Wednesday, June 13, 2007
OH MY...WHERE DO WE BEGIN...
I got so fed up with allegations and revelations and accusations and misstatements and misrepresentations and fresh admissions and old denials last autumn that I left this blog project alone. I wasn't sure I would return to it this spring, the time when all cycling enthusiasts begin to think about...you know, the Tour de France.
Yeah, I thought about the Tour throughout spring. I read Cyclingnews.com every few days or so. And just kept sighing and wincing and getting disgusted through all the continuing allegations, revelations, etc. I now wonder when, or if, the Tour de France and professional cycling will recover from these past twelve months?
But I recently decided to give my blog and the Tour de France another go. I'm one who would rather see something beautiful that is badly wounded through to healing and hope than dismiss it and walk away. As far gone as professional road racing seems to be right now, there is some hope and there are some clean cyclists and programs (they say!).
(1) I distrust the Tour de France organizers, the anti-doping organizations, the labs who serve at their bidding, and the French press that has its own self-serving agendas. ASO has taken the approach of "guilty until proven innocent" and "guilty by association or suspicion" and has alienated lots of folks. The anti-doping organizations pass questionable methods and imprecise science off as infallible truth. Some labs have acted unethically and bungled simple projects. And the French sports press, well, read it for yourself.
(2) I distrust the riders and their team directors. I don't think all are doping or cheating in other ways, but at this point you have to keep perspective: some of those who've been proclaiming their innocence for years have, in fact, been lying.
So, with this I mind for the sake of keeping reality somewhere on the horizon, I'll reengage the Tour de France. I do so with hope at heart. It may take years for the integrity and luster of the Tour de France and professional cycling to be restored...so let the restoration begin.
Photo: American David Zabriskie rides the time trial at the Dauphine Libre