Doping Since the 1800′s
You might not see your favorite rider on this list, but that’s just because they didn’t get caught.
Here are some other names: Fausto Coppi, Eddy Merckx, Jacques Anquetil, Marco Pantani, Levi Leipheimer, Bjarne Riis, Alberto Contador. Got the drift?
Yup, all took enough drugs to actually get caught with banned substances in their blood. And they’re the famous ones out of thousands.
And that’s after the authorities started testing for known substances, forget about unknown substances.
The first known cyclist to have drugged to keep up actually died doing it, which is how it was discovered.
In 1886 cheating wasn’t illegal in competition— just like taking Adderall is not illegal now for college kids cramming for tests.
In 1924, following their abandon of the Tour de France, the first real drug scandal arose when they gave an interview to journalist Albert Londres. “They said that they used strychnine, cocaine, chloroform, aspirin, “horse ointment” and others drugs to keep going,” writes Wikipedia.
Any big mouth who goes around calling everyone else a cheat is likely a cheat themselves, because if they hadn’t been, they would have been shed off the back of the peloton at the first stage of the Tour de France.
Here is an excerpt from the “incomplete” list of cycling dopers since the 1800′s compiled by Wikipedia:
“The acceptance of drug-taking in the Tour de France was so complete by 1930 that the rule book, distributed by Henri Desgrange, reminded riders that drugs would not be provided by the organizers.”
Some of your favorite riders of all times were dopers, and they weren’t banned for life from bike racers, among them the great Eddy Merckx:
“1969: Eddy Merckx of Belgium tested positive for the stimulant Reactivan at Savona during the 1969 Giro d’Italia, after leading the race through 16 stages. Merckx was found positive at doping control and expelled from the Giro. Merckx steadfastly denied the charges.”
in 1964, drugs were banned from the Tour de France. But if anything, drug use continued and increased.
In 1996 alone there were so many incidents of drug abuse–detected that is, that’s it almost hard to keep track. This was long before Lance Armstrong is said to have started doping in earnest:
- Rolf Aldag of Germany admitted having used Erythropoietin (EPO) in preparation for the 1996 Tour de France on 24 May 2007. In the press conference with Erik Zabel they said that he experimented with EPO.
- Udo Bölts of Germany confessed publicly on 23 May 2007 to having used EPO and growth hormones in preparation for the Tour de France in 1996 when he was withTeam T-Mobile, and continued in 1997. Consequentially Bölts resigned as the sports director of Team Gerolsteiner on 24 May 2007
- Bert Dietz of Germany confessed publicly on 23 May 2007 to having used EPO in preparation for the Tour de France in 1996 when he was with Team T-Mobile, and continued in 1997.
- Christian Henn of Germany used banned substances (including EPO) while riding for the T-Mobile team in the mid-1990s. He admitted this in May 2007.
- Brian Holm of Denmark admitted doping during the 1990s in his 2002 autobiography. This did not cost him his job as manager for the Danish national team, despite some concern about him being a role model for the young riders. In May 2007 he admitted having used erythropoietin (EPO) on two occasions in 1996 at Team Telekom.
- Levi Leipheimer of the United States used a banned substance as an amateur during the 1996 U.S. National Criterium Championships, when he lapped the field. It was later reported by VeloNews that Leipheimer tested positive for a banned substance after the Championship, and a disciplinary panel recommended that he return his title. The Leipheimer family confirmed the violation, claiming that Levi had innocently used the allergy medicine Claritin-D to relieve hay fever symptoms. The family claim that USA Cycling later relaxed its standards regarding the use of allergy medicines, however Ephedrine remains a banned substance. USA Cycling’s official records name Matt Johnson as the 1996 event’s champion.
- Rita Razmaite of Lithuania tested positive for Bromantan. She was suspended, along with a Russian coach and a Belarussian doctor, by the International Olympic Committee.
- Bjarne Riis of Denmark won the 1996 Tour de France under the effects of EPO, growth hormone and cortisone. On 25 May 2007, he admitted “for a time doping was a part of everyday life for me”.
Filippo Simeoni of Italy admitted in 2002 that he was instructed by doctor Michele Ferrari in 1996 and 1997 on how to use the EPO and Human Growth Hormone that were prescribed. He also testified in court that he had used doping since 1993. Dr. Ferrari was also Lance Armstrong’s doctor and this led to a public falling-out at the 2002 Tour de France. In 2001 and 2002 Simeoni was suspended for several months for doping use.
- Erik Zabel of Germany, on 24 May 2007, admitted having used Erythropoietin (EPO) in preparation for the 1996 Tour de France. In the press conference he said that he experimented with EPO for a week, but then stopped due to severe side effects. Zabel also publicly apologized for having lied about his use of EPO in the past.
- The Telekom Affair – In May 2007, several former riders admitted to using banned substances (including EPO) while riding for the team in the mid-1990s, including Erik Zabel, Rolf Aldag, Brian Holm, Bjarne Riis, Bert Dietz, Udo Bölts and Christian Henn including the seasons in which Riis and Jan Ullrich won the Tour de France.
By the way, folks, the list goes on and on. But, Lance Armstrong is the worst man in the world, he should have known better!
Put that in your sanctimonious pipe and smoke it!
One more thing folks, how many of you don’t take any drugs for any purpose? How many of you have never cheated on your spouse or significant other? How many of you have never lied?
Here is the list from Wikipedia: