Thursday, October 12, 2006

12 Angry Men

It's Up! Yep, against all sane (that is, my) advice, Floyd Landis has posted a handsome powerpoint, a spirited attack, and 300-odd pages of material on his personal website, most of which seems to point out the French are really, really crappy recordkeepers--which is certainly a sin against bureaucracy--but not point out why Landis is actually innocent--which would certainly be the relevant sin against Landis. *What* have I been telling you for months about the appearance of nitpicky lawyerly weaselling, Floyd? Aaaaaarrrrrrgggggghhhhhh!

It's Out!: Yep, in the wake of the Spanish court's order that the national cycling federations not use any Operacion Puerto documents against riders until its own investigation is complete--which regarding the boy at hand were pretty lame anyway I gather--the Italian Olympic Committee did indeed formally recommend that the (not necessarily unjustified) witchhunt against dreamy-eyed man-candy Ivan Basso be dropped. And, as expected, pending talks with Bjarne Riis, the happy babe magnet may indeed ride this weekend. Right on Ivan's lawyer! Of course, the bloodied but unbowed bottom feeders over at UCI still say they're gonna drag his sorry @$$ into arbitration anyway, but then, with the fat new paychecks he's sure to reap in hand (either from CSC or someone else), hey, he can afford to spread the wealth to his paid minions. Go Ivan!

Yawn: In other impotent crybaby news, FDJ's Marc Madiot doesn't want any of the Op Puerto riders back in the peloton at all, particularly Basso and Ullrich. As for Jan, "one will quickly forget about him, as one has quickly forgotten Armstrong." Right, because if Paris-Tours hadn't been just this weekend, we'd all be remembering FDJ lately for...uhhhh...As for both the dirty dopers, Madiot's disgusted any team would negotiate with them, as, after all, "how do you sell this to the sponsors?" Well, how about you'll make millions of euros selling endless newspaper photos pimping the pearly-toothed visages of a shirtless-posing Basso or a curly-haired Ullrich in prominent team kit to swooning women and men alike on several continents?

Justice, Shalt Thou Pursue: Rabble-rousing Belgian senator Jean-Marie Dedecker's been kicked to the curb by his own party no less for "damaging their reputation"--not over his cycling crusade apparently, but then again, if you're a "Top 3 Beligan Cyclist" so subtly slandered by this guy, who cares?

Let's be clear, I'm not trying to be an apologist for any of these guys, most of whom probably are guilty of doping, and I feel more than sympathetic to any poor clean SOB in the peloton who's getting cheated. But with Boss Hogg and Roscoe P. Coltrane running the investigations, how sympathetic are we supposed to be to the arbitrary moronothon of a process that's going after these guys anyway? If you have the evidence, present it fairly. If you haven't, then condemn the system's technological flaws and the underhanded doctors who tell riders how to beat them all right, but don't convict whatever riders you've got a grudge against for possibly beating you with a bunch of snarky innuendo. For one thing, you're usurping my job. So put up or shut up already, you whiners!

Not About Dope: Finally, major belated props to Greg Lemond, who in a recent local apperance was more than generous to all who sought his time and general reflected glory. Between that, his amazing contributions to cycling (American in particular), and his relentlessly pleasing ability to tick off Lance Armstrong, what more could one want in a living legend?

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