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Impulse Athletic Coaching
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Good article. But to think Manolo Saiz is the worst is hardly the truth. The other guys are just as guilty as Contador. Eg, I have a feeling that Ricco in the Giro was so pissed at Contador because his own dope wasn't enough to put him at the top. I'm sure he and his team dropped a lot of money for 'only' 2nd place.

I wonder how many more Fuentes are out there but haven't yet been exposed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I agree thoroughly. Basically two "rings" have been busted. The Fuentes one (did this include Checchini?) and the Freiberg Clinic one. I find it hard to believe Ferrari wasn't up to something similar given his reputation, although I'm not sure there were any indications of this is his trial, it was probably early enough that blood doping hadn't become necessary to get around the EPO test.

Whoever was doing Postal/Discovery has never been found out, which of course, may be related to Ferrari but there have been plenty of rumors of another Spanish clinics run by ex-ONCE docs.

I found the Slovenian doc part interesting. Eastern Europe would seem to be the obvious place to still be carrying out this sort of stuff without being under much threat of discovery or prosecution.
 

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cyclingfansanonymous.blogspot.com said:
Another strange thing about the Puerto case is the contradictory decision by Judge Serrano that Fuentes had not endangered public health. According to El Pais, there was at least one cyclist whose medical records showed damage to his health done by Fuentes, yet these records were never requested by Serrano despite pleas from prosecutors. Also consider that during the initial investigation, Serrano was asked by the Guardia Civil to authorize phone taps to gather additional evidence. According to Spanish law, Serrano could only authorize phone taps if he had sufficient evidence to believe that a crime was being committed. He did authorize the phone taps, so at that time he must have had some evidence that Fuentes was endangering the public health. Yet later on, he suddenly changed his mind and shelved the case. Why? Was it a willful miscarriage of justice, determined by the outside influence of higher Spanish officials? This is what El Pais said in an article appropriately titled "An ignominious end for a landmark probe"
I'm certainly no expert on Spanish law, but it is unlikely that the judicial standard for authorizing a search is as high as the judicial standard applied when the judge shelved the case. Nor do we know what was in the documents used to secure the authorization and how that compared to what the actual evidence ultimately showed. This particular aspect of the article, which is all I'm commenting on, has more than a bit of tinfoil hat to it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
harlond said:
This particular aspect of the article, which is all I'm commenting on, has more than a bit of tinfoil hat to it.
Well it could have been much worst. He didn't even go into the whole notion that it was Fuentes implicit threat via a media interview to expose footballers that essentially shut the thing down.

I don't know enough about Spanish politics, law etc. but my understanding is that Real Madrid and FC Barcelona are sort of quasi government-backed teams, or at minimum get preferential treatment. I believe it was Barcelona and Sevilla players that are rumoured to be involved with Fuentes.

It really is a shame that there is essentially no English investigative journalism or even insightful journalism around cycling.
 

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Dwayne Barry said:
Well it could have been much worst. He didn't even go into the whole notion that it was Fuentes implicit threat via a media interview to expose footballers that essentially shut the thing down.

I don't know enough about Spanish politics, law etc. but my understanding is that Real Madrid and FC Barcelona are sort of quasi government-backed teams, or at minimum get preferential treatment. I believe it was Barcelona and Sevilla players that are rumoured to be involved with Fuentes.
I don't know much about that. What I know is that OP has always been a weird investigation. The natural targets of the underlying criminal statutes were medical professionals providing substandard medical care. The natural victims under that statute are the persons receiving the care, in this case the riders. It never made sense to use this statute to expose or harm the victims and for the judge to conduct this investigation in a way that minimized harm to the victims (if there were any) is hard to see either as irresponsible or as a coverup. Having concluded that there was no crime, why should the government then permit its prosecutorial machinery to be employed to ruin the lives and careers of the persons its investigation was intended to protect? I know most people don't view OP from that perspective, but that's the way I've always looked at it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
harlond said:
Having concluded that there was no crime, why should the government then permit its prosecutorial machinery to be employed to ruin the lives and careers of the persons its investigation was intended to protect? I know most people don't view OP from that perspective, but that's the way I've always looked at it.
Except it all did orginate because of Jesus Manzano, no? And he did claim the practices hurt him. So while certainly many of the cyclists that Fuentes treated obviously don't think they were hurt by it, there do appear to at least be a few that think they were harmed.
 

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NeoRetroGrouch
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Dwayne Barry said:
Except it all did orginate because of Jesus Manzano, no? And he did claim the practices hurt him. So while certainly many of the cyclists that Fuentes treated obviously don't think they were hurt by it, there do appear to at least be a few that think they were harmed.
But that is no reason to investigate the riders involved. They didn't harm anyone. - TF
 

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Dwayne Barry said:
Were the riders being investigated or merely providing evidence in relation to Fuentes and company?
Well, if you're asking whether the riders were being targeted as potential suspects, hard to see how they could be under the particular Spanish statute unless the rider was suspected of providing medical services to others. But obviously it's difficult to investigate provision of medical services without there being both a provider and a recipient. I'm not sure where you're going with this.

Dwayne Barry said:
Except it all did orginate because of Jesus Manzano, no? And he did claim the practices hurt him. So while certainly many of the cyclists that Fuentes treated obviously don't think they were hurt by it, there do appear to at least be a few that think they were harmed.
Criminal investigations often begin at the behest of the victim, but the victim's belief that he has been done wrong is not binding on the state. There could be many reasons why the state would conclude no crime was committed even though Manzano thought he was injured and even if he was in fact injured. Medical care is not necessarily substandard or criminal simply because the outcome is non-optimal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
"I'm not sure where you're going with this."

The previous post seemed to be suggesting the Spanish judiciary were "going after" the riders, but I don't believe that was the case. They were just providing evidence as witnesses, no?
 

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Dwayne Barry said:
"I'm not sure where you're going with this."

The previous post seemed to be suggesting the Spanish judiciary were "going after" the riders, but I don't believe that was the case. They were just providing evidence as witnesses, no?
That would be my conclusion.
 

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That is a good article - but - what's more revealing - that the Spanish shelved it - or that the UCI has done nothing about it - for me it's the later.

Only thing I can think of that the UCI has come up with since OP blew up is - biological passports - and their sincerity with that approach is undermined - by their refusal to provide that data to the TDF this year.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
In fairness to the UCI, which has historically almost never missed an oppurtunity to not act on a doping issue if they could avoid it, in this case they can't get at the evidence to actually do anything with it. Probably one of the best points in favor of a cover-up is the fact that not only are the Spanish judiciary not pursuing the case, but they won't let anyone else see the evidence they have.

To my knowledge, the only actual evidence to come out of Spain was the summary document to the UCI, which got a bunch of riders black-listed by the PT teams, before the 2006 Tour and whatever the Swiss courts got in the Ullrich case. I don't think even the Italians got any actual evidence, Basso and Scarponi foolishly cracked under questioning rather than doing the old deny, deny, deny routine. Basso could be sitting as pretty as Contador at the moment if he'd just kept his mouth shut.
 

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One could also argue that why if the Swiss and Germans succeeded in forcing the retirement of former TDF winner Ulrich and the Italians in suspending the former Giro d'Italia winner Basso - why does the UCI have a goose egg?
 
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Dwayne Barry said:
I don't think even the Italians got any actual evidence, Basso and Scarponi foolishly cracked under questioning rather than doing the old deny, deny, deny routine. Basso could be sitting as pretty as Contador at the moment if he'd just kept his mouth shut.
It may not be foolishness, their conscience's may have finally got the better of them - which isn't a bad thing at all.
 

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Dwayne Barry said:
To my knowledge, the only actual evidence to come out of Spain was the summary document to the UCI, which got a bunch of riders black-listed by the PT teams, before the 2006 Tour and whatever the Swiss courts got in the Ullrich case. I don't think even the Italians got any actual evidence, Basso and Scarponi foolishly cracked under questioning rather than doing the old deny, deny, deny routine. Basso could be sitting as pretty as Contador at the moment if he'd just kept his mouth shut.
I thought the Italians were starting down the road to DNA testing. Basso knew his goose was cooked, so he made a non-confession confession that stopped further investigation and saved his Giro win.
 

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TurboTurtle said:
But that is no reason to investigate the riders involved. They didn't harm anyone. - TF
Really? What about the 15 year olds getting caught doping in Spain? Wonder where they got the idea?
 

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FondriestFan said:
Really? What about the 15 year olds getting caught doping in Spain? Wonder where they got the idea?
Start at the beginning of the post, follow the thread and figure out the context - then post. - TF
 
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