run might help cycling. However, please sit down and take your two year suspension please.
Bottom line is doping was a choice you all made. At that time I sure could understand making the choice to do so. But, a choice non the less. All you guys are no better than Lance. But no worse either.
Really the same in my book.
I don't care if you were my hero. I don't care if you said you stopped after 2006. I don't care if you still say you never doped and will never admit. All the same.
And dont think this is just a US Postal team issue. How many others in the pro peloton?
Many. I think.
Like I said prior, I'm still a fan of Lance. And still a fan of cycling. And still a fan of all the current list of riders who admitted. But, in my book its the same playing field for all. All need a two year ban like the rule says, to finish the cleaning of this sport. To show what happens to those who break the rules. No exceptions.
I've always been a fan of Tommy D and will be pumped to see his return to the peloton in 2014.
As far as the media is concerned, I hope they pull off this band aid fast and leave it be. This is a darkish day for cycling and it can only get brighter.
I could fill this post with link after link of info as it appeared. George's statement, Garmin\Sharp's statements and more. But I wont.
So here it is. The big fish is caught. And really, that's upsetting. But whats more upsetting is all the cool little fish that went down in order to catch the big fish.
All I can say is I hope this is all worth it.
I truly hope, in time, cycling grow stronger due to this.
Cuz if it does not it really was not worth it.
And this means one more thing.
Greg Lemond was right all along.