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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
let's just say Contador goes on growing in stature as a rider and has a Merckxian or Hinault-like season soon, i.e. winning lots of races, maybe even some one-days too, and does it for a large chunk of the season.

Would that point to clean rider/cleanish sport or him gaming the system?

Keep in mind, when there weren't game-changing drugs around riders rode at a pretty consistent level year round and a dominant rider could dominate across large chunks of the season.

With the EPO/Blood transfusion era, riders would be pedestrian or worse for much of the year, and then world beaters for a few weeks or so and then back to a rather more tame level (if they bothered to race at all).
 
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IMO a cleaner sport won't change that aspect much, I think the tendency toward specialization will remain. As long as certain races or GT's are far more important than the majority of other events it will continue to be beneficial to peak certain times of the year.

And with the current level of training knowledge I think it would be hard for any one rider to be strong over a large portion of the season while talented riders like Boonen, Cancellara, Gilbert etc. focus hard on certain events or periods of the year.
 

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Dwayne Barry said:
let's just say Contador goes on growing in stature as a rider and has a Merckxian or Hinault-like season soon, i.e. winning lots of races, maybe even some one-days too, and does it for a large chunk of the season.

Would that point to clean rider/cleanish sport or him gaming the system?

Keep in mind, when there weren't game-changing drugs around riders rode at a pretty consistent level year round and a dominant rider could dominate across large chunks of the season.

With the EPO/Blood transfusion era, riders would be pedestrian or worse for much of the year, and then world beaters for a few weeks or so and then back to a rather more tame level (if they bothered to race at all).
I hate to say but if I saw a rider like Contador do that, my first thought would be genetic doping.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
kytyree said:
IMO a cleaner sport won't change that aspect much, I think the tendency toward specialization will remain.
Of course one can peak naturally but that peak woud be relatively minor compared to what one could achieve if the peak included addition of doping products as well. Especially if the pre-peak included extracting blood which would put you in a "valley" making the peak appear even higher.

And of course one could consistently dope to maintain a high level, but with the risk of failing a test, it only makes sense to minimize risk by chancing the doping at certain times to maximize returns while minimizing risk.
 

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If your're going to go all "back in the day"

then you'd have to comment on the level of rider who rode back then. How do they compare to today? I don't know, i've only been following cycling since Lance started winning the Tdf, but if overally, there are more racers that are better now then back in Hinault's day, then you could easily argue that the diversity of winners today (look at P-N 2008) is an argument for lack of doping. Right? In other words, if there are more and better riders now (I don't know if that's true or not) then to dominate for whole stretches of a season would be harder to do, so a rider might actually try to "peak" for certain events only.

Just my thoughts.

BT
 
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