Created in 2006, a satirical lifestyle cycling blog aimed to promote Ohio Valley Cycling, Trail Advocacy and Junior Development written by Joe Bellante, a racer for BioWheels in Cincinnati and freelance writer who's work has appeared in Velonews, XXC and Cyclocross Magazines. Thanks for reading.
The elephant is in the room riding a tandem and twirling a
soccer ball on his trunk, and only CNN last night got a glimpse of it.It’s bigger than Oprah.It’s bigger than Lance’s ego.I watched Mike and Mike on ESPN this
morning.While they summarized the
interview well, they quickly breezed through and went right on to the bigger,
easier and tastier story of the day, the poor Notre Dame football player who
got catfished.I don’t blame ESPN.It has to hurt when the self proclaimed world
wide leader in sports gets scooped by Deadspin, the world wide leader in
telling Donald Trump to go F himself.Not
to mention, catfishing a college football player is way more interesting to the
majority of viewers than doping in a sport that only makes the news for three
weeks in July.But, what if there’s a
bigger fish to fry?
My TOC Photos Take on New Meaning
What if there is systematic doping in Soccer, Football,
Baseball, Basketball…sports where the money is bigger, the fame more
intoxicating and the rules are way more lax?
What if your kid, your nephew, the high school phenom next door doesn’t
have a shot at making the team unless Mom starts making room in the fridge pronto
to store some blood? On Oprah, you may
see a mature man in his early 40’s, but think about how young he was when it
started to get real.
Who’s asking these questions Sally Jenkins? Isn’t it obvious that if Lance says he saw
himself as being on a level playing field, that this is way bigger than we can
imagine? C’mon it’s cycling. By salary comparison, most cyclists don’t
make in a career what most football players make in a year. Still, Lance alludes to a peloton 200 or so
deep, all with their doctors and support staffs systematically doping, for at
least 7 years. Doping has to be engrained
deeper in other sports. Maybe that’ll
come out on part two tonight with the 2nd place world wide leader in
sports, the Oprah Winfrey Network.
What's behind those drawn shades?
Let me help pull the wool jersey from over their eyes. It couldn’t have stopped with Lance. It couldn’t have stopped with baseball player
hearings on Capitol Hill. It must be
still happening. It can’t be one or two
bad apples. It’s has to be orchards upon
orchards. Sure cycling now has the
biological passport and out of competition testing, but come on. They don’t do a whole lot of that in football
or baseball, where penalties are measured in days not years. I’ve never seen a doping control tent at a
ball game stadium. History has shown us
that doping has a way to stay a wheel length ahead of the knock on the door. It can’t be only cycling. Who’s shining the light on soccer, football,
baseball, basketball? Who’s nosing
around those doctor’s offices? Who’s
swinging by the baseball team locker room for a look? What’s going on in the college team hotel
before the big game? What are those kids
really doing after school?
Damn I Loved George
Maybe it is up to Deadspin to dig it up and steal some more
world wide thunder. Last night we saw
the fastest guy from the fastest team admit to years of systematic doping. While Lance danced around giving “the look” to
specific others, journalists could pull up any team roster from any sport and find
some names, players, doctors, trainers to start with. February sweeps are right around the corner. If anything, Lance proved it’s not a witch hunt
and more likely shooting fish in barrel.
When you discover that doping likely didn’t come to a
magical halt with cycling in 2005, and probably takes place in other sports,
sports with crazy rock star money, sports with much more lax penalties for
doping, then you’re getting at something.
Then take a look at how these athletes get to the pro level. Who missed the cut? Who’s next in line to make the pro jump? Look at the feeder leagues. Look at college sports. Seriously, take a look at high school.
Right now there are talented 14 year old kids out there who
might have a chance to go pro, only they need to be much bigger, much faster
and have much more endurance to compete with all the drug users and enablers that
currently occupy the team rosters and staffs.
Put your arm around one of those kids, read the “side effects” of EPO,
Testosterone, and Steroids and ask yourself, does it really matter if everyone
is doing it?