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Landis B Sample Confirms A

The news is out this morning that Floyd Landis’ B sample has confirmed the adverse reaction of the A sample from his Stage 17 victory in the Tour de France. Landis maintains his innocence:

I have never taken any banned substance, including testosterone. I was the strongest man in the Tour de France, and that is why I am the champion,’ said Landis. ‘I will fight these charges with the same determination and intensity that I bring to my training and racing. It is now my goal to clear my name and restore what I worked so hard to achieve.

We want to believe that our heroes are telling the truth. It maintains our belief system in the world. Hearing events such as these shatters our mental model of the world, making us doubt future achievements in the sporting world. I still maintain that something is fishy in this case, and I will continue to let Landis prove that he was the rightful winner of the 2006 Tour de France. Next up in this case is arbitration to the high court of sports, the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Tyler Hamilton tried to get his doping case thrown out and failed. Will Landis succeed any better?

It’s just an unfortunate situation for all parties. Even if Landis proves that he did nothing wrong, his reputation and credibility are shot. The Tour suffers because it’s the first time in the 103-year history of the race that the winner has been thrown out for doping. No one seems to win, not even Oscar Pereiro, the runner-up in this year’s Tour and former teammate of Landis who would be declared the victor if Landis loses his case:

I have too much respect for Landis to do otherwise… In any case, I have a bittersweet feeling because it is bad news for cycling, and I would prefer to remain second and that they don’t confirm the positive.

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3 thoughts on “Landis B Sample Confirms A

  1. Edmund says:

    They found synthetic testosterone in his urine. How can you still believe in his innocence? I feel incredibly crappy for actually having gone to France to see the Tour. It feels like I have been personally cheated on. Next year I don’t think I will watch the tour any longer. It is just no fun any more.

  2. Indeed, the presence of external testosterone is a bad sign for Landis. If he’s truly guilty, he should come forward and admit it to the world.

    There’s a chance, however, that he’s innocent; it’s that slim chance to which I have chosen to cling. Call me an apologist or a conspiracy theorist. I know I’m grasping at straws, but what if the urine samples were tampered with after Stage 17? What if the samples were mislabeled or swapped with someone else’s? Does the analysis of the samples also include DNA matching?

  3. Brook Garrettson says:

    Landis having doped seems all to inconsistent for a rider who has tested negative otherwise. His unique Mennonite family background is a rock of accountability to which he must prove his virtue daily, especially since his chosen career has gone against their wishes. Dopping goes against the legitimacy of character he has worked so hard to establish in the eyes of both his past and his present. Landis is a man who appears to be too dedicated, accountable and unsophisticated to be caught cheating in the sport of cycling.

    I believe there is too much for certain old-country zealots to gain and little for them to loose should Landis be disqualified. That being said, it seems to be quite a simple matter to have Landis’s urine sample be made to show signs of testosterone, synthetic or otherwise, without Landis ever having doped. Such a chemical can be added to a urine sample at any time after they were submitted to the officials. Such a chemical could even have appeared in Landis’s body prior to testing, either through ingestion or quick injection prick, without Landis knowing.

    As cycnical and legalistic as the Tour De Frace Has become, it is important to never neglect consideration for a rider’s character. I therefore stand by Landis’s assertions until proven otherwise. It is a detriment to Landis’s accomplishment and a damper on the sport of cycling that the allegations accusing Landis of doping have transpired.

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