"Did We Know This?" – The Hot New Cycling Game.

Nov 10 2007

Instead of reporting on cycling news this week, I’m going to turn it into a fun, interactive quiz game called “Did We Know Know This?” I’ll present you with a news story from the past few days, and then you try and guess whether or not we knew it already. All set? Great! Here we go:

Question #1: Bo Hamburger admited to using EPO during his cycling career. Did We Know This?
Answer: Yes. In fact, Hamburger was the first professional cyclist to return a positive EPO test, back in 2001. Months later, he became the first athlete to be cleared of an EPO positive, because his B sample wasn’t quite positive enough. However, Hamburger maintains he only doped between 1995 and 1997, most likely to keep his feud with the Danish Cycling Federation alive and kicking.

Question #2: Hamburger’s countryman, Michael Rasmussen, admitted to being in Italy – not Mexico – during the pre-Tour drug tests he missed. Did We Know This?
Answer: Yes. Pretty much everyone but the enfrescoed Madonnas have come forward to say The Chicken was in Italy for most of June. However, Rasmussen claims that his team knew this, and is still grumpy about being railroaded out of the TdF last July. Look for a future “Did We Know This” appearance from the Dane concerning a shoebox full of artifical hemoglobin.

Question #3. Rasmussen’s fellow ’07 TdF ejectee Patrick Sinkewitz testified before the German Cycling Federation that he used drugs through much of his professional career. Did We Know This?
Answer: Yes. Sinkewitz confessed readily to his positive testosterone test during the ’07 TdF. IHT and the AP lose serious points for continuing to refer to him as “accused”. The EPO and blood doping were a new revelation, but, in a bright spot, were stopped after T-Mobile’s new testing program was imposed.

Question #4: The UCI says Mick Rogers is not doping. Did We Know This?
Answer: Yes. While one can never decisively prove a negative in this regard, no allegations had (as far as I know) been leveled against the Aussie. If anything, the guy has a reputation as getting doped against.

Question #5: Team Slipstream introduced its 2008 Jersey recently. Did We Know This?
Answer: No. We got totally burned. But none of us as badly as this guy, who thought his design would be touring Europe next summer.

Question #6: Adidas announced it would no longer sponsor the T-Mobile cycling team due to recurrent doping scandals in the sport. Did we know this?

Answer: No. Adidas’ commitment to clean sport runs no deeper than the bottom line. Recurring doping sagas involving Marion Jones, Justin Gatlin and others weren’t enough to keep them off a $200 million sponsorship of the 2012 Olympic games. Nor were the BALCO scandal and Jason Giambi’s testimony enough to put the German shoe giant off a long running contract with the New York Yankees. The decision to cease sponsorship is especially dickheaded, as Sinkewitz testimony reveals that T-Mobile’s anti-doping policy makes it one of the few squads in any sport to actively dissuade doping.

So there you have it, folks. Only two of six news stories were actually new this week. Come back next time so you can pretend you didn’t know Ullrich’s personal coach was aware of his doping, or that Rabobank was completely blameless in the Rasmussen Saga.

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