/ Wiggins Retires....

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Indy - on 28 Dec 2016
Sort of on the cards but wonder how much his current situation has affected his decision.
1
ripper - on 28 Dec 2016
In reply to Indy:

a bit more than 'sort of on the cards', surely?
Run_Ross_Run - on 28 Dec 2016
In reply to Indy:

Thought it was 'announced' earlier in the year that he was retiring. May be wrong though.

Henry Iddon - on 28 Dec 2016
In reply to Indy:

2016 was always going to be his last season - Rio the retire.
The New NickB - on 28 Dec 2016
In reply to Indy:

The plan was always to retire after Ghent, I think there was a little doubt, because he was enjoying the sort of riding he has been doing since Rio.
Yanis Nayu - on 28 Dec 2016
In reply to Indy:

He's going to run a solar energy farm with the sun shining from his arse.
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rocksol - on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to Indy:

Nobody has suggested he has broken the rules The Times is on a mission with all sorts of accusations right across the cycling spectrum Sport England seems to think cycling needs a good dose of PC where coaches aren't allowed to shout at athletes. How else can you sometimes motivate them This is not Lance Good luck to him
1
JEF on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to Indy:

I went off Wiggo when he pulled stupid faces during the National Anthem at the Olympics, for most athletes representing your country is something they aspire to. I think Wiggo demeaned their efforts, perhaps because he wasn't being paid for it(?)
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digby - on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to JEF:

Me too. Don't think it had anything to do with money though.
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Yanis Nayu - on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to JEF:

I thought it was funny tbh. I've read a shed-load of cycling autobiographies this year and a common thread is that if it's not all about him he can't be arsed. Cavendish said he tanked it in an Olympics final which cost Cav a medal, David Millar said he didn't try in the team time trial for Garmin after he'd signed for Sky, even though it was a big target for the team, and Froome said he didn't take turns in a race in 2013 and then reneged on a promise to work for him in the 2013 Tour. Even the people least critical, like Geraint Thomas, don't paint him in an entirely glowing light.
yesbutnobutyesbut - on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to JEF:

> I went off Wiggo when he pulled stupid faces during the National Anthem at the Olympics, for most athletes representing your country is something they aspire to. I think Wiggo demeaned their efforts, perhaps because he wasn't being paid for it(?)

So you think he didn't aspire to represent his country. I doubt anyone here can understand as well as Wiggins the efforts Olympic athletes have to put in to be chosen to represent thier country. He won a lot of medals considering he wasn't being paid for it! Do you really think any Olympic athlete is motivated purely by money ?
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JEF on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to yesbutnobutyesbut:

I don't know what his motivation was, hence the brackets (?)
I do think it showed a lack of respect and I think less of him as a result.
4
Chris the Tall - on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to Yanis Nayu:

Hmmm, both Cav and Wiggo are well-known as quite complex characters

Beijing 2008 - Cav was on top form, left the Tour early but was the only Brit cyclist to leave empty handed. The schedule meant Wiggo had 2 golds in the bag before they got round to the Madison, by which time he was either knackered/ill/celebrating, depending on the story (and possibly all three). So they had a big fall out. He should have been replaced by Thomas, but the team management bottled it.

But not only did he support Cav in the 2011 worlds, he also did the unthinkable and put in a big effort to lead out Cav on the Champs, and in the penultimate road stage. Both times against the wishes of the DS as it put his TT, and indeed overall victory at risk.

Yep he upset a lot of people at Garmin, but on the other hand he is now doing what he can to nurture the talent of his current team mates, such as Doull.

As to pulling a face at the Olympics - oh big deal ! But it's down to the fact that he is uneasy being the star, the centre of attention, so he feels he has to be the clown - same with his 'raffle' comments after the Tour.

Stories abound as to what an arse Cav can be, especially when he loses. But again it's part of his character.
Lion Bakes on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to Indy:

Who is Wiggins?

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yesbutnobutyesbut - on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to JEF:

I'd love to represent my country and would be incredibly proud to do so, not that it's ever going to happen.
I also have no time or respect for the National Anthem as I don't believe in God or the Monarchy.
His achievements on the bike are what mattered and what he'll be remembered for not the fact that he smiled through a song. Dwelling on two minutes of his career that might be slightly controversial is the type of thing that the gutter press does.
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JEF on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to yesbutnobutyesbut:

Ok
Wanderer100 - on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to Indy:

Yes yes yes......but what was in that package?
Unfortunately for Sir Bradley that's what a lot of people will remember him for.


Chris Harris - on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to Wanderer100:

> Yes yes yes......but what was in that package?

> Unfortunately for Sir Bradley that's what a lot of people will remember him for.

PEDals?
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sebastian dangerfield on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to rocksol:
> Nobody has suggested he has broken the rules

If he had a TUE with the aim of enhancing performance rather than= whatever he said it was for, then that's against the rules.... a lot of people have suggested that's probably the case.
Post edited at 23:36
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Stuart en Écosse - on 29 Dec 2016
In reply to yesbutnobutyesbut:

> His achievements on the bike are what mattered and what he'll be remembered for not the fact that he smiled through a song. Dwelling on two minutes of his career that might be slightly controversial is the type of thing that the gutter press does.

Yep, though I'll happily dwell on a few seconds of his career as The finest moment in sport ever imho: him in yellow leading out Cav on the Champs Elysees in 2012. There was no need for that, which is why it was magical. Wiggo isn't perfect, neither are any of the others. The man's achievements in cycling and what he has done for cycling in the UK both from a sporting and PR perspective are massive.

Chris the Tall - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to sebastian dangerfield:
Are you suggesting fraud or bribery to gain the TUE ?
Post edited at 00:18
Minneconjou Sioux - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Yanis Nayu:
Did he do something to you in some past life we aren't aware of - your anti Wiggo views seem to suggest he somehow offended you beyond what most would regard as a "normal" level of dislike.
Post edited at 04:04
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TheDrunkenBakers - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to JEF:

> I don't know what his motivation was, hence the brackets (?)

> I do think it showed a lack of respect and I think less of him as a result.

I agree. Made me cringe when he did it. Was completely unnecessary and made him look foolish.
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Yanis Nayu - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Minneconjou Sioux:

Really!? Not at all - it's a combination of the TUE issue, which stinks, what I've read about him by people that know him, which doesn't cast him in a good light, and my amazement at the lack of objective scrutiny his actions receive from the likes of you and CtT. I thought he was great until I read what I read about him in autobiographies and looked into the TUE issue with an open mind.
2
Chris the Tall - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Yanis Nayu:

> the lack of objective scrutiny his actions receive from the likes of you and CtT.

So because I've heard the same stories as you have, but also heard other accounts which put them into a differant context, and share those accounts on the forums, it makes you hate BW even more ? And I'm the one with a lack of objective scrutiny ?

I may have mentioned this before, but I can highly reccomend the Cycling Podcast with Richard Moore, Daniel Friebe and Lionel Bernie. Far more objective scrutiny than rider's auto-biogs
Yanis Nayu - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Chris the Tall:

I don't hate him - I have just reached the (reluctant) conclusion that he's a bit of a wanker, and I have a less charitable view on his TUE use than you do, for reasons that have been fully rehearsed on here.

I'm not sure how cycling writers have a better insight into someone's character than his own teammates.

FWIW, I'm not knocking his many and varied achievements, his contribution to British cycling or the colour that he's brought to the sport. I just don't think he won the TdF in an ethically clean way. I doubt whether he could give a shit what I think though, and it seems like with the public he doesn't need plausible deniability, just deniability.
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Stuart (aka brt) - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Chris the Tall:

> So because I've heard the same stories as you have, but also heard other accounts which put them into a differant context, and share those accounts on the forums, it makes you hate BW even more ? And I'm the one with a lack of objective scrutiny ?

> I may have mentioned this before, but I can highly reccomend the Cycling Podcast with Richard Moore, Daniel Friebe and Lionel Bernie. Far more objective scrutiny than rider's auto-biogs

It is good, but they're not what you'd call supportive re: Brad and the TUE/mystery package.
Chris the Tall - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Yanis Nayu:

> I'm not sure how cycling writers have a better insight into someone's character than his own teammates.

Objectivity !

The chances are that anyone who reaches the top of their sport has an ego the size of Texas (apart from the Texan, whose ego was the size of a small planet). The auto biography will inevitably flatter them, and allow them to settle a few scores, or a fuller explanation of their misdeeds. Regard them as testimony, not fact. And no, I've not read any of Wiggo's, or Cav's
Yanis Nayu - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Stuart (aka brt):

I went to see Ned Boulting's Bikeology tour, and someone asked him about Wiggins and the TUEs, mystery package and he basically summed it up exactly the way I have, which surprised me because I would have expected him to be a bit more guarded.

I follow a lot of cyclists on Twitter and can't recall seeing a single post from any of them about his retirement.
Yanis Nayu - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Chris the Tall:

> Objectivity !

> The chances are that anyone who reaches the top of their sport has an ego the size of Texas (apart from the Texan, whose ego was the size of a small planet). The auto biography will inevitably flatter them, and allow them to settle a few scores, or a fuller explanation of their misdeeds. Regard them as testimony, not fact. And no, I've not read any of Wiggo's, or Cav's

I've read three books by three different team mates who all said he threw the towel in when it wasn't about him. I don't need fingerprints or DNA samples - I'm forming an opinion of him not convicting him of a crime.
Mike Highbury - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Chris the Tall:
> Objectivity !

Nicole Cooke, entertaining as ever: 'The apparent lack of knowledge of so many in the support staff did not chime with my own experiences; medical privacy was an early loss in maintaining best health as we all discussed the optimal way forward from any injury.

'I can usefully add other dimensions. Three of the four witnesses before the committee have just spent six months locked into an investigation asking: “Does sexism exist in British Cycling?”

'Why did the top management deem it acceptable to use the publicly funded national women’s team road manager, Cope, in the role of a basic courier?'
FactorXXX - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers:

I agree. Made me cringe when he did it. Was completely unnecessary and made him look foolish.

Especially from someone that had a OBE, a CBE and a Knighthood.
sebastian dangerfield on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Chris the Tall:

> Are you suggesting fraud or bribery to gain the TUE?

I'm challenging the view that "nobody's suggesting he broke the rules"

I don't know if he did, my guess is probably. I also don't know if lieing to get a TUE is fraud or not. It would be breaking the rules though.
TheDrunkenBakers - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to FactorXXX:

> I agree. Made me cringe when he did it. Was completely unnecessary and made him look foolish.

> Especially from someone that had a OBE, a CBE and a Knighthood.

And this is a huge point. He has nothing to prove to anyone as his achievements are well understood. We also know that he's a 'character' too but there is a time and a place to be a clown and standing in front of the nation and potentially billions of others is neither.

Someone else commented on queen and god in the national anthem too which is poppycock. The words are less important than the symbolism.

Youngsters look up to him and so he should have stood there with dignity and professionalism, and with respect. Pulling stupid faces was none of these and set a bad example of how to behave in those circumstances.
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Minneconjou Sioux - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Yanis Nayu:

I've yet to see any high performing sports star, one who is at the top of his or her game, that doesn't have some sort of character flaw. TBH I fully accept that it is unlikely that they will be particularly nice people and I wonder if your dissapointment in Wiggins isn't really about your realisation that you were being nieve.

Funnily enough, it is the traits you so despise in him that I quite like. There is a very clear part of his personality that says "I'm Bradley Wiggins - take it or leave it" and I'd much rather that than the smarmy, polished personalities which are creating a false front. You seem to want to give him a hard time for being selfish - well no shit Sherlock - I'm not sure I know of too many top end sports personalities that aren't selfish.

As for the TUE issue, I know that WIggins made a comment a long time ago (though I admit I can't quote it) that went something along the lines of "we are all on something, just nothing illegal" and right then and there I knew that he and others around him would be pushing some boundaries. But I was never nieve enough to think they wouldn't be which is why it's not a lack of objective scrutiny on my part as the revelation about the TUE's is nothing I didn't already think was happening.

Putting all this to one side though. I dislike Froome. I think time will show him to be as complicit in pushing rule boundaries as Wiggins or any of the other top athletes out there. But I don't make it my mission to character assasinate him at every opportunity, which you seem to do with Wiggins, hence my comment.
Yanis Nayu - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Minneconjou Sioux:

Chris Hoy's a pretty decent guy isn't he?

Perhaps I am naive, but I'd rather take the view that sportspeople are behaving ethically until information comes to light that they're not rather than take the cynical view that they're all cheats.

I suspect most people would interpret Wiggins' comments as referring to supplement, not fiddling TUEs to get PEDs.

I think Chris Froome is a really decent bloke, but if the same information came to light about him as has come to light about Wiggins I'd think he was a cheat too (albeit a nicer one)
Chris the Tall - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Mike Highbury:


> 'Why did the top management deem it acceptable to use the publicly funded national women’s team road manager, Cope, in the role of a basic courier?'

Absolutely spot on, and that was the issue that the select committee should have been focusing on, and the issue of the contents of the package to UKADA.

Cooke has every reason to be angry at the disparity of funding when she was at her best. We need to know whether things have changed. Pretty sure BMX and MTB still don't anything like the level of support that the track/road team get
Minneconjou Sioux - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Yanis Nayu:

> Chris Hoy's a pretty decent guy isn't he?

He likely is, which is a bonus, and if that is the criteria by which you judge all top sports stars then so be it. But I don't think that Wiggins has held himself up to be anything other than who he is. And I prefer that kind of honesty.

> Perhaps I am naive, but I'd rather take the view that sportspeople are behaving ethically until information comes to light that they're not rather than take the cynical view that they're all cheats.

But your problem is that the term "ethically" is a perception, a bit like the term "fair" and everyone's perception is different. So Wiggins might feel that he was acting ethically even if you don't agree.

> I suspect most people would interpret Wiggins' comments as referring to supplement, not fiddling TUEs to get PEDs.

Not in the conversations I've had. In fact most who I talked to thought quite the opposite.

> I think Chris Froome is a really decent bloke, but if the same information came to light about him as has come to light about Wiggins I'd think he was a cheat too (albeit a nicer one)

This seems to come down to the fact that you want your sports stars to be nice. Personally I'd rather they stood out as who they were and didn't try to present a "market facing persona"
Yanis Nayu - on 30 Dec 2016
In reply to Minneconjou Sioux:

> He likely is, which is a bonus, and if that is the criteria by which you judge all top sports stars then so be it. But I don't think that Wiggins has held himself up to be anything other than who he is. And I prefer that kind of honesty.

So do I. In fact I can't stand falseness. But I don't think Hoy, for example, presents a false front.

> But your problem is that the term "ethically" is a perception, a bit like the term "fair" and everyone's perception is different. So Wiggins might feel that he was acting ethically even if you don't agree.

You're quite right - my ethics and Wiggins' may well be different, but naturally I use mine when forming an opinion.

> Not in the conversations I've had. In fact most who I talked to thought quite the opposite.

Fair enough.

> This seems to come down to the fact that you want your sports stars to be nice. Personally I'd rather they stood out as who they were and didn't try to present a "market facing persona"

Same here.
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Minneconjou Sioux - on 31 Dec 2016
In reply to Yanis Nayu:

So we are in agreement then? Wow. That must be a first on UKC. Do we win some sort of prize
Yanis Nayu - on 31 Dec 2016
In reply to Minneconjou Sioux:

> So we are in agreement then? Wow. That must be a first on UKC. Do we win some sort of prize

I've got a copy of Bradley Wiggins' autobiography going spare...
Henry Iddon - on 04 Jan 2017
In reply to Indy:

Wonder how he'll go on 'The Jump' - straight in to reality TV !!!
malk - on 10 Jan 2017
TheDrunkenBakers - on 10 Jan 2017
In reply to malk:


Nah. The dude's a disrespectful doping bellend. I like Andy Murray more than him and that's saying something.

Best forgotten.

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stubbed on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Yanis Nayu:

I am a big fan of Ned Boulting (I wish I had seen the tour)... but what was his view on Wiggins / package / TUEs?

My uninformed opinion was that they were pushing a boundary that with hindsight, they now realise that they shouldn't have done.
Lord of Starkness - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers:

I don't know Wiggins, but there are plenty in my local club who've known him and his family for many years and who would be highly surprised if he'd personally been party to knowingly doing anything wrong. Any medication he's been advised to take woulld have been accepted in good faith AND had been administered in accordance with WADA rules and TUE exemptions. Whether he and Team Sky ( and any other high profile athletes) have been operating in a 'grey area' on the limit of the rules is a moot point. They would not be the only ones.

Given the propensity for the UK media to 'knock' our sporting heroes in pursuit of column inches, its hardly surprising that a lot of ill considered comment and mud slinging is taking place. Remember it was not so long ago that there was a lot of furore surrounding Sir Mo Farah's coaching team and training regime in the USA.

One thing that cannot be taken away is Wiggins' fantastic palmares over the length of his carreer encompassing Individual and Team titles at both World championships and Olympics on the track, World and Olympic TT titles on the road, British RR and TT titles, Multiple Stage Race victories - even if you discount the events immediately following the 'mystery package' and TUEs, plus the Hour Record on the track. Few cyclists in the modern era can get anywhere near matching Wiggins versatility.

What is more, even when he was actively racing, Wiggins has been and still is a strong supporter of local events within the UK - often making time to put in low key appearances at 'youth' races to help encourage youngsters to take up the sport he so passionately loves.
Yanis Nayu - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to stubbed:

His view was that it was dodgy - the main bit I remember verbatim is about the use of that particular medication being like a 'sledgehammer to crack a nut'. I expected him to be much more circumspect.
Yanis Nayu - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Lord of Starkness:

He's certainly got an incredible range of achievement, and for me at least, the question mark I have over his TdF victory doesn't hang over his other achievements.
GrahamD - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Lord of Starkness:

What does your friend of a mate down the pub reckon to the inconsistency between Wiggins comments in his autobiography and the reality as it is now transpiring ? even if you can palm everything else about 'requirement' for the TUEs he was on onto his team and British cycling (including the still unresolved mystery around the 'package').

Even if he hasn't technically 'cheated' I do believe his star has lost some of its shine through the whole episode in which he was to some degree complicit.
Rob Parsons on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Lord of Starkness:

> One thing that cannot be taken away is Wiggins' fantastic palmares over the length of his career ... etc ...

That's the 'Shane Sutton' response to these questions. But it's an irrelevance, and it misses the point. Nobody is questioning the recent successes of either Wiggins, or British cycling in general. But the manner with which they were achieved does matter - and that's the what the questions are all about.

The evasion/misinformation about the 'mystery package' is - at the least - baffling.
Post edited at 12:34
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Chris the Tall - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to GrahamD:

I'd say that you have an unrealistic expectation of the accuracy and honesty of a sporting autobiography. It doesn't surprise me in the least that Wiggins was being economical with the truth, no more than it would he if was a climber, a footballer, a politician or a musician.

And the whole furore over the TUEs has been fuelled by unrealistic expectations - it harks back to days when riders complained that they couldn't be expected to ride on mineral water alone. Sport, like politics, can be compared to a sausage factory - if you're a bit squimish it's best not to look too closely at what goes on inside the factory, as you might not be able to stomach the outcome.

So Wiggins was reticent to tell us what drugs he was taking. He probably wouldn't want his internet search history being made public either. The question is whether those drugs constituted cheating, and as far as the TUE is concerned the answer is No. (unless you can prove that the doctor is a fraud or the TUE was granted thanks to bribery).

Whether the contents of the jiffy bag constituted cheating is another matter, and like many I find the story a bit dubious.
Minneconjou Sioux - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to GrahamD:

With reference to his autobiography, what most people don't realise is the power of lawyers in all of this. He may well have made a reference to it (Idon't know that he did) but the legal team reviewing the draft (which there almost certainly would have been) may have made him change or take it out. And you can see why given the furore now that it has come to light. He may also have been "strongly advised" against mentioning the TUE in any interview.
Chris the Tall - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Minneconjou Sioux:

Nothing to do with lawyers. His ghost writer - William Fotheringham - has been quite critical of what Wiggins didn't tell him.
Yanis Nayu - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Minneconjou Sioux:

In that case it would make sense that he simply didn't mention it, rather than very explicitly describe how great his health was that year. I'm pretty sure William Forheringham ghost wrote the book and he's not exactly falling over himself to support Wiggins.
Yanis Nayu - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Chris the Tall:

Ah, there was an hour gap between me starting and finishing my reply.
Minneconjou Sioux - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Yanis Nayu:

Fairy Nuff. But is it possible he was coached by his lawyers before he was even allowed to speak to his ghost writer?

I say this with some experience. I work with accountants and consultants and some of the legal hoops we have to jump through are astounding.
nathan79 - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Indy:

Seems to me this issue doesn't really change most peoples opinion on him. The haters still hate (and most would even if he was without a doubt 100% clean and innocent), the admirers still appreciate him and his achievements.
Chris the Tall - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Henry Iddon:

> Wonder how he'll go on 'The Jump' - straight in to reality TV !!!

Quite looking forward to this ! Can't understand why people are sneering at him doing it - from what I've seen of the program it's pretty challenging so I can understand it's appeal to him.

Does it count as reality TV ? It's far closer to "Superstars" than Big Brother or Made in Chelsea
Lord of Starkness - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to GrahamD:

> What does your friend of a mate down the pub

No friend of a mate down the pub involved

I'm a relatively new member of our cycling club, and have not had any personal contact with Sir Brad and his immediate family, however several of our long standing club members (who are well respected within the sport in the North West) know him and his family personally. At least one club member has family connections.

Whilst my comments are based on hearsay, they reflect views of people who are closer to the truth of the matter than many of those who are quick to judge without full posession of the facts.
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GrahamD - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Lord of Starkness:

> Whilst my comments are based on hearsay, they reflect views of people who are closer to the truth of the matter than many of those who are quick to judge without full posession of the facts.

Or, from a dispassionate point of view, with personal loyalties.

GrahamD - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Chris the Tall:

Its hard to imagine how taking treatment for asthma is likely to be a major revelation in an autobiography. As it is he specifically said he was in good health which he didn't actually have to include at all. Unfortunately the recent interviews (his amongst others) haven't brought us any closer to the truth
Yanis Nayu - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to GrahamD:

It was actually medication for hay fever, somewhat less serious than asthma (although maybe hay fever can exacerbate asthma)
Minneconjou Sioux - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to Yanis Nayu:

But it was a TUE......AND we know it was one that stretched the interpretation of the rules......so that's his motive for not mentioning it.
TheDrunkenBakers - on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to nathan79:

> Seems to me this issue doesn't really change most peoples opinion on him. The haters still hate (and most would even if he was without a doubt 100% clean and innocent), the admirers still appreciate him and his achievements.

You make an interesting point, and how fickle we all are. I, for one, was a huge admirer both of his skills and his personality but after his stupid and embarrassing face pulling at the Olympics I have gone the other way. I just see him as an arrogant and disrespectful clown who should have known better.

sebastian dangerfield on 11 Jan 2017
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers:

The face pulling is a weird thing to be upset about.
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TheDrunkenBakers - on 12 Jan 2017
In reply to sebastian dangerfield:

> The face pulling is a weird thing to be upset about.

To you, perhaps. Am I not entitled to my own opinion?

Minneconjou Sioux - on 12 Jan 2017
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers:

> To you, perhaps. Am I not entitled to my own opinion?

Isn't it interesting, though, how, when faced with the same info, we all react differently. I can forgive Wiggo cos nothing that has been revealed is anything that I didn't already suspect and, I guess, I'm a pragmatist. But, in the end its because I like the guy (or I like what I see of him).

Yanis doesn't like him (or perhaps has more affinity with Froome) so takes the same information and shouts "cheat".

You liked him up until he made faces which seems to be the tipping point. And that is perfectly valid because he offended you or a value of yours.

So we base our judgement of people's actions on whether we like them or not and that can be fickle.

sebastian dangerfield on 12 Jan 2017
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers:

> To you, perhaps. Am I not entitled to my own opinion?

Well of course you are, but it's also a bit odd to read my post and think, "that guy's saying I'm not entitled to my own opinion"
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sebastian dangerfield on 12 Jan 2017
In reply to Minneconjou Sioux:


> Isn't it interesting, though, how, when faced with the same info, we all react differently. I can forgive Wiggo cos nothing that has been revealed is anything that I didn't already suspect and, I guess, I'm a pragmatist. But, in the end its because I like the guy (or I like what I see of him). So we base our judgement of people's actions on whether we like them or not and that can be fickle.

This is spot on, I'm fairly certain he cheated but I still quite like him. Whereas even though Froome's come out of it all looking pretty likely clean, I can't really warm to him. Not really sure why - just how you feel.
GrahamD - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to sebastian dangerfield:

It is all just personal perception. I'm pretty sure that technically Wiggins hasn't cheated but he's gone a long way down in my estimation.
sebastian dangerfield on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to GrahamD:

The thing to remember is that *if* the main reason he got the TUE he did was for its performance enhancing purposes then that's against the rules.

You need to say why you want it when you apply for a TUE. If performance was the primary reason and he didn't say it, he lied by omission on his form and got the TUE on false pretences. *If* that's the case he's a cheat - technically and morally.

GrahamD - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to sebastian dangerfield:

This is why its such a moral grey area. Personally I'd have enough faith in Sky that they won't have broken the letter of any rules (not technically cheating) but they and Wiggins have at least some case to answer for an whether they have pushed to the limit of what is technically allowed to gain best advantage (morally cheating).

So for me I still don't think anyone has technically cheated and for many that is OK. For me, though, I was hoping for a bit more morally from the new guard, given their stance on the subject. For me, Wiggins has fallen from the very high pedestal I, and probably many others who cast their SPOTY votes, put him on.
sebastian dangerfield on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to GrahamD:

I don't think it's not a grey area at all. *If* he chose that TUE for it's performance enhancing qualities that's against the rules and he cheated technically and morally. It wouldn't be pushing boundaries or a grey area, it would be cheating the letter and spirit of the law.




Chris the Tall - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to sebastian dangerfield:

TUEs were, by all accounts, subject to much less scrutiny in 2012 than in 2016. However there is no reason to suppose that the rules were applied any differently to Wiggins than to any other rider. The only difference is that the russians have targeted Wiggins, so we do know how many other riders were also given TUEs. We don't know how many were rejected.

In order to get a TUE a doctor must verify that there is a medical need for it. Obviously other doctors may disagree with the prognosis, as will all manner of internet experts. Unfortunately none of these examined Wiggins in 2012, nor had access to his medical records. And of course, just because one doctor suggests a different course of treatment, it doesn't mean that the first is a fraud.

Of course it's quite possible that Freeman said to Wiggins "we can easily get you a TUE for this, just say this", but there's no evidence of that.

One final point - stop focusing on the performance enhancing issue. This is a secondary concern when it comes to banning a substance - the primary reason is the health dangers. And the authorities deem Kenacort so dangerous that they allow you unlimited use out of competition. In competition it's use is limited to a threshold. Apparently when taken intra-muscular it works slowly so you are unlikely to breach that threshold, so you may not even have needed a TUE at all.

Drugs will always be used and abused in sport, but the decisions as to what you can and can not use must be left up to the independent authorities, not the team, riders and doctors. If WADA/UCI say something is acceptable, who are we to tell a rider they can't take a prescribed medicine?

sebastian dangerfield on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to Chris the Tall:

Dress it up however you want... if the real reason he got it was for performance reasons then that's against the rules - technically and morally. No grey areas, it's just against the letter and the spirit of the law.

As you say we can't know for sure what the real reason was. My judgement is that was very probably the case.

We're discussing whether he cheated - not health affects of PEDs.
Toby_W on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to Indy:

I just read a comment where the rules for TUEs were quoted and the chap thought the Wiggins, Sky, or the UCI were breaking or not following the rules.

The rules state you cannot apply for a TUE and take medicine in anticipation of an illness or for one you don't have at the time. So really the TUE should not have been granted.

What do you all think?

Cheers

Toby
Chris the Tall - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to sebastian dangerfield:

You are entitled to your opinion. It may be correct.

But just be aware that it is based on assumptions, not evidence
sebastian dangerfield on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to Chris the Tall:
> You are entitled to your opinion. It may be correct.

> But just be aware that it is based on assumptions, not evidence

On the contrary...

The first part - that *if* the real reason for the TUE was performance enhancement then he broke the rules - is a fact. It's against the rules to get a TUE for PE. The evidence for this is the TUE rules. There are no assumptions involved.

The second part - that *if* the real reason was performance enhancement he broke the spirit of the rules - is opinion. But it's an opinion I expect the vast majority would agree with and there are no assumptions involved.

The third part - that I think he *probably* did get it for performance enhancement reasons - is my judgement based on what I know about the case - ie it's a judgement based on the evidence available to me. So it's an opinion too. But it's based on evidence and there are no assumptions involved.
Post edited at 12:18
Chris the Tall - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to sebastian dangerfield:

Can I suggest you approach it from a different angle

How would the evidence look if the application for a TUE was correct and for the purpose for which the TUE system was created ? Would it look any different ?

If the answer is no then there is no case to answer. Just because it could have been done for a performance enhancement reason doesn't mean it was the reason. Just because the system was easy to manipulate doesn't mean it was manipulated
Seocan - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to Wanderer100:

and his TUE's
Mike Highbury - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to Chris the Tall:
> How would the evidence look if the application for a TUE was correct and for the purpose for which the TUE system was created ? Would it look any different ?

>The process at the UCI would be similarly flawed and involve the soon to be banned, I grant you that.

But the doctor at his former team might have had an inkling about this debilitating condition, one imagines. The timing of the treatment might be closer to the diagnosis, perhaps. The patient might have been more forthcoming to his ghost writer about the lifetime illness and how it had been managed previously, perhaps that as well.
sebastian dangerfield on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to Chris the Tall:

> How would the evidence look if the application for a TUE was correct and for the purpose for which the TUE system was created ? Would it look any different ? If the answer is no there's no case to answer,

There might not be no case to answer but still.... if the real reason was PE it's against the rules. If I rob a bank and the police have no evidence against me, there's no case for me to answer but I still did it.

Think about it this way. Two applications. A. done in good faith for medical reasons only and B. done for performance enhancing reasons. On the TUE form you need to say why you want the drug. If the form is filled out honestly A. gets the TUE and B. doesn't.

>Just because it could have been done for a performance enhancement reason doesn't mean it was the reason. Just because the system was easy to manipulate doesn't mean it was manipulated

I agree. I think he *probably* got it for PE reasons.
Chris the Tall - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to Mike Highbury:

> >The process at the UCI would be similarly flawed and involve the soon to be banned, I grant you that.

You might want to edit that so it makes sense

> But the doctor at his former team might have had an inkling about this debilitating condition, one imagines. The timing of the treatment might be closer to the diagnosis, perhaps. The patient might have been more forthcoming to his ghost writer about the lifetime illness and how it had been managed previously, perhaps that as well.

My own experience of exercise induced asthma means I find it perfectly reasonable that the Garmin doctor in 2009 didn't come to the same conclusion as Freeman did in 2011. As to his auto-biog - see my previous comments re expectations.
Mike Highbury - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to Chris the Tall:
> You might want to edit that so it makes sense

OK, legitimate or not the process at the UCI would have been similarly flawed: one doctor and not three as now and the quack involved would still have been as dodgy as hell.

nathan79 - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to sebastian dangerfield:

I'm the same I just don't like Froome. At the end IMHO anything Wiggins was doing, 99% certainty Froome was doing the same thing. Whether it was something illegal, immoral or neither.
sebastian dangerfield on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to nathan79:

> I'm the same I just don't like Froome. At the end IMHO anything Wiggins was doing, 99% certainty Froome was doing the same thing. Whether it was something illegal, immoral or neither.

Well he wasn't getting the stuff that Wiggo got a TUE for.
Chris the Tall - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to Mike Highbury:

Yep, by all accounts Zorzoli was a soft touch - this was the McQuaid era after all - and the rules have (quite rightly) been tightened up and he has been suspended.

But it was the same for everyone, Wiggins did all that was asked of him and took what he was told he was allowed to take*. No one says Lemond didn't win the TDF because the rules now state you must wear a helmet !

*caveat re jiffy bag! And if it comes out that Wiggins incurred a wherebouts violation shortly after that, then we would have some serious evidence.
Mike Highbury - on 24 Jan 2017
ClimberEd - on 24 Jan 2017
In reply to Mike Highbury:

Interesting, to me that sounds like a lot of moaning from someone who didn't get the funds and support she thought she should have for her sporting endeavours.

(discussion of PEDs aside)
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Chris the Tall - on 24 Jan 2017
In reply to Mike Highbury:

For those who haven't time to read her whole account

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jan/24/nicole-cooke-mps-british-cycling-sexist-unaccountable

She may be bitter, but she clearly has a lot to be bitter about
Chris the Tall - on 24 Jan 2017
In reply to ClimberEd:

The fact that she didn't get the funds and support she deserved on a state-funded program due to sexism makes it an issue that is rightly the concern of this committee
Mike Highbury - on 24 Jan 2017
In reply to ClimberEd:

> Interesting, to me that sounds like a lot of moaning from someone who didn't get the funds and support she thought she should have for her sporting endeavours.

> (discussion of PEDs aside)

That's a bit harsh. She was the best female cyclist in the world until Marianne came along. And, yes, she was poorly treated by BC. If you are interested in sporting biogs and I wouldn't suggest it otherwise but hers is great fun.
ClimberEd - on 24 Jan 2017
In reply to Mike Highbury:

Yes, she was, but I presume there are other parameters to funding than just world ranking - to use an example male mountain biking probably gets less support than male road and track cycling (to avoid the gender issue) - it is simply less important. If by chance it does get the same funding I am sure there are other examples.
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Chris the Tall - on 24 Jan 2017
In reply to ClimberEd:

MTB and BMX have both complained that they also get a lack of support and the fact that they are in a catch 22 situation. They do have the ranking points to qualify for the olympics because they don't get funding to go to the qualfying events. And they don't get funding because they weren't in the olympics. But the defense to that is that there is only 1 medals for each discipline, compared to 5 for track and 2 for road.

But there were just as many medals for women as men on the road in Cooke's day, and she was as good as bet as anyone, and had more need for funding and support than the men (less support from her pro team), but simply didn't get it. They weren't getting the kit, getting the accommodation, the training camps and the guy who was supposed to be managing this was swanning about running dodgy errands for team sky.

Have things changed ? Remember the fuss about Lizzie Armitstead's missed tests ? British cycling had assigned a member of staff to double check for whereabouts to ensure no more administrative cock-ups. But when he resigned no-one thought to inform Armitstead or take responsibility.
Mike Highbury - on 24 Jan 2017
In reply to ClimberEd:
> Yes, she was, but I presume there are other parameters to funding than just world ranking - to use an example male mountain biking probably gets less support than male road and track cycling (to avoid the gender issue) - it is simply less important. If by chance it does get the same funding I am sure there are other examples.

This is a gender issue, plain and simple, and women's road cycling was a far bigger thing with a longer calendar then than at present. And the qualification for funding is now, at least, the likelihood of a podium place, which she achieved at both the Olympic Games and the World RR Championships.

You don't have to be a Nicole Cooke fan to note the impact that she had on cycle racing in the UK. Long before she was national champion, aged 16, we were talking about her; this is pre-internet when there was nothing but the comic, remember? During the period of her greatest successes, Wegelius was banned for riding for his Italian team leader because Roger Hammond had no chance; rather different from NC, I'm sure that you'd agree.
Yanis Nayu - on 24 Jan 2017
In reply to ClimberEd:

I think she had a point.
tim000 - on 24 Jan 2017
In reply to Chris the Tall:

does it . dan martin switch to race for Ireland . this was due to the lack of support of road cycling . nothing to do with sex discrimination. British Cycling concentrating on the track.
Yanis Nayu - on 24 Jan 2017
In reply to Mike Highbury:

> You go

She didn't pull any punches! She makes some very good an relevant points very articulately.
malk - on 24 Jan 2017
In reply to Yanis Nayu:

not another asthmatic with TUEs?
1
ClimberEd - on 25 Jan 2017
In reply to Chris the Tall:

Perhaps I shouldn't have used other cycling examples.
I was trying to show that certain sporting events are given priority over others in funding, sometimes this will be between events, sometimes this will be between men and women in the same events, and all gold medals are not equal (I use 'gold medals' as a euphemism, I don't just mean the olympics, but sporting success more broadly)
That's life, finite funds need to be prioritised.

I agree with all her stuff on doping.
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Chris the Tall - on 25 Jan 2017
In reply to ClimberEd:

Have a read of her full account (see link at this time yesterday). It become pretty clear that whilst the male road team were getting the full backing for Project Rainbow, Cooke achieved both a world championship and olympic gold with virtually no help and in certain cases hinderance from the publicly funded governing body. Read the stuff about skin suits and Emma Pooley's needlework !

As much as I applaud what BC has done to promote cycling through elite performance, there is overwhelming evidence that public funds have been used in a discriminatory manner.

ClimberEd - on 25 Jan 2017
In reply to Chris the Tall:

Yeah - but my point is that funds are often used in a discriminatory manner - and you would expect them to be so.
3
Chris the Tall - on 25 Jan 2017
In reply to ClimberEd:

I would not expect gender discrimination with public funds and neither would the select committee - the whole reason why they are looking into cycling is down to the allegations of sexism
Rob Parsons on 25 Jan 2017
In reply to ClimberEd:

> Interesting, to me that sounds like a lot of moaning from someone who didn't get the funds and support she thought she should have for her sporting endeavours.

Crazy. For example, are you blind to the questions of why Cope - the publicly funded national women’s team road manager - was used by Sky as a basic courier in the 'Jiffy bag' incident? Why, in his own words, he had 'been working with Sky a lot and been running training camps with Brad. I spent a month in Mallorca with Brad and the lads motor-pacing' at the time he was being paid by the public purse to manage the women's team? Etc.

I have huge respect for Cooke speaking out in this way; it's a very difficult thing to do. Let's hope the resulting investigations now get somewhere.

ClimberEd - on 25 Jan 2017
In reply to Rob Parsons:

In this example I presume 'someone' decided that helping Sky at the tour was more important, I have no problem with that.

I think that's my underlying position, most of you disagree which is up to you.
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KevinD - on 25 Jan 2017
In reply to ClimberEd:

> In this example I presume 'someone' decided that helping Sky at the tour was more important, I have no problem with that.

You have no issue that funding for UK sport was diverted to support a team?

ClimberEd - on 25 Jan 2017
In reply to KevinD:

Not really - I see Sky and British Cycling as essentially one and the same thing, with British Cycling supporting a pro tour team with financial support from Sky. Sky is great for British cycling and having a British winner of the (male) tour is great for British Cycling so I don't actually see this as too much of a conflict of interest.

I should expand that this perhaps isn't the way that it should be but in practice it is and as a result the aim is to use resources to maximise results - of both.
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