WADA Puerto Blood Bag Issues

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I saw an article last week about WADA’s legal issue, thus worry, with the blood bags it got from Operation Puerto.   The World Anti-Doping Agency got the blood bags from the Spanish courts back in July of 2015.  Since then they have sat on the information they have.

And they have the names of supposedly 36 athletes.  Not all cyclists, but all guys that were planning on cheating their respective sports.

I don’t get it.  They can’t suspend the athletes because the time has run out.  So, the least they can do is embarrass the shit out of them, showing them all of being “potential cheaters”.  And I say potential because, I’d assume, that many of these guys have never tested positive for doping.  And many are probably retired.

I applaud retesting blood and urine samples as the technology gets better.  They did it at both the Olympics recently.  I think it is just another way to keep athletes considering the risk/rewards from doping.  When they think that they might be outed years after they cheat, that might stop them from starting initially.  I don’t know.

But this “legal” question is weird.  Just give the names to the respective countries cycling federations and let their legal departments deal with them.  I’m sure there is a country to where it isn’t illegal.  Then they can release all the names.  Let the dick athletes sue them.  I doubt they will.    I really don’t know, but there seems that there should be a way to do this.

I’m not sure why we are having so many issue with standing up for the “legal rights” of these athletes that cheated over 10 years ago.  We are rewarding them by having a screwed up system that can’t get control of the evidence until the statute of limitations has expired.  Seems backwards for some reason.

39 thoughts on “WADA Puerto Blood Bag Issues

  1. KrakatoaEastofJava

    I think its fair to say that it doesn’t matter anymore. And at this point, I don’t want to know. No charges were brought against individual riders (for whatever reasons), and even cheaters who were never charged deserve (at some point) to have things settled once and for all. Personally, I’m ready to move on regarding this one.

  2. Bryan Barber

    WADA is a farce! Dick pound is fat politician.
    Lance Armstrong is just another pawn in the world of the authoritarian governing bodies of UCI, IOC, USAC, USOC …
    We already know who most the names are, I don’t think it matters if we find out the rest even if it’s Rafa Nadal or Serena Williams.
    Until cyclists unite and wrestle control of their futures from the fat cats, this will go on and on and on
    Those who still speak of lance Armstrong as the scourge of cycle racing are completely ignorant of who and how cycle racing works.
    The bottom line is that it benefits dick pound, WADA or the UCI nothing to release this information. They’ve already nailed Lance Armstrong to the cross and you all sat there and cheered like ignorant fools.

  3. dakcloud

    This sport is such a train wreck. I want to rediscover the beautiful sport that I once thought professional road racing to be but in reality it’s too late for that.
    The riders and their stupid actions have ruined it for me and I couldn’t really care less if the sport just dried up and disappeared.
    Cheats and dopers and drugs oh no!
    Cheats and dopers and drugs oh no!

  4. Pete A.

    It was never the utopian sport, Tommy Simpson died on the slopes of Mt Ventoux from doping with vials of dope in his jersey.

    Sponsors want wins, teams want wins, TV needs heros, we demand idols. The riders do what it takes to meet expectations. All the other pro sports are as or worse than cycling. Riders get caught and we act so pious.

    Lance stands to lose millions but Trek, Shimano, Specialized, Bontrager, ……….. stand to lose none of millions & millions in hugely increased sales of their before small company products.

  5. Larry T

    I have no hope that handing the names of the cheats to their NATIONAL Federations will do much. Will the Russians or Spaniards release the names they’re given? Taking enforcement/sanctioning actions AWAY from the national federations is the goal, one they’re working on at present. I agree with Tilford – the names on the bags (or DNA evidence of whose blood was in ’em) should be made public, but fear of legal action will likely prevent this. Why should Valverde, Basso, etc. be the only ones shamed? Why only cyclists? Anti-doping movements are far from perfect, but too many seem to think they should just be discontinued and a “let ’em dope” attitude should prevail. Should only the easy-to-enforce rules be enforced? Why have rules at all then?
    If rules are done away with, it’s no longer SPORT, just commerce/entertainment.

  6. Bolas Azules

    My guess is their only real option is to try to embarrass the riders now seeing as how each respective county would have differing laws on how to deal with each of their riders.

  7. Confused

    Round ’em up & deport ’em…..wait, that’s illegal immigration laws we are not supposed to follow.

  8. Mary Pelletier

    Because many of the CYCLISTS were already named, but none of the tennis players, futbol/soccer stars etc. I support the full release of ALL names even if there are no consequences.

  9. Ted

    You can subpena WADA to provide the names – very simple – just takes one person to do this with the proper court.

  10. Jim

    I guess I don’t quite understand the “legal” part of this.
    Does anyone really think that an athlete named in the report would have the balls/ovaries to sue over it? After all, the proof that he/she was involved is “in the bag”. Pretty hard to refute the evidence when it is from your own body.
    I would hazard a guess that there are bigger things at stake (like the people running the show) than the athletes who were caught.

  11. conrad

    Amphetamines and such only get you so far, especially in stage races. Blood products and motors are a different deal. It’s impossible for a clean rider to be competitive against that. So if you have the UCI making deals for some riders and not others, it is a total farce. Other sports that are more skill based, tennis for example, doping doesn’t change the competition as much.

  12. Mike Rodose

    Get some new blood bags then. Fill the funnel! Meantime, let’s get these stale fuckers too.

    More fodder the better.

  13. Mike Rodose

    Just like the Joe Papp conviction. Joe was busted, but only 1 or 2 names of the 190 athletes he sold Chinese EPO to were named.

    Say it ain’t so Joe!

  14. Rope a Dope

    “If the gloves dont fit aquit!” These lucrative cheaters will hire a Dream Team of Lawyers. The blood bags only have nicknames thus very hard to convict on circumstantial evidence. Right OJ? Huh, what, LA? Oh maybe on DNA Testing?!

  15. Steve Tilford Post author

    Rope-They know the names. They have other blood samples that the athletes supplied to compare them to. So, it would be very hard to argue it isn’t theirs.

  16. mike crum

    then a bunch more actually get busted.. who gives a fuck… your blog but how bout no more doping posts.. fuck, all these clowns cheat.. enough already..

  17. Jim

    This post was titled “WADA Puerto Blood Bag Issues” so it was pretty obvious what the content would be.
    Maybe if there is a reference to drugs you don’t read it so you don’t have to get upset?
    How about that tactic?

  18. Mark

    Crum, if you are so unhappy with what Steve writes about on his blog, why do you keep reading it and making all of your negative comments?

  19. Mike crum

    Jim, Idc what the title of the post is . It’s still another post on drugs. No I don’t get upset . Not at all cause I’m one that believes that every pro cheats. Cycling football tennis swimming weight lifting triathletes. Etc.

  20. Dose of Reality

    Puerto is so long ago. Does anyone really care, especially considering the multitude of current doping issues in sport? Had this been resolved within a year, it might be relevant, now, it’s little more than a wikipedia footnote.

  21. Jim

    And you know they all cheat? How??

    I would bet a LOT of money that I am closer to them than you are and I know, 100% positive, that not every pro cheats. You obviously think otherwise but I know.

    BTW, what is “Idc”?? Kid speak?

    You must get upset (call it what you want) because you felt you had to say something.

  22. Dave Uhlig


    I raced with you a few times, years ago down in Kansas. Great to see your blog and I’m glad your doing well from the accident. Keep up the posts and I greatly enjoy your insight and thoughts on the sport we all love.

  23. KrakatoaEastofJava

    OK guys. Whatever. But I think you’re going to get a huge chuckle out of the names. Most of them are names from a LONG time ago. People who are long since irrelevant in the sport. Many of them people who got caught out in other cases, long since adjudicated.

  24. BZ

    Thumbs up, but Steve cares. Although he also rides a titanium frame and rocks a weird headband 🙁
    Nothing is retro to our cycling hero.

  25. jpete

    I care. The truth of the breadth of everything needs to be out. Only when we really understand the past, openly, can we judge the present.

  26. Dave King


    Let me get this straight.

    If cyclist unite and control their futures, doping scandals like this will stop? Or doping will stop? Because really it is the former that slows to a trickle while the latter continues or worsens in sporting organizations or players associations that police themselves. See NBA, NFL, MLB, football, etc.

    It doesn’t matter if we don’t know who the cheaters are? It clearly does. The possibility that an athlete’s past or current doping could be revealed at any time goes squarely into the risk category of deciding to dope. There is also the loss of future income through sponsorships and the possibility of being barred from their sport’s Hall of Fame. And, yes, those things really do matter to these athletes.

    Just because some people still speak of Lance and Co does not mean they are ignorant of cycle racing and its history or think that he is the scourge who is responsible for all of its doping. Most of us are well aware of the doping that happened on other teams and in other sports, but the Lance/USPS still generates interest because it was denied so strongly and for so long, there appears to more info out there than has yet to come to light, and because, well, Lance was a world-wide super-star who generated interested before 2012 – so why wouldn’t he still generate that interest. In addition, he is unapologetic and unrepetant – until he is, he will continue to generate interest.

    I don’t understand why you find it necessary to mock another poster for posting factual information that contradicts your own. In essence, you decry people making Lance the scourge of cycling and going back to the past to do so, yet you want to make Dick Pound a scourge yourself – even though he hasn’t been president of WADA since 2007.

    Lance being “nailed to the cross” suggests that you view him as a martyr and that his punishment has been unjust. He knew the rules (even if they weren’t always or evenly enforced), he certainly understood the risks of his actions (even if he ultimately underestimated them) not to mention the consequences, and he bullied and sued others to protect himself. Like his former teammates, he had the opportunity to cooperate with USADA and thereby reduce his sanction. He clearly thought he would once again slip through and evade justice. He played his hand and for once he lost.

    WADA and other organizations and people who speak out against Lance and others that dope – this is not done just to justify their existence or to “nail them to a cross.” They work (not always with 100% success) to enforce the rules. It’s also done to protect clean athletes and those athletes who dope but would prefer not to. Nowhere in your rambling, ad hominem rant is this acknowledged or addressed. As someone who was a clean athlete who competed against many doped cyclists in the 90’s/2000’s (including Lance, Christian and Dylan), I know what horse I have in this race. For someone like you and others who want to hush up investigations or talk of doping/dopers, I don’t understand your motivation to argue this point – unless maintaining the status quo on doping is something that you benefit from.

  27. Bryan Barber

    Thank you for the intelligent thoughtful response! I’m sorry I’m late getting back to it. I’m sorry about the writing. I really do suck at it. I looked up ad hominem and still don’t know what it means.
    I think I generally agree with you regarding the future doping so, it’s more a matter of elevating the rider to an equal position with the owners and administrators of the sport. The Riders are currently just pawns in this game. We build them up and then we ceremoniously knock them down. It’s sadistic.
    I would like to know the names. But I don’t think it’s going to have much bearing on anything going forward.
    I like talking about Lance. He’s a major part of the cycle racing experience over the last two decades. It’s terribly annoying though to hear people furthering the narrative that Lance is responsible for the downfall of bicycle racing. This only serves to deflect blame from where it belongs on the UCI and WADA and Dick pound who invented WADA and headed it every year that lance won the Tour and never tested positive. I am totally blown away by the logic that says he’s a terrible despicable person because he denied breaking the rules VEHEMETLY.
    I absolutely do not consider Lance to be a martyr. If I remember that Jesus Christ story correctly, crucifixion wasn’t fair punishment for his crimes it was because he was a major threat to the establishment. “Even if they weren’t always or evenly enforced” contradicts what you say was just. You say “they work (not always with 100% success) to enforce the rules.” I would say that number is much closer to 0% than it is 100%. It is beyond pathetic and ineffectual.
    I raced against Lance in the 80s. When he was a teenager, long before he had money or sponsors or probably even knew about doping. He was on the top of the results page and I was on the bottom. He showed himself at a very early age to be at superior endurance talent. I’m not sure what this experience has to do with anything other than the simple fact that I know Lance is not the devil and I’d rather spend time focusing on those who are currently manipulating the sport to the detriment of it’s athletes and fans.
    My motivation is simply to see the sport move forward. It still feels like were stuck in the Festina days with no idea what to do next.


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