It Pays to Cheat

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I’ve been thinking about writing a post about why, we as spectators and fellow competitors, allow the drug cheats in the sport to prosper after they come out of the closet. I’ve mentioned it a few times in passing, but never really focused on it. I really can’t stand it when Elite riders start talking to me about irrelevant stuff like how fast Levi is riding Strava segements, (supposedly it is because he is so rested now, if you’re interested, I’m not.) and what some of the other “fallen heros” are doing. I wish they would understand I don’t give a shit.

I really don’t feel much like ranting today, but I thought of this because I read a post over at Crankpunk on the subject a couple days ago. It is pretty good and shows that there is almost no financial loss to the caught riders.

Other than Lance, I very much doubt any other rider has a lawsuit filed against them for any monetary reimbursement. Most of the “famous” guys that have been outed are millionaires. Multi-millionaires. I heard Levis showed up at a local ride in a Porsche. It’s a joke. Since I completely disregard any of their careers results, my opinion is that they shouldn’t have a penny in their pockets they received from riding bikes. They cheated/stole, my friends and other deserving athletes, money and life experiences. They should have to give the money back.

I can’t believe how many current young Pros are going to ride the charity events that the “retired heroes” promote. I would never attend George’s, Levi’s or whoever’s Gran Fondo. I can’t believe that current Professional team directors allow their sponsored riders to attend these events.

These guys are putting on camps that charge campers up to $12000 for a few days of riding. You can do it with Ryder in Hawaii, Christian in Rancho Santa Fe, or George at his super chic hotel in South Carolina/. Rich people are paying to hang with guys that used drugs to steal fame and results. I don’t get it.

I say that the proceeds of these camps go back to a rider developement fund for up and coming riders that don’t have to compete against the doping/cheating athletes that are the very ones providing the backing for the fund.

As long as it pays to cheat, riders are going to keep cheating. The sanctions are bullshit. Even if the new 4 year suspensions go into effect, where are the fines. The rules need to be draconian and make it financially disastrous to both the riders and the teams if there is doping violation. I don’t see any other way to stop it, because the sponsors and fans don’t seem to really care. Feel free to click on one of the links above, I think some of the camps might have a few openings.

22 thoughts on “It Pays to Cheat

  1. Matt

    I tend to agree that it’s still somehow not seen as cheating. If guys had been caught cutting the course mid-race we certainly wouldn’t see them as heroes.

    And we certainly wouldn’t ride in their events or buy their clothes.

  2. mark

    Doping in Sport is illegal in some countries but not in the US, unless it can be tied to some other activity that is illegal, like purjury, fraud, trafficing, etc. I’m fairly certain that Levi only has Strava KOM’s on uphill segments that Ricco and DiLuca haven’t ridden yet. They would probably crush all of them, for whatever that’s worth. All those guys make BANK on their training camps and Gran Fondo’s.

  3. teej

    I concur… I will never attend a ride by these guys. It makes me sick that GH has a development team.

    You cheated please move along or disappear now..

  4. Linda

    Not just riders, either, who are doing well financially. Look at all the bucks Chris Carmichael is raking in, due at least in part to his very public association with Lance.

  5. Seano

    You know Steve, this is endemic… look at the NFL, look at business, look at entertainment, look at politics, look at cycling. It is true, has been true and always will be true: if you can deliver enough value, there really are no consequences – the examples are plentiful and will continue to be there.

    I think what really bothers many of us (perhaps?) is the fact that our sport (sadly) is really no different than any other facet of our society. Maybe it was once? Maybe it never was. Reality slapping us in the face can be a bit harsh… kind of like the day we all (ok, just me?) realized there was no way I’d ever ride in the TDF. Harsh.

  6. MSkarp

    Pantani is used in advertising, WTF, Cheater that basically killed hmself.
    Sadly if King Douche had a granfondo they’d have to turn people away .
    I just Dont get it.

  7. NoWay

    These idiots will continue to cheat as long as sponsors continue to pay them to cheat. And the sponsors are fine because the general population thinks cheating is ok.

  8. Terri Thater

    Doesn’t Lance’s soigneur Freddy Viaene work for BMC with Trudi? That guy has to know where the bodies are buried. He’s probably told Trudi. Maybe Trudi can talk and we can pay her something.

  9. Bill K

    We need a Gran Fondo de Floyd, along with a Gran Fondo for the second best cheater.

    and now, the latest word from L.A.

    “If we’re going to be honest, then just say, ‘He’s an a–h—. We had to go after him. He tested positive for being the biggest a–h— in the world.’ Fair. I can live with that,” Armstrong said. “To say that he cheated his competitors? Ask them! Ask my competitors.”

  10. mike crum

    a few times earlier this year, in different parts of the world, people were stonned to death.. it will never happen here in the usa, but the people in charge of whatever sport you participate in, need to set the rules like a marine drill sargent sets from day 1 to his new recruits. these are the rules… break them and you are out.. really simple..the people in charge of cycling need to tell everyone on every team, this is how its going down..your rider cheats, hes out for life, and looses all thats he signed for…be like the marines, and seals, be tough.. set tough rules. get leaders to go by these rules.. cheaters are done for life.. wont happen, but thats how to stop it.. or stone them to death.. nobody cheat then…bottom line is, the pinishment isnt tough enough. maybe i can take them behind the barn for a bit.. i’ll stop picking up hay and pigs all day and pick up one of these 130# cheats.. hahaha!! they wont cheat…

  11. Spice

    or cycling teams buying custom clothing from Hincapie Sports…..a company built on money from cheating.

  12. Not A. Cyclist

    Ok Steve, now you’re really starting to sound like a bitter old man. You already wrote an article or two about your feelings about this, but yet you keep going on and on. But I do think it’s great that you provided links to help me sign up and ride with George, Christian and Ryder.

    Don’t you get it, YOU and your readers are of the minority. Most people don’t give a fuck that these guys did what everyone in the peloton at that time did. And how dare you question what these guys are doing now? You mention that “…proceeds of these camps go back to a rider developement fund for up and coming riders that don’t have to compete against the doping/cheating athletes that are the very ones providing the backing for the fund.”

    Well what do you think the Hincapie Development Team is? What do you think of George doing things like this?

    So I ask you Steve, what have you done to promote cycling? Do you fund a development on your own dime? Are you out there like Levi, George, etc actually trying to change the sport from within? Maybe you should talk to these guys now, instead of just guessing what they feel or are doing? Talk to guys like Taylor, Teejay, Joe, Ben, Ty, etc, etc, etc. How the pros of yesterday are telling them to not dope and don’t make the same decisions they made.

    I think these guys are the ones that should be out there. They should be telling the world about their story, the hard decisions they made and how they were wrong. Sure its easy for guys like you Steve to sit back and criticize since you are really just bitter.

  13. NoWay

    The systematic funding of doping while turning a blind eye continues, nothing has changed. Sounds like somebody doesn’t mind cheating, lieing, and risking the health of young racers.

  14. Bernd Faust

    Seano has it right! And why always pick so much on cycling, because it is still a minor sport. USA is also the country of the people who forgive…….plentiful opportunities, plentiful forgivenesses.
    Time to relax , the man with the big belly is coming soon;
    Frohe Weihnachten
    Merry Christmas

  15. Not A. Cyclist


    To what are you referring? Are you saying that someone is getting young racers to dope? Your response is both incoherent and non-sensical.

  16. Not A. Cyclist

    Seano… do you really think doping during the LA error was the first? Heck no… where’s the call for Merckx, Indurain, etc to admit their doping past??

  17. Andrew

    Doping in sport should be a criminal offence for fraud with very serious consequences. Then we’d start to see real crime & punishment come int.


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