Friday, February 15, 2008

Degenerate Hospital

Luck o' the Spanish: so I'm guessing a good half of the peloton's got its chamois in a twist over the Spanish court's decision yesterday to reopen the Op Puerto investigation, at least with regard to blood doc Manuel Batres and Nobel prize aspirant Dr. Eufemiano "Gyno to the Male Stars" Fuentes (because I know every time *I've* got a medical problem, I, as a woman, run straight to a prostate specialist). Lucky for at least a few of the boys, it's not yet being reopened as to Liberty Seguros mastermind Manolo "Briefcase" Saiz, who, having contented himself with blaming Roberto Heras's voracious drug-snorting appetite for all the team's problems, is likely off amusing himself at a luxe beachfront villa somewhere at least until his bank account hits the skids & he's obliged to pen a sordid tell-all to ease the cash crunch. Not so lucky: the Spanish investigators *are* interested in the contents of Manuel Batres' hard drive, reposing happily undisturbed to date in an evidence locker. To this news, the Basso faithful have responded with delirious joy, nearly tearful with happiness over the possibility of actual Spaniards being busted for a Spanish doping scandal involving Spanish teams, and the pure cycling nuts thrilled to finally see, as is rumored, a pack of coddled crappy soccer players also take a hit. The big question? Whether Fuentes, who has revealed of late a decidedly disconcerting tendency to show up at various public events proudly extolling all the wonderful work he's done on behalf of his health-conscious stable of cyclists, is going to go so far into wingnut territory that, if his own stupid coded documents don't sink him, and the Spaniards ever bother to ask, he's gonna start naming names, or retreat into ethical doctorly confidentiality and refuse to sell 'em out. Good luck on that one boys!

Can I Get You More Salt for that Wound?: and, adding insult to dope-slap, I see the Giro d'Italia has decided that Team High Road appreciates the beauty of the race enough (and is committed to riding clean enough) after all, letting it back in to the delight of managers and riders alike but still pointedly excluding the rude ungrateful drug fiends over at Astana. Is there anything *else* the Grand Tours can do to humiliate Johan Bruyneel? Not that I'm gonna particularly weep over that, tho' I do wish him well and all--but why take Andreas Kloden and Levi Leipheimer down with him?! Thinking of other morally righteous squads, I see scorched-earth bridge-burner Michael Ball over at Rock Racing has announced his 5-man team roster for this weekend (woo-hoo!)'s Tour of California, leaving in we love Fast Freddy Rodriguez and Victor Hugo Pena--and, in an apparent attempt to get them all ignominiously kicked out of the race, recent John Doe Kayle Leogrande--but inexplicably leaving out marquee alleged ex-dope-hounds Oscar Sevilla, Tyler Hamilton, and Santi Botero, whose big names he's seemingly happy to pimp so long as they don't actually ride. Didn't Tinkoff pull that exact same weaselly publicity stunt last season between cutting its imploding stars loose?

Question o' the Week: so, pondering the return of convicted perps like Hamilton, and merely sanctioned suspects like DiLuca and Petacchi, to this season's peloton, and the ensuing shock and outrage that tends to result, I'm a'wondering: do folks really mean it when they say "he's paid his dues, we should welcome him back" even if, like Tyler, they've adamantly denied their guilt? Or is it only when someone's copped to their evil deeds in a perfectly orchestrated humble dewy-eyed ongoing public wah-wah (you know who you are), or even a terse'n'surly one-time interview (and we all saw how far that got Sinkewitz), that we'll take 'em back with open arms? Everyone about to get their !@# kicked in Op Puerto needs to know!

1 comment: said...

Wouldn't it be funny, ha ha, if by the time they get around to reading stuff off that disk drive in the evidence locker, it wasn't readable any more?