I’ve had the “pleasure” to listen to Greg Lemond, and his wife Kathy, talk candidly about their experiences with Lance and his posse. Some of the stuff has been published, most of it not. At the time, most of the stuff seemed almost impossible to believe.
Then the whole lawsuit about the triple crown $1,000,000 and the following Grand Jury investigation of Lance and the Postal Service team. I’ve seen Frankie Andreu a few times the last few years. Frankie is a great guy. A Midwestern guy. I would never think of talking to him about any of his experiences with the whole thing.
What sent me off on this post was when I saw that Velonews published an article where Betsy Andreu vented about the whole suspension of the criminal charges against Lance and a few other things. And on VeloNews.com it is one of the most read articles. Obviously, she is pretty upset about the whole affair. It has affected her life dramatically. I felt badly reading the last statement she wrote – If I can add, I know to the majority of VeloNews readers I’m despised. I have said people’s opinions of me only matter because Frankie still works in cycling. I’ve been a very vocal critic not only of Lance but of drugs in sport, and behind the scenes, am doing what I can to help have clean sport in America. People are loyal to their beliefs and for those who hate me and don’t believe me, nothing will change that. Should it ever be proven beyond a reasonable doubt that Lance used PEDs and that there was criminal activity, some people will still refuse to believe it. And there’s nothing you can do about that.
She is under the impression that the “majority of VeloNews readers” despise her. I hope that isn’t true, but it really doesn’t matter, it is her belief. And that belief makes her feel like an outcast in a sport that her husband has based most of his life participating in. That is sad.
I was looking for something on google and came upon this exchange between Frankie and Jonathan Vaughters, the owner, czar of the Garmin Team. I don’t think I ever saw this before.
It is an article from back in 2006 from CBC sports. Here is the link to the article. I’m not sure where the CBC got this exchange, but it seems pretty incriminating to all involved.
How much did Floyd Landis, in yellow, know about doping in cycling? Plenty, according to Jonathan Vaughters and Frankie Andreu. How much did Floyd Landis, in yellow, know about doping in cycling? Plenty, according to Jonathan Vaughters and Frankie Andreu.
In-Depth: Cycle of denial
Implicated on the Internet
An instant messenger chat between two prominent cyclists challenges Floyd Landis’s assertion that he’s unfamiliar with doping techniques
Last Updated Thurs., Jan. 3, 2006
An instant message between Frankie Andreu (FDREU) and Jonathan Vaughters (Cyclevaughters) the morning of July 26, 2005.
Cyclevaughters: frankie – hey – thanks for talking the other day
FDREU: no problem, where are you
Cyclevaughters: back in CO
FDREU: nice, I just got home, isnt’ it like 5AM
Cyclevaughters: sometimes i think i’m going to go nuts
Cyclevaughters: it’s 5am
FDREU: I agree, I came home and the air conditioning is broken
FDREU: did your kid grow twice it’s size in the two weeks you were gone
Cyclevaughters: yeah, his feet look bigger for some eason
Cyclevaughters: anyhow, i never can quite figure out why i don’t just play along with the lance crowd – i mean shit it would make my life easier, eh? it’s not like i never played with hotsauce, eh?
FDREU: I know, but in the end i don’t think it comes back to bite you
FDREU: I play along, my wife does not, and Lance hates us both
FDREU: it’s a no win situation, you know how he is. Once you leave the team or do soemthing wrong you forever banned
Cyclevaughters: i suppose – you know he tried to hire me back in 2001… he was nice to me… i just couldn’t deal with that whole world
FDREU: I did not know that
FDREU: look at why everyone leaves, it’s way to controlling
Cyclevaughters: once I went to CA and saw that now all the teams got 25 injections every day
Cyclevaughters: hell, CA was ZERO
FDREU: you mean all the riders
Cyclevaughters: Credit Agricole
FDREU: it’s crazy
Cyclevaughters: So, I realized lance was full of shit when he’d say everyone was doing it
FDREU: You may read stuff that i say to radio or press, praising the Tour and lance but it’s just playing the game
Cyclevaughters: believe me, as carzy as it sounds – Moreau was on nothing. Hct of 39%
FDREU: when in 2000-2001
Cyclevaughters: so, that’s when you start thinking… hell, kevin was telling me that after 2000 Ullrich never raced over 42%— yeah moreau in 2000-2001
Cyclevaughters: anyhow – whtever
FDREU: After 1999, you know many things changed. lance did not
FDREU: I believe that’s part of whey kevin left, he was tired of the stuff
Cyclevaughters: yeah, i could explain the whole way lance dupes everyone
FDREU: what abut GH climbing the mountains better than azevedo and the entire group
Cyclevaughters: from how floyd described it, i know exactly the methos
FDREU: explain that, classics to climber
FDREU: when did you talk with floyd
Cyclevaughters: i don’t know – i want to trust George
Cyclevaughters: but the thing is on that team, you think it’s normal
Cyclevaughters: or at least i did
FDREU: i guess. anything with blodd is not normal
Cyclevaughters: yeah, it’s very complex how the avoid all the controls now, but it’s not any new drug or anything, just the resources and planning to pull of a well devised plan
Cyclevaughters: it’s why they all got dropped on stage 9 – no refill yet – then on the rest day – boom 800ml of packed cells
FDREU: they have it mastered. good point
Cyclevaughters: they draw the blood right after the dauphine
FDREU: how do they sneak it in, or keep it until needed
FDREU: i’m sure it’s not with the truck in the frig
Cyclevaughters: motorcycle – refridgerated panniers
Cyclevaughters: on the rest day
Cyclevaughters: floyd has a photo of the thing
FDREU: crazy! it’ just keep going to new levels
Cyclevaughters: yeah, it’s complicated, but with enough money you can do it
FDREU: they have enough money. Floyd was so pissed at them this entire tour
Cyclevaughters: anyhow – i just feel sorry for floyd and some of the other guys
Cyclevaughters: why would lance keep doing the shit when he clearly has nothing to prove – it’s weird
FDREU: I know. me to. they all get ripped into for no reason
FDREU: he’s done now, thank god. but they will prove next year for Johan’s sake that they are the greatest
Cyclevaughters: and then lance says ” this guy and that guys are pussies”
FDREU: they won’t stop
FDREU: I agree
What is weird is how these guys talk about getting on the wrong side of the Lance. As if it’s matter of fact that it isn’t a good thing to have happen to you.
I have no personal experience in any of this. But it makes me wonder why all these guys would go out of their way to just make trouble for themselves by lying? I see no reason why Tyler Hamilton, Floyd Landis, Emma O’Reilly, Frankie’s wife, etc. would lie under oath just to make their lives miserable.
I am sick of the whole thing really. Our legal system and maybe even our sports governing body don’t have a means to deal with the subject properly. So I kind of wish it would just disappear and we could just write it off as a dark era of the sport. But that doesn’t make the people that were directly affected, and are still affected, have closure. Those are the people that I think got the raw end of the deal. The innocent bystanders that got caught up in the whole mess and became some of Lance’s foes by default.