Latest posts by SideBurn

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Tri the beast. Exmoor.

Posted: 24/08/2015 at 13:09

Tri the Beast is being done on my training routes so I know them (run/bike) well; very picturesque very challenging. The roads can be busy if the weather is nice and slippery if it rains. Looks like it is their first year with this event...

I will be on nights that weekend so the unlucky will not see me that weekend 

Panarama - Allan Wells - Drugs

Posted: 21/08/2015 at 15:34
David Jones 39 wrote (see)


While this is all perfectly legal (those athletes named have been prescribed their usage as "TUE's")  a quick Google search of for example "Predisnone endurance" (one of the named asthma meds prescribed to a very famous cyclist, allegedly) shows why this should be a cause for concern.  The effect on amateur runners and cyclists of even short-term usage seems to be quite extraordinary, so one can only imagine what effect controlled, long-term usage must have on a professional endurance athlete.

All perfectly legal.

You would do better to look up the side effects of long term Prednisolone use. It is dangerous stuff in the wrong hands. I think its performance enhancing effects are questionable, it may be a 'Steroid' but it is very different from an Anabolic Steroid and should not have much effect on a healthy person.

There are hundreds of products out there, including drugs to mask other drugs along with experts who know how to cheat the tests. TUE's should be granted where necessary, but it does provide an opportunity to cheat. Salbutamol in particular is an interesting drug, used as a TUE....

Swimming question

Posted: 16/08/2015 at 08:10

I can only wish you good luck with this one  I can swim 2 km comfortably in a pool but in open water it is a whole new game and I was last out of the water in my last (sea) tri. 

I have to console myself with the fact that I can make up a lot of places on the bike and run. But to do this I need to not try too hard in the swim otherwise I get out of the water completely wrecked.

Try and take it easy in the swim, the swim is all about technique, by taking it easy you are likely to go faster and be still fresh for the bike leg

Panarama - Allan Wells - Drugs

Posted: 08/08/2015 at 09:04

The biggest scandal is that not all sports have the same testing regime; cycling has had the most thorough testing for years.

The result seems to be that cycling is seen as a 'dirty' sport, not much of a reward for their efforts to face up to the problem. 

Come on WADA, may the s**t storm commence!

Panarama - Allan Wells - Drugs

Posted: 03/08/2015 at 17:05

But it is worth remembering that the drugs themselves are quite expensive on the open market. I suspect even more expensive to get from a source that will not go blabbing to the newspapers.

Lance was reputed to pay his Dr $1M per year for his services, services that included ensuring he would not get caught/fail a test.

So point the finger at a suspect with deep pockets......

Panarama - Allan Wells - Drugs

Posted: 03/08/2015 at 17:00
Cheerful Dave wrote (see)

So is it cheating to have your spleen removed to boost your red blood cell count?

Just asking.

Good question; some people who have had their spleen removed take antibiotics prophylactically because it compromises your immune system. I don't understand how someone could be a top athlete with a compromised immune system!

If you did have your spleen removed to boost your performance then you need some sort of prize for commitment and being a '_ _ _ _ _ _' (insert suitable word here!)

Panarama - Allan Wells - Drugs

Posted: 03/08/2015 at 10:53

Who knows;

The person in question "looked shaken" as they told the Sunday Times they "never cheated".

Referring to Lance Armstrong's libel action against the Sunday Times following suggestions he doped during his Tour de France victories, which he later admitted and then had to repay the paper, the athlete added: “You print it and I sue you you won’t be getting any money back in future like Lance Armstrong — I promise you that.”

This is the response from the unnamed British athlete accused of cheating. Will he regret this statement?

Lance was caught, not by a failed test, but because lying to an American Grand Jury is a criminal offence. Doping is a civil offence.

Lance would not take a chance that in the future it may be possible to re-test the hundreds of samples taken from him over the years and prove his guilt. He would then have had to spend time in prison for perjury. 

Panarama - Allan Wells - Drugs

Posted: 03/08/2015 at 10:10

Having unusual values is not necessarily evidence of doping;

George Hincapie claimed to have a (real) medical condition that caused him to have naturally high values, which he admitted he artificially boosted.

Micheal Barry said his high values were because he had lost his Spleen in a motorcycle accident (loosing your Spleen will cause your body to increase your red blood cell count).

Being dehydrated can also cause your red blood cell count to be higher than normal, but will not effect the young/old balance in the blood.

Panarama - Allan Wells - Drugs

Posted: 03/08/2015 at 09:55

Just for information;

I have spent some time looking into blood doping (academic interest only; honest). EPO is a hormone that occurs naturally in a human body in response to low oxygen levels. It was discovered in the early 20th Century and was available to 'use' but only from 'human' sources.

In the early '90's it was synthesized (created in a laboratory) and if you read Laurent Fignon's autobiography he seems to suggest that it was used from the mid '90's by cyclists. He says that he suddenly found he could not keep up with back-markers who seemed to be hardly trying, with talk in the bunch of, 'undetectable drugs'.

At the time it was impossible to test people for artificial EPO, particularly as you would have to be tested within 24 hours of taking the drug. At the time the authorities had to admit defeat and limit the use of EPO by saying that athletes with more than 50% red blood cells in their blood must 'rest' for two weeks for 'health reasons' it is thought that many cyclists have died as a result of their blood being too thick, causing blood clots.

This is still the case; but...

The blood passport allows testers to look at the composition of blood. Blood cells only 'live' for a fixed amount of time and 'grow old'. Someone who lives in one place will have a very consistent number of young and old cells. However if you take EPO you will have lots of young cells. If you take a blood transfusion you will have lots of old cells.

Comparing an athletes values with 'normal' values will provide evidence of artificial doping. This is now state of the art testing. But athletes can still boost their values naturally and of course they tend not to stay in one place or in particular 'altitude'.


Or if your Doctor messes up you could have two different blood groups! (Tyler Hamilton)

Cyclist ruding on pavement runs down child

Posted: 03/08/2015 at 09:24

The good old, "Is a law that is not enforced a law?" question.....

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