Monday, August 31, 2009

The Doping Devil

Posted without comment, "The Doping Devil":

"Almost ten years have passed since this book was first published. The occasion was the widespread revelations of doping during the Tour de rance in 1998. In the media there was a deluge of articles, commentary and letters to editors, the great majority of which shared a common sense of outrage and condemnation. A few contributors adopted a contrary view and took the opportunity to propose a legalisation of doping. The far-out views of this minority could have been countered by solid arguments, but none of sport’s leading figures, whether they were managers or politicians – not even those from the world of cycle sport – had the least desire to entertain that possibility. The time was not right for unprejudiced debate. Least of all in Denmark.

In 1996 the proud son of the nation, Bjarne Riis, had achieved the unthinkable by winning the world’s most arduous cycling race. On his homecoming he was greeted like a king. His victory had raised patriotic sentiments to euphoric heights. Two years later it became clear that victory laurels had been borne home from a world that was far from ideal, and suspicions began to fester that Riis’ victory had been won using unsavoury methods..."

Full text here.

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