Any words on Tyler's test results?



Rudy

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Sep 23, 2003
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run_and_ride said:
How do you know how long anyone on here spends riding? Even if I ride 8 hours a day and sleep 8 hours a day that still leaves 8 hours for discussions on this forum.

Innocent until proven guilty is a legal concept. It does not apply to message board opinions.

Comparing insulting someone's mother to debating about whether a top Pro Cyclist is doping or not is just ridiculous. Unless the mother in question is a top Pro Cyclist.

I have an idea for you. How about instead of telling people what they should and shouldn't be allowed to discuss on a message board, you just go for a ride. Otherwise you just look like a hypocrite.


Then you either don't work or you need to get a life.
 

JohnO

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Brunswick_kate said:
The decision of **someone** in the IOC to leak the A sample results in full knowledge that the B sample was unavailable is a) cowardly and b) ethically stinks.

Tyler Hamilton may indeed be guilty of blood doping. I think it's irresponsible to not acknowledge that he may also be innocent of these charges.

As a policeman friend of mine would say - this one doesn't quite pass the nose test. It's a bit too convenient.

There are any number of people and organizations who stand to benefit from Tyler's demise. Arguably, the UCI itself might benefit. It's Pro Tour series is being launched to a somewhat tepid response, not to mention the fact that the ruling body will now profit directly from cycling activities. Some people in the UCI might have the idea that this series could draw larger crowds and more profit if another American wasn't winning the races. Okay, that's a bit paranoid, but it does illustrate how people other than competing cyclists might wish to see Tyler fail.

I live near a small city with a college that has a nationally known basketball program. I saw how money corrupted people associated with what was supposed to be a purely amateur sport. It wasn't quite amateur - when that team won, it generated millions for the local economy. Thus, the corrupting influence.

Pro cycling has to be far worse, because a lot more money is involved. Already, that promise of money has led many cyclists to thicken their blood to the point of cardiac arrest. Are we also naive enough to think that the officials and lab technicians are immune to the same corrupting influence? Tyler might be guilty, but there is plenty of motive for this to have been a manufactured event. The fact that he was the only cyclist identified out of hundreds tested doesn't make it smell any better.

We, and in fact the entire cycling world, should keep in mind that a witch hunt will destroy professional cycling as quickly as doping. We, the fans, support pro cycling. If we don't enjoy it, whether it be from doping or from arbitrary treatment of the cyclists, we won't support it.
 

VeloFlash

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Brunswick_kate said:
The decision of **someone** in the IOC to leak the A sample results in full knowledge that the B sample was unavailable is a) cowardly and b) ethically stinks.

Tyler Hamilton may indeed be guilty of blood doping. I think it's irresponsible to not acknowledge that he may also be innocent of these charges.

And in deference to those who hold opinions which do not agree with mine, may I defer some of the bomblast by expressing now that I appreciate you have an absolute right to express your personally held opinions, however you may have derived those opinions, although I may disagree with the contents of your conclusions. Thank you for your considered and measured response.

Lot of conjecture here.

KB, if you have been reading your revelations on doping exposures you will find that failures on testing of "A" samples are nearly always released. When an athlete is notified of a positive drug test result from the "A" sample they have a right have the "B" sample analysed or waived. The athlete has a right to be informed of the procedures of testing and can be present (or have a representative present) during the analysis of the "B" sample.

You allude to a conspiracy about release of "A" sample results knowing the "B" sample was not fit for testing. Where is your source for this information? The lab would not have known the "B" sample was destroyed by refrigeration until after the request by TH to have his "B" sample tested.

KB, you will also find that the identification of the donor of the samples for drug testing are unknown to the lab testers. The samples are coded. There is a restriction under IOC rules to release the name of an athlete who has failed an "A" test. But the IOC has an obligation under the rules to release the identity and results of the analysis to the following -

1. The athlete (who can request his "B" sample be analysed).

2. The head of the team (ie US Olympic team).

3. The international federation governing the sport (ie. UCI)

4. World Anti Doping Agency (WADA).

The IOC did not "leak" the information to the UCI as you speculate. The IOC followed the rules applicable to every athlete. I suggest you read the IOC anti doping rules that applied to the Athens 2004 Olympics.
 

Saucy

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Feb 21, 2004
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VeloFlash said:
Lot of conjecture here.

KB, if you have been reading your revelations on doping exposures you will find that failures on testing of "A" samples are nearly always released. When an athlete is notified of a positive drug test result from the "A" sample they have a right have the "B" sample analysed or waived. The athlete has a right to be informed of the procedures of testing and can be present (or have a representative present) during the analysis of the "B" sample.

You allude to a conspiracy about release of "A" sample results knowing the "B" sample was not fit for testing. Where is your source for this information? The lab would not have known the "B" sample was destroyed by refrigeration until after the request by TH to have his "B" sample tested.

KB, you will also find that the identification of the donor of the samples for drug testing are unknown to the lab testers. The samples are coded. There is a restriction under IOC rules to release the name of an athlete who has failed an "A" test. But the IOC has an obligation under the rules to release the identity and results of the analysis to the following -

1. The athlete (who can request his "B" sample be analysed).

2. The head of the team (ie US Olympic team).

3. The international federation governing the sport (ie. IOC)

4. World Anti Doping Agency (WADA).

The IOC did not "leak" the information as you speculate. The IOC followed the rules applicable to every athlete. I suggest you read the IOC anti doping rules that applied to the Athens 2004 Olympics.

Great post. Firstly you cleared up a lot of questions I had about the testing and information dissemination process. And you further debunk many ridiculous conspiracy theories since the testers can not possibly know the identity of the donor of the sample.

For those of you who were wondering why there are so few replies to this topic, its because there is a fairly robust discussion thread in the Bike Racing/Grand Tours forum. Come join us, everyone! Veloflash, your knowledge would be really welcomed over there. At the very least it would be great if you at least posted this response that thread - it sheds a lot of light on the testing process.
 

VeloFlash

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Saucy said:
Great post. Firstly you cleared up a lot of questions I had about the testing and information dissemination process. And you further debunk many ridiculous conspiracy theories since the testers can not possibly know the identity of the donor of the sample.

For those of you who were wondering why there are so few replies to this topic, its because there is a fairly robust discussion thread in the Bike Racing/Grand Tours forum. Come join us, everyone! Veloflash, your knowledge would be really welcomed over there. At the very least it would be great if you at least posted this response that thread - it sheds a lot of light on the testing process.

Saucy, you have my permission to plagiarise me. But be gentle :)
 

Brunswick_kate

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VeloFlash said:
Lot of conjecture here.

KB, if you have been reading your revelations on doping exposures you will find that failures on testing of "A" samples are nearly always released. When an athlete is notified of a positive drug test result from the "A" sample they have a right have the "B" sample analysed or waived. The athlete has a right to be informed of the procedures of testing and can be present (or have a representative present) during the analysis of the "B" sample.

You allude to a conspiracy about release of "A" sample results knowing the "B" sample was not fit for testing. Where is your source for this information? The lab would not have known the "B" sample was destroyed by refrigeration until after the request by TH to have his "B" sample tested.

KB, you will also find that the identification of the donor of the samples for drug testing are unknown to the lab testers. The samples are coded. There is a restriction under IOC rules to release the name of an athlete who has failed an "A" test. But the IOC has an obligation under the rules to release the identity and results of the analysis to the following -

1. The athlete (who can request his "B" sample be analysed).

2. The head of the team (ie US Olympic team).

3. The international federation governing the sport (ie. UCI)

4. World Anti Doping Agency (WADA).

The IOC did not "leak" the information to the UCI as you speculate. The IOC followed the rules applicable to every athlete. I suggest you read the IOC anti doping rules that applied to the Athens 2004 Olympics.

Is the function of the B test to confirm that the A test was done correctly?


I am looking for the citation where I read a representative from Phonak statign that the reason Phonak came out with the story because they were getting calls from the press concerning it. I took this to indicate that the information had reached the public domain by irregular channels; however, I can't seem to find the original statement and perhaps I misread it.

Thank you for your reply. I appreciate that there are procedures in place to prevent tester bias. I guess I have a natural curiousity about whether those procedures were adhered to. I've seen forensics labs drop the ball on that one in instances that were a hell of a lot more serious than a mere doping violation.
 

VeloFlash

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Brunswick_kate said:
Is the function of the B test to confirm that the A test was done correctly?

It allows the athlete or his/her representative to fully observe and note the procedures to ensure proper practices are followed. Also both "A" and "B" samples are tamper proof sealed, identified with a code and signed at collection from the athlete. The athlete can confirm the "B" sample seal is intact and that it is his/her sample. The athlete should then have no grounds as a defence relating to wrong samples or improper analysing procedures if the "B" test reproduces the results of the "A" test.


I am looking for the citation where I read a representative from Phonak statign that the reason Phonak came out with the story because they were getting calls from the press concerning it. I took this to indicate that the information had reached the public domain by irregular channels; however, I can't seem to find the original statement and perhaps I misread it.

You have three organisations (WADA, UCI and US Olympic team management) plus an individual athlete, who would certainly be confiding in close associates, who would know the results. The premature leak to the media is more likely than not the more persons who are privvy and the higher the profile of the athlete.

A case in point. BALCO, the Californian PED supplier to a number of top athletes, had an informant in WADA who was advising BALCO when WADA had become aware of new drugs and there was a test in place. So not all organisations are leak proof.
 

Brunswick_kate

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VeloFlash said:
It allows the athlete or his/her representative to fully observe and note the procedures to ensure proper practices are followed. Also both "A" and "B" samples are tamper proof sealed, identified with a code and signed at collection from the athlete. The athlete can confirm the "B" sample seal is intact and that it is his/her sample. The athlete should then have no grounds as a defence relating to wrong samples or improper analysing procedures if the "B" test reproduces the results of the "A" test.

.

So, do you consider it reasonable that Hamilton should be viewed by some as having failed the IOC test, given that there is no means of verifying the original result? Obviously it's the rule. I guess my question is whether it is fair and reasonable given the severity of the consequences?
 

VeloFlash

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Brunswick_kate said:
So, do you consider it reasonable that Hamilton should be viewed by some as having failed the IOC test, given that there is no means of verifying the original result? Obviously it's the rule. I guess my question is whether it is fair and reasonable given the severity of the consequences?


"Some" are incorrect in their views. Hamilton still holds the TT Olympic gold medal as the anti doping rules in place for Athens 2004 gave an athlete the right to challenge the "A" sample test with a reproduction of the "B" sample test or concede his breach by waiving that right. Hamilton elected to have the "B" sample tested and the accredited laboratory could not reproduce the "A" sample analysis results. Therefore there was no infraction under the rules.

The overall doubts about Hamilton arise because of the later Vuelta positive "A" & "B" tests for the same infraction occurring very soon after. These reflect badly on Hamilton as it would appear that if the IOC "B" sample had not been destroyed through freezing it would have more than likely produced a positive result consistent with the Vuelta positive results.

If Hamilton had not entered the Vuelta to be tested there would be no linkage to the IOC "A" positive and "B" stuff up to throw doubt on Hamilton's sporting integrity. The IOC issue would have blown over very quickly.
 

run_and_ride

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Rudy said:
Then you either don't work or you need to get a life.

Wow. Your originality is only surpassed by your deductive reasoning and logic. And that is not a good thing.
 

Powerful Pete

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JohnO said:
There are any number of people and organizations who stand to benefit from Tyler's demise. Arguably, the UCI itself might benefit. It's Pro Tour series is being launched to a somewhat tepid response, not to mention the fact that the ruling body will now profit directly from cycling activities. Some people in the UCI might have the idea that this series could draw larger crowds and more profit if another American wasn't winning the races. Okay, that's a bit paranoid, but it does illustrate how people other than competing cyclists might wish to see Tyler fail.


Wow, and I thought we Italians were into conspiracy theories. ;) I would discount this particular theory as Tyler was actually one of the most liked riders in the peloton. He was well liked, stayed out of trouble (ok, until the Olympics), heroically rode with injuries (bringing back a bit of the epic sportsman thing that the sport harks back to) and did not win too much.

IMHO, it sounds like he just screwed up - if I am not mistaken, he was not even supposed to race the Vuelta, so was probably not expecting to be tested in that period...
 

rayner

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In my opinion its pretty damn obvious whats happened. Theres a new test out which wasnt meant to be ready for the vuelta. Hamilton fails the subsequent drug test because he didnt see it coming. If you look around it has been written everywhere that team doctors find ways to get an athlete to test negative. There was finally a test that no one was prepared for. You set the trap, you catch the rat. If he is doping may he never be allowed to ride again.

You can **** it up and make excuses all you like but he did test positive.
 

JohnO

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Powerful Pete said:
Wow, and I thought we Italians were into conspiracy theories. ;) I would discount this particular theory as Tyler was actually one of the most liked riders in the peloton. He was well liked, stayed out of trouble (ok, until the Olympics), heroically rode with injuries (bringing back a bit of the epic sportsman thing that the sport harks back to) and did not win too much.

IMHO, it sounds like he just screwed up - if I am not mistaken, he was not even supposed to race the Vuelta, so was probably not expecting to be tested in that period...

Like I said, that's a bit to the left of paranoid, but I tossed out something outrageous to make a point - a doping scandal can affect more than just a single cyclist. Maybe it's my American background, we tend to question authority unless we have a good reason not to.

Perhaps Tyler wasn't expecting to race in the Vuelta, but for sure he was expecting to race (and be tested) in the Olympics, so I don't think he was caught by surprise. The UCI may be lax on doping, but the IOC is not. The transfusion test was announced at the start of the year, so it was not a surprise test.

The IOC did quietly contact the UCI, I will have to track down the news article that quoted the IOC official - 'we don't discuss the nature of such communications', but he did acknowledge that the communications took place.

I have a hard time thinking that a person who can ride the TDF with a broken collarbone, and even take a stage win, would do something like this. Perhaps he did, and my own naivete is my undoing. It's just a shame to see a cyclist who otherwise exemplified strong character going down like this, with no real scrutiny being applied to the reasons, the circumstances, or the soundness of the test.
 

Rudy

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run_and_ride said:
Wow. Your originality is only surpassed by your deductive reasoning and logic. And that is not a good thing.

yea yea yea ....ya dada ...if you want to come on here to show off what a big d*** or a bif mouth you have then go ahead.

and get a f****** grip. Everyoone of your post here, judging from you reaction, we have quite a fair amount of testosterone.
 

gntlmn

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I don't have numbers to back this up, but I've heard that false positives are not all that unlikely in tests that are supposedly very accurate. So I still would have had some doubt if both Vuelta tests turned up positive, and Tyler had not failed any other tests. All it would take is to somehow mix a drip of someone else's blood off a latex glove into each sample. This possibility is very remote, but could happen. There are other reasons for false positives though.

Anyway, the layperson might question it if it were the only positive result Tyler had ever had. But he did have another positive, and that was at the Olympics. This was a completely different syringe, different testers, different location, different date. The positive result is enough to remove doubt in my mind about the other 2 positives at the Vuelta. I don't need a 2nd positive at the Olympics to confirm doping at the Vuelta. The evidence is there.

Now, this thread would take an entirely different tone if Tyler had tested negative on each of these tests--the Olympics and the Vuelta--and the question were posed, "Is Tyler doping?" Then we would be talking about how his horsepower was suspiciously higher than normal on those 2 TT days at the Olympics and then again at the Vuelta. I would probably be inclined to say he wasn't because the tests came out negative. But there would be a lot of argument if the horsepower results were made clear.

This is not a problem of no evidence. Clearly the evidence is there. The fact that he is a nice guy and doesn't seem like he would do such a thing is probably what is giving a few people pause here. By the same reasoning that I reject claims that someone is doping when the tests don't indicate doping, I reject claims that someone is not doping when the tests show that he is. To refuse to believe is more of an emotional argument than a factual one.
 

VeloFlash

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JohnO said:
The IOC did quietly contact the UCI, I will have to track down the news article that quoted the IOC official - 'we don't discuss the nature of such communications', but he did acknowledge that the communications took place.

The IOC was obliged under anti-doping rules to contact the UCI, quietly or loudly but in confidence.

Article 7 Sub Clause 2.5 of Anti-doping Rules applicable to 2004 Athens Olympic Games

7.2.5 Notifying Athlete or other persons concerned of the anti-doping rule violation:

The IOC President or a person designated by him shall, in confidence, promptly notify the Athlete or other person concerned, the Athlete’s or other person’s chef de mission, the International Federation concerned [my emphasis] and the World Anti-Doping Agency of:

a) any adverse analytical finding;

b) the anti-doping rule violation or of the additional investigation that will be conducted as to whether there is an anti-doping rule violation;

c) the Athlete’s right to promptly request the analysis of the B sample or, failing such request, that the B sample analysis may be deemed waived;

d) the right of the Athlete and/or the Athlete’s representative to attend the B sample opening and analysis if such analysis is requested; and

e) the Athlete’s right to request copies of the A and B sample laboratory package, which includes information as requested by the International Standards for Laboratories;
 

VeloFlash

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gntlmn said:
I don't have numbers to back this up, but I've heard that false positives are not all that unlikely in tests that are supposedly very accurate. So I still would have had some doubt if both Vuelta tests turned up positive, and Tyler had not failed any other tests. All it would take is to somehow mix a drip of someone else's blood off a latex glove into each sample. This possibility is very remote, but could happen. There are other reasons for false positives though.

Below is a quote from a testing summary of EPO tests for the Sydney Olympics. You may recall that the IOC refused to use the tests singularly as evidence for a breach of anti-doping rules for EPO use. If the athlete failed the French urine test (which only detected EPO use in prior 3-4 days) then the athlete's results from the Australian EPO blood test were included.

The rationale behind the IOC's decision was the on-model (detecting current EPO use) produced two false positives from 3,500 subjects (.057%) and this false positive result could be used as a defence. The off-model for use of EPO up to 4 weeks after cessation produced no false positives. You may note that while the French urine test produced no positive results the Australian EPO tests produced eight during the Olympics but the results could not be used as those athletes had passed the French urine tests.

The point of this exercise is the IOC is sensitive to testing which produces false positives and are unlikely to approve and institute a testing procedure with any historic ammunition to be used by an athlete's defence lawyer.

"Analysis of the on-model, which tested for current use of EPO, found that out of about 3500 subjects, only two false-positive results were returned. So, while this model was highly sensitive, it could not be used by itself for the detection of r-HuEPO abuse.

"Analysis of the off-model, which tested for use of EPO up to four weeks after drug cessation, showed the test to be highly specific, with no false-positive results from the testing of about 3500 subjects.

"Overall, this validation study showed that an Œindirect‚ approach was a viable approach for the detection of EPO use.

"In July 2000, these results were taken to the IOC, which had called a special meeting of the doping commission. The researchers involved and the findings were subjected to quite intense questioning over the course of the two-day meeting, with the outcome being that the on-model protocol, in combination with the direct urine test for EPO, were accepted as a sanctionable test.

"The EPO test was implemented in the Sydney Olympic Games, with approximately 300 blood samples taken in the two weeks prior to the opening ceremony. It is believed that this implementation had a deterrent effect. The testing resulted in one high on-model score among the tested athletes, but the urine test was not positive in this case, so it was not sanctioned. Of the 300 tests performed, there were also seven high off-model results".
 

gntlmn

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As I said, false positives can and do occur, but to get them on two separate occasions in different testing labs is highly unlikely. The burden of proof is on Hamilton. I don't think he's going to successfully keep his pro job.
 

VeloFlash

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gntlmn said:
As I said, false positives can and do occur, but to get them on two separate occasions in different testing labs is highly unlikely. The burden of proof is on Hamilton. I don't think he's going to successfully keep his pro job.

A false positive can only occur during a controlled test when the testers become aware from the results of a blind test that one or more of the subjects who tested positive were in the placebo group.

As I have pointed out, the existence of any false positives in testing would render those tests as unsustainable by the IOC and potentially litigious.

For a false positive to occur during competition testing it means the subject is irrefutably clean but tested positive. If you were only to believe one side of the story, the athlete and connections, that would mean 95% of all competition tested subjects were the results of a false positive.

That appears the less than objective opinion about TH.
 

gntlmn

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VeloFlash said:
As I have pointed out, the existence of any false positives in testing would render those tests as unsustainable by the IOC and potentially litigious.

That clearly is not true because they always take a sample B. If the tests were infallible, as you claim, then the sample B would be unnecessary, and Tyler would have still lost his gold at the olympics even when the sample B came up inconclusive due to mishandling. The fact that false positives can and do occur is the reason why they bother taking a sample B and the reason they didn't dare take his medal even though I doubt many believe he was not doping at the olympics, considering both samples at the Vuelta were positive.

By the way, I know someone who got a false positive on a test for HIV. The doctor blew it when he didn't retest. He should have. The test was false as later determined in other testing.
 

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