Tour de France 2013 stage-15
  • Marcus Mendez

    science would be reasoned from first hand gathering of data, complete as possible, with a null hypothesis or there of some sort. I would argue this is not about pseudo science or science and cycling isn’t science either, it’s a competition, may the best engineered athlete, however the rule book defines it win. As with many things, if you’re not looking for and edge, you’re not likely trying hard enough. It’s amazing for example that the press isn’t up in arms on tue’s every day till sunday etc. Ironically, astana one last year with a doped rider, proven, sky has a higher bar, but how much higher than it’s competitors should it be.

  • Neil

    I don’t agree with Vayer’s theory that this should be put out there for the people to decide. I’m a big cycling fan, but I don’t know crap about power. What I do know is that Aldo Sassi said that power output analysis was problematic (https://cyclingtips.com.au/2010/09/interview-with-dr-aldo-sassi/ and https://cyclingtips.com.au/2013/07/can-performance-be-used-as-an-indicator-of-doping/). I also know that one off data points (namely one day on a climb) don’t prove anything either – you have to look at more longer term performance.

    • baTonkaTruck

      “I don’t know crap about power” – so why should I care whether or not you disagree with Vayer’s theory? Your beliefs which you admit come from ignorance have absolutely no value in this conversation.

      • Neil

        And you clearly didn’t read my comment. Ignorance indeed.

    • hawaiiguy

      The biggest alarm bell was his heart rate never went above 162-3, that is unheard of at that level. Almost every stage demands you hit the critical 185 bpm at multiple times during each stage, just to stay in contact let alone blowing past the whole field like their standing still and never get past 160. If those are his numbers its very telling he has more power to exertion ratio than everyone else on the tour by a country mile. At least thats what I and all my friends/competitors from cat 1 mountain bike racing are comparing it to. I am a high cadence rider as well and feel very comfortable at 85-100 for 3-5 hour endurance races. But I don’t have any data that doesn’t include max HR in parts in every race and training session. We have never raced and not, not used full power output without going to 185 for at least a minute, sometimes more sometimes less but we always need it to stay on a wheel or pull away. People may say Froome has bigger lungs/Heart to which I say, well where were those lungs/heart prior to joining Sky in 2010 cause the ones he was using prior to that sucked at climbing anything!

      • Wookie

        I have to agree. It’s the HR that I find most unsettling. In one of the stills, it shows cadence of 119, watts of 690-odd, and a HR in the 150s (I hope I remembered all that correctly). Surely that doesn’t stack up?… Can anyone offer some insight as to how this might be possible (being serious, not sarky)?

      • Adam Fo

        Froome’s resting HR is 35 and max 170. Those are the figures he gave to the Guardian newspaper. He clearly has a large heart pumping in his chest. HR is not in-itself a measure of anything.

      • nedcase

        I’d suggest he’s cycling to his heart rate more than the power outputs then.
        I get PAF and have to watch my heart rate so it doesn’t get above 150. What I find is that after a while at 150 my heart rate drops into the 140s and I can up the intensity, slowly but surely. So staying at that level allows me to keep the power down almost indefinitely.
        And heart rate data is sketchy at best. If you look at my Strava readings apparently I can do 300W output at 72 bpm… OK I’m 30kg heavier, 15 years older and the hills are 1/4 of the length but even so :)

  • Wes Schott

    The biggest misnomer is that “it is pseudo science” …please check the following link, skip to the end if you are not an engineer, indirect power calculations are within 1-2% of measurements, which have an accuracy themselves of less than 2%… http://veloclinic.com/intro-to-power-estimate-modelling/

    • Liam O’Dea

      Results “within +/- 2.7% (95% confidence interval)” of a powermeter doesn’t mean you can say anything like the calculations are as accurate to 2.7%. That’s not how confidence intervals can be interpreted. I’d take these calculations as giving good reasons to ask a bunch of questions. But it’s not good enough to answer any.

      • jules

        yes. it only means that it has assessed that error will be within 2.7% of the true value (power) in 95% of measurements. so in 5% of cases the error would be expected to be greater than 2.7%. and that’s all dependent on how accurate the confidence interval has been assessed of course.

        • Jake(Aus)

          So in other words…95% of the time it is going to be extremely close to the actual value.

          • jules

            .. within the confidence interval (2.7% of the true value). whether that’s ‘extremely close’ or not is subjective.

          • Liam O’Dea

            I’m no statistician so am probably off with my calcs but with a sample size of 250, confidence interval of 95% and a standard error of 0.973 (1-2.7%) the standard deviation of the estimated power would be 15W. Formula used: s = SE * sqrt(n)

            390W with 2.7% error at 95% confidence interval sounds much more convincing than 390W with standard deviation of 15W

            • JBS

              Its a simpler calculation than that. If the 95% confidence interval is 2.7%:

              390 * 0.027 = 10.5

              So we are 95% confident that the true power estimate is between 379.5 and 400.5 W (confidence intervals are + and – the estimate).

              • James Dunn

                That’s not how a confidence interval works.

                • JBS

                  Ah what? That’s exactly how a +/- confidence interval works, otherwise its not a confidence interval.

                  A confidence interval is based on the theory that there is an underlying probability distribution behind an estimated value. That distribution may be assumed to be a theoretical distribution such as the normal (bell curve) distribution or it could be empirically derived by simulation through bootstrapping or similar. In that distribution, the 2.5 and 97.5% quantiles (ie the middle 95%) represent the lower 95% value and the upper 95% confidence value. As these are usually symmetrically surround the estimate (and if not they are usually corrected for bias), they are often reported as +/- the observed value (and the number after the +/- will be the distance between the estimate and upper/lower confidence value, ie half the total range). If an estimate is 390+/-2.7% and the +/- is explicitly stated to be the 95% confidence interval, then that is exactly how it works.

                  • Liam O’Dea

                    I did’t think that’s how it works. My understanding is the confidence interval tells you how accurate the mean result of the calculation is, it doesn’t tell you how much variation around that mean there is. There may or may not be a large standard deviation between the reality and the average result of the calculations. The confidence interval doesn’t (directly) tell you that unless you know the sample size and account for that.

                    As an example, the average weight of a young Australian female might be 62.7kg with +/- 0.3kg at 95% confidence interval based on 13000 samples. It’s not to say that 95% of that sample group would be within 62.4 and 63kg.

                    • JBS

                      Sorry nah. Confidence intervals are directly related to accuracy and they aren’t related to sample size (like standard errors and standard deviations are).

                      Your last example sort of (but not exactly) is how a confidence interval works. If the average weight of an Australian female is 62.7+/- 0.3 kg (sample size is irrelevant here, the estimate should be based on an assumed infinite population), but one lady weighs 62.0 kg you are more than 95% confident that she is lighter than the Australian average. If she weight 62.5, she may be lighter, but you aren’t 95% confident that the difference isn’t just random error.

                  • James Dunn

                    Sorry, you’re completely right.

                    I misread your comment as saying take 390w * 0.025 (i.e. 1/2 of 1-.95) to get the upper/lower bounds, which wouldn’t make any sense. Not what you wrote at all, my bad.

                    • JBS

                      Ha, no worries. Could you tell I’ve been writing course notes for next week?

            • JBS

              I should add I do’t think you calcs a wrong, just that confidence intervals are much easier to interpret that standard deviations.

            • jules

              1.3% (2.7% / 2 on 1 side) of 390W is 5.2w. how can the st. deviation be 3 x greater than the confidence interval?

              i’m either confusing myself or somepin’s wrong there

              • JBS

                its quoted as +/- jules, so it (should have) already been halved, its +/- 2.7% on each side

                • jules

                  true. it’s still to big though.

                  • JBS

                    Not necessarily, converting to a standard deviation is assuming an underlying normal curve. The CIs may come from another distribution entire so the standard deviation calculation may not be relevant.

                    • jules

                      would logically be normal distribution to me?

                    • JBS

                      You might be surprised how infrequently a normal distribution assumption is valid for real world biological data. I’d actually be more surprised if it was normal. It’s much harder to increase power output from 390 to 391W than it is from say 189 to 190W (there is the biological cost of the effort involved), so I imagine the probability distribution would have a distinct right side skew to it.

                    • jules

                      I thought we were modeling measurement error of power values (i.e. theoretical power based on climbing pace etc. vs. true power (using power meter reading as closest approximation))? :)

                    • JBS

                      Yeah, but its a biological system producing the power ;)

                    • jules

                      isn’t that anchored though here? it is what it is – 200, 201, 190w? the rider has a power profile – whatever it was increased from and to when they started the Tour, now we’re debating accuracy of modeling that.

                      I’m sure CT is absolutely thrilled with this discussion tangent :)

                    • JBS

                      We could thrill CT for hours…

                      Yeah the argument is around the accuracy of the model and its validity. If you have a model that says the value should be 390+/-10 but the real world data keeps giving you 420 (or 370), then you got to start questioning things. Is there something off with the real world data or is the model wrong? Both questions are equally valid initially.

                    • GGeeeeTee

                      Exactly. The observation is that using a sample of elite level cyclists, maybe the among the most aerobically gifted 200 people on the entire planet, is by definition a skewed sample.

            • JBS

              Oops, I should said your equation is wrong, sorry. Under a normal distribution:

              95%CI = 1.96 * standard error

              Your equation is for calculating the standard deviation from the standard error, not the confidence interval.

    • jules

      there is a degree of self-modulation (?) there though. where apparent error may be 4% in one case (i.e. power measurement +2%, estimated power -2% -> apparently error -4%, true error only -2%), in another case it may be 0% (PM +2%, EP +2% -> AE 0%, TE +2%). so it kind of evens out, a bit anyway.

    • Marcus Mendez

      that’s ridiculous. how about if you have never gotten on a bike a suffered you should discuss cycling. besides not being a science or pseudo science, it is a competition, but more importantly, it is entertainment. the press seems to get this for the good and the bad.

  • Spike

    It may not be an attempt to prove the CF is dopping, it could be an attempt to determine another way to beat him
    If i know Chris can only handle 405w for 5 mins, but i have a guy in my train who can do 420W for 5 mins, then i have him ride of the front bury himself and gap him, and again, and again, blowing through my support train until he’s toasted, while the main GC man holds it steady is aware of the crazyness and uses that to his advantage.

    essentially use the data to ensure that you have Chris into the red,while saving yourself, especially if the data shows CF has a “hole” in his power figures, you’d want to know his weight as well obviously but its an option.

  • MikeP

    There was a picture of Contador’s warmup routine doing the rounds yesterday showing his FTP at 420W. It is well recognised that world class riders have an FTP (W/kg) in the mid-high 6’s. So, 389W average up a single climb that is about 1hr in length doesn’t seem out of the ball park does it? Especially if he’s protected the whole rest of the day and has just been riding Z2/Z3.

    Yes, it’s massive number if the average punter compares themselves, but he’s not the average punter!

    • jules

      we’re dealing with large uncertainties. one of Lance’s key rivals was Iban Mayo, a doper who was a talented climber but reportedly didn’t follow a structured training program and trained ‘from feel’.

      the thing about the EPO era is that it clearly allowed riders to excel, despite obvious flaws or weaknesses in their condition or preparation. it’s reasonable to believe that in the modern era of more scientific training and rider preparation, some of the gains made previously be doping have been clawed back – call them ‘marginal gains’ if you like.

      the same goes for Pantani. I’m reading Matt Rendell’s book at the moment. it seems obvious that he was a pretty chaotic character and did a lot of stuff that would have compromised his form. he made up for that with raw talent and large doses of EPO.

      • MikeP

        That’s all well and good, but today’s cyclists are rather more closely monitored these days. They have specifically developed training regimes, meal plans and even constraints about what they can do when they are relaxing at home with their family.

        *Broad generalisation* It’s not exactly chaotic these days. Apart from of Paolini, people aren’t doing lines til 2am then rocking up to race the next day. It’s all extremely controlled.

        So yes, it’s clinical. There is always some doubt that the ‘marginal gains’ may be a little too ‘clinical’ (if you know what I mean…), but they don’t lead to 1min lead against your rivals on one particular day. Long term improvements, possibly yes, but not any particular day.

        It might be ignorant and maybe I have a little too much belief in the doping controls etc., but it’s nice to believe that everyone is clean these days.

        • jules

          I was comparing more today’s performances with those of yesterday’s (EPO-fuelled) ones. Not Froome vs. today’s rivals. I agree today’s riders are likely more disciplined and their preparation probably more similar – although who knows?

          the other point is that without doping-enhanced recovery, isn’t it reasonable to expect bigger time gaps in a clean field, as riders genuinely suffer and pop?

          I think we’re agreeing.

          • MikeP

            haha.. Can’t be bothered registering to *like* your comment. Consider this your *like*. :)

        • 7tom1ja .
    • Here’s the photo you’re referring to

      • MikeP

        That’s it!

        Not all moderation has to be negative – it can also add to a discussion! Keeping out the trolls AND aiding discussion – Good work CT :)

      • Cam

        Incredible numbers, irrespective of how they are achieved. I only need to lose 10kg and increase power by 50+ watts to join him on a relaxing tempo ride.

        • lefthandside

          Don’t feel too bad – I’ve got the same ‘easy spin’ wattage as Contador, apparently

    • I agree. Those numbers do not seem astronomical and to me do not indicate doping. An FTP in the low 400s seems legit to me. Improvements in training since the 90s can explain why riders can compete with times set back then.

      And unless Froome is a great actor, his pain face is a good indication he is not on EPO. Just look at LA footage. He doesn’t look like he is trying when he is ripping up the mountains at those speeds.

      • Michele

        Yep, the UCI could save a lot of money and do away with expensive blood testing and just measure the rider’s facial expressions :)

        I think Ivan Basso used this methodology when he returned from his doping ban. He’d wear his pain face 24/7 when riding; just so we knew he was trying 100%. That even meant putting it on whilst free-wheeling off a Hors Category climb.

        • Wookie

          Another thought: If pain-face counts for anything, then Fabio Aru must be the cleanest rider in the history of the sport! Not sure how many people would believe that…

  • Anto, NZ

    The data doesn’t prove or disprove anything, it simply provides doubt. For those who are convinced that there is doping going on, then this leak is supportive of their thoughts. For those who want to believe Team Sky are clean, there is now an element of doubt that will only grow as the lines of denial, however true, sound like Armstrong all over again.
    I guess that this is going to force Team Sky to release all their power data, as people have similar doubt about biological passports and micro-dosing. Team Sky have never wanted to release this, but I can see them being backed into a corner. But lets say they do; will it really silence those who think that there is cheating going on? No, I doubt it. Like a relationship where you have been cheated on before, once the trust is gone, its gone.

    • Neil

      Confirmation bias

      • Sean Doyle

        It’s quite the buzz word these days.

  • jules

    Richie Porte will never win a GT, I don’t know why Sky keep persisting with him.

    Richie Porte blew the competition away today while *working* for Froome – definitely doping.

    I’ll offer more expert comments tomorrow after I see what happens in the race :)

    • Neil

      Quality as always.
      Can we get back to arguing about doping?

    • Jonty Paulsen

      Jules I have long not been a fan of yours, Whether you’re being sarcastic or not it’s hard to pick up…
      But I agree, Team Sky’s “program” will be a much higher level than any other team Richie Porte goes too, He’ll probably go to Astana/Movistar/Saxo/BMC as they’ve all had their issues and work with the “program”.

      If people think he’s going to Green Edge they’re kidding themselves he wont be able to finish in the top 10.

      • Nicholas Halliwell

        Everyone knows hes going to BMC

    • Steel

      What on earth are you trying to say here Julsa?

      • jules

        mostly that hindsight is a wonderful thing

    • Sean

      Ahhh you’re the fake Jules.

      • jules

        accept no imitations..

      • Michele

        There’s only one Jules.

        • Sean

          But many Seans.

          • Sean

            Hear hear!

          • Sean

            You pricks. You’re making me look like a Greece or Lance.

            • Sean Doyle

              Nothing wrong with the Seans of this world

            • Dave

              What, are you planning on wasting your money and asking your best frenemy Angela for €130,000,000,000 to cover it?

    • UK TV ran some questions on rider’s salaries, the other day. Porte going to BMC – no big secret, TJ VG – salary rumoured to be 1.4 m per season , based on expectation of GT success rather than results ( up to this point).

      Given that he

  • Chris Brown

    this is the kind of tabloid drivel I would expect on sites like Road.cc not a decent site like this, as for the badgering of Brailsford what was the point in that? just seems childish and pedantic, it was pretty obvious after asking for the second time he wasn’t going to talk about it

    • jules

      nothing wrong with the reporting here – refrains from sweeping statements or character assesments. the comments OTOH :)

    • We believe it’s a story that needed a follow-up. Whether you believe it’s an important story or not is up to you, but we thought we’d actually speak to some experts in the area to put some perspective on it. I have to disagree that it’s tabloid drivel.

    • Karl

      Chris, this was always going to be an issue that the media goes crazy about. That being the case, I’d rather read about it on this site than any other. Whether the elephant in the room is real or imagined, it cannot be ignored. I don’t personally see that the data goes any way to show that Froome is doping. Whether the data is real or fake it is a bit of a non event, 390w average for an hour is not super human. That said, the Sky/Froome haters and tin hat brigade are going to have a field day with this and I’m glad that CT has reported on it in the way it has. Would you rather there wasn’t quality reporting on it and the void was filled by trolls and sensationalism?
      Shane, great article. Wade and team, keep up the great work.

    • Wookie

      Just a note of caution here; not all that long ago, people were making similar dismissals of suspicions around LA. That’s not to say any current suggestions about Sky are true, just that you can’t blame people for asking questions. Likewise, not so long ago the idea of motors on bikes was labelled ridiculous, now the UCI are taking it seriously, and it appears quite plausible. Not surprising then, that some folks are not easily dissuaded about the current suggestions…

  • MJ

    Can the UCI ban armchair critics and ‘internet experts’ – those whose expertise is derived solely from reading other peoples BS on the internet.
    I’ll continue to be a cycling fan and let the doping police do their job. Internet mud slinging is tiresome.

    • Johnson

      Unfortunately as proven many times in the past the “doping police” don’t do their job or more to the point, can’t do their job.

      I find it amusing that people have a go at others for being cynical when it should be the other way around given the doping history of the sport.

      • ummm…

        This one thousand times! It is such a simple observation. If you watch this sport and do not have an iota of cynicism re: certain performances where reasonably warranted as a result of cycling’s history, then I wouldn’t want to do business with you. I’ll be your friend and argue over a pint at a bar, but I won’t trust your judgement in any matter of importance. Plus, doping and the discussion now seems to be an integral part of the sport, for good or bad, and how can you resist such juicy drama? WIth MJ’s logic we should refrain from condemning Bill Cosby for his documented actions, only because he has never been tried and convicted; maybe that last point was off…….

    • ummm…

      What about cycling are you a fan of? This is a serious question. It seems that doping in cycling is a proven fact. Therefore, doping is part of my narrative of the sport. Many of our favorite memories of cycling were brought to us by doping, or at least doping was involved. How do you separate the two?

  • Matt DeMaere

    No one seems to mention, a data file is not hard to manufacture (simulate entirely from scratch) and arguably much easier than carrying out computer intrusions.

    The specification of FIT has no means of assuring authenticity nor rider identity, only internal correctness. Other formats, like TCX are even simpler in that regard.

    Therefore, these files cannot in themselves act as proof. Instead, they could just as easily have been created to provide false evidence that these “not normal” analysis attempts are accurate and precise. Fake data files and these analyses are roughly in the same intellectual territory.

    • Daniel

      If it was a fake, then Sky would probably have said so. The fact that they are claiming it was hacked (more likely, as the article says, leaked in the same way that so many government documents are leaked) probably indicates it’s legit.

      • Matt DeMaere

        Sky gave one possible answer, which probably came to mind the quickest in the immediate aftermath of being notified. In the middle of the tour, I doubt they’ve gone through a process of obtaining and verifying this file matches something in their own archive prior to making the statement.

        So, their current response doesn’t legitimise the data file.

        • Daniel

          How long would it take to verify it? Sky is a professional organisation. I would assume that this kind of coaching data would be kept in electronic form in a central location. A quick call to HQ, “oi guvna (that’s my English accent), go to the S drive, ride data, cfroome folder, 2013 Tour stage X, email it to me”. It couldn’t take that long; certainly not so long that the media would take issue with not being given a statement for an hour

          • James Dunn

            That sounds suspiciously close to how “real” hacking is done. Confidence tricksters rather than elite computer users.

    • Reine Lindqvist

      Really easy to edit power data files if you have some basic knowhow in place – if not you can use http://www.digitalepo.com :D

      The numbers presented from this “leak” can’t be trusted

      • Andy Logan

        This is a valid point and I dont know why any of the Journo’s didnt ask this question. If someone hacked/leaked the information, they are clearly not whiter than white, so why would anyone believe the data from the file? How do we know they didnt edit the data to suit their needs? After all they did manage to obtain it in the first place by underhand means.

        • echidna_sg

          ask yourself why someone would hack in to steal just one file from one rider on one day… there should be years worth of data from every rider in the team if it was an actual hacking job.

          • Johnson

            Its now being called a leak.

        • Shane Stokes

          Andy, the team hasn’t said the data quoted was fake, or inaccurate. It simply questioned how the information was acquired.

      • Johnson

        And Sky could shut it down very quickly if the data was fake, that they have not says a fair bit I reckon.

      • Max

        Agree, but and the thought that sky should now have responsibility to check the data is still intact as posted below is laughable. Data obtained “informally” does not have the benefit of authenticity.

    • A

      Exact opposite. Very very very easy to steal computer data if not protected properly to enterprise standards.

  • James

    I have no idea whether Froomey is doped up to the eyeballs or not but it does seem that there are people out there who want him to be. With Lance all the circumstantial evidence was there with the amount of background chatter going on regarding him doping. Where are all the people with evidence of Froome doping other than his power files from some of the best rides he has ever done? There was so much circumstantial evidence with Lance that only a “true believer” could ignore the truth long before it came out. There’s none of that with Froome, just people searching to make something out of nothing as far as I can see.

    • CC

      James – you’re a good egg. The article is designed to bring out an unfavourable discussion, kinda sad.

      • Not the intent at all CC. We feel that we’ve done the responsible thing by speaking to various people about the story to shed some perspective on it. It’s not trying to kick the hornets nest at all.

        • James

          I don’t have a problem with the story as it’s newsworthy. It’s just that certain people seem to be quick to jump to the “he must be doping to be that good” line of argument (and Vayer seems to be one – maybe after Festina he can’t believe in exceptional clean performances any more?) I totally understand the lack of trust in professional cycling these days but really, if we’re going to demean every exceptional performance (as seems to be the case on so many blogs/forums) especially in the absence of any credible evidence to suggest doping then maybe it’s time to follow another sport? And the amount of people who seem to think they’re “in the know” because yeah, all pros are on drugs blah blah blah makes me laugh…

        • CC

          Wade – I think James covers it well. It’s the negative speculation that gets depressing. I can’t imagine the inner turmoil Froome is going through. Imagine… being at the tops of the game, loving your sport, but having your integrity questioned every time you perform. It’s crazy behaviour. Every single time we see someone do well… slam them down. repeat… I think it’s time we rise above the stigma of lance.

          • Michele

            If I was Chris Froome, I would be extremely peeved off. But my anger wouldn’t primarily be towards doubting Thomases.

            Fact: cycling is not a clean sport. There are riders in the peloton who continue to dope. There still remains more anger about Astana being in the WT than there is suspicion over Froome.

            And just a few days ago a rider got busted – in competition – for using cocaine.

            Froome’s anger should be directed at Astana and those who continue to dope.

            Long-time fans who have invested a lot of emotion. money and time in the sport have reason to perhaps question performances.

            It’s going to take a good few years, maybe decades [maybe never] before the peloton fully regain the trust of it’s fans.

            • CC

              That last sentence, shocking. If it’s true – the sport is dead.

              • Dave

                The most shocking bit of it was the apostrophe.

                The rest is true, the sport has all the credibility of WWE and many fans have moved on to the stage of loving the spectacle without seeing the need to believe it.

                • Johnson

                  Have not read a better post. I enjoy the spectacle but I’m not naive enough to believe what I’m seeing.

    • Whippet

      I remember a time when most people were true believers. And now there are a few new believers.

    • Johnson

      I don’t know about that, certainly nowhere near the circumstantial evidence that there was with LA but there are some things that raise questions. Here’s a guy who really never showed much through juniors and his early neo/pro career, was not highly rated by Sky, was not going to be offered another contract and all of a sudden becomes a potential GT winner. Add the disease in and the way he has changed his story about that a few times. His transformation was pretty extraordinary.

      You’ll forgive some people for being cynical I’m sure given the sport’s history?

  • Skeptic

    It’s definitely worth reading the background and articles of Ross Tucker if you want to understand whether power data and climb times can be used for evidence of doping. http://sportsscientists.com/thread/tour-de-france-analysis/

    There are nuanced arguments that can’t be completely explored in a comments section. All of the points raised in comments here have been discussed in Ross’s articles and tweets.

  • JBS

    So a video of questionable authenticity tracks incredibly closely to a predictive model that uses unsubstantiated assumptions, and that’s enough for Ross Tucker? Sorry, the model may not be pseudoscience, but the extrapolations Ross Tucker is making very much are. When two sources of data with large potential sources of error match closely, there are plenty ways to describe the phenomenon, but “proof” sure as hell ain’t one of them.

    Some food for thought: What was Froome’s body mass on that stage; did anybody throw him on the scales at the start line? When was the power meter producing the video’s data calibrated? What was the wind speed and direction? Were the models and the power data taken from the exact same start and stop points?

    Those are the sort of questions a scientist asks before they publish opinions. They don’t throw the passive-aggressive innuendo out into social media like Tucker does this time every year. Last year it was all about Nibali and how his performances were at the limit of human abilities (one of the world’s best endurance athletes at the top of their game performs at the limit of human abilities, isn’t that we should expect, not condemn?).

    I’ll finish this rant but stating that this isn’t designed as support for Froome. I’m thinking like a scientist; until I have solid repeatable evidence I am not rejecting the null hypothesis (that there is no evidence of doping).

    • Whippet

      The null hypothesis should be: There is doping in cycling. To prove otherwise requires solid repeatable evidence.

      As for The Science of Sport website, I think it is worth repeating what Skeptic said above: “There are nuanced arguments that can’t be completely explored in a comments section. All of the points raised in comments here have been discussed.” Yes, there are opinions in the articles, but they (there are two of them, not just Ross) note when they are discussing data and when they are extrapolating. We don’t have to agree with their opinions, but two PhDs in sports science and medicine with nuanced arguments need to be considered more than our amateur comments.

      • JBS

        But that’s my point, that’s not a null hypothesis, that’s a prosecution. If you want to work from that angle fine, but don’t claim its “science”. A null hypothesis is “there is no evidence of doping”, which you would test against the alternative “there is evidence of doping”. Note the wording “evidence of…”.

        There’s one very true saying in science that the “nuanced discussion” is ignoring…”Garbage in, garbage out”. A dodgy video of uncertain quality and history certainly qualifies as garbage. Coming from another PhD with a long history in modelling biological systems “show me the data” if you want to convince me. Don’t given me innuendo and claim its “science”.

        • Whippet

          There has never been professional cycling without doping, with more than sufficient evidence to demonstrate it. Therefore, to refute this, evidence must be provided to demonstrate the contrary hypothesis better represents the data.

          That video, which I haven’t even watched, has nothing to do with the website in question. The leaked power meter data, however, does seem to support the predictions made from the models used on the website. Ignoring evidence does not mean it doesn’t exist. Which part of their analysis do you have evidence to contradict? By nuanced, I am referring to several years of articles they present, which go well beyond a single video, some twits. And our comments are even less scientific!

      • IndependentThinker

        One of the startling things about these “calculations” is that they do not take account of aerodynamics. They calculate a power estimate based on speed, weight and gradient: http://sportsscientists.com/2013/07/the-power-of-the-tour-de-france-performance-analysis-groundwork/

        You can clearly see from the video, and yesterday’s performance, that Froome was riding behind other riders. Yesterday over the final climb, he averaged 21km/h at a supposed 6.1W/kg. 21km per hour is fast enough for air resistance to play a role in slowing the rider – if this wasn’t the case, then there would be no advantage in having a team work for a GC contender in the mountains, for chrissake!. Ross Tucker in his slightly shifty and evasive way suggested that the number which popped out of the calculations of 6.1W/Kg is just possible. So factor in the effect of riding behind riders like Porte and Thomas, the power to weight ratio necessary to achieve that speed up the mountain drops appreciably, so if 6.1 is just possible, then a lower number is very possible and not remarkable for an elite athlete.

        He also seems to have forgotten that this was a largely flat stage, with Movistar making a tactical mistake by leading the bunch until well up the final climb. At that point, Froome had several of his own team still with him who all proved to be effective (Porte second, Thomas fifth I think) and the reason for this is likely that until the last 8 or so km they hadn’t really had to work too hard.

        These so called calculations to my mind do not prove doping at all.

        • Dave

          I would be interested to find out the magnitude of the draft effect you get behind another cyclist at 21 km/h.

          I’ve always thought on the tough climbs that the benefit is in pacing and the mental boost, not in slipstreaming.

          • michael_gb

            I was interested in the drafting aspect too as the models don’t seem to take it into account. The defense seems to be that the various models correlate with actual power data fairly well. I found the following diagram that implied a 10% saving at climbing speeds but this was done on a flat test. http://www.53×12.com/do/show?page=article&id=89
            Climbing a steep 7% slope only around 10% of energy goes into combating air resistance so if you are putting out 400 watts then drafting only saves you around 4 watts? Thats my bit of pseudo science! Thoughts?

            • JP

              10% of 400 watts is 40 watts not 4 watts…

        • Don Salamon

          Actually, they do account for aerodynamics using a simplified model of frontal cross-section.

          http://veloclinic.com/intro-to-power-estimate-modelling/

          This is really a simple kinetics problem in physics.

        • Rodrigo Diaz

          Sorry, they do take into account aerodynamics. That is exactly what is “speed” on your initial statement. The drafting is not captured, though.

          The equations with the full coefficients are in the Veloclinic website.

          And of course this doesn’t prove doping at all. Heck, even the biopassport doesn’t really prove doping in definite terms (see Kreuziger). It simply is an analysis. This can’t convict anyone. But as cycling fans we have been burned before. Sky looks a lot like Postal – this doesn’t mean they do what they did. But can you blame a section of cycling fans from teetering between skeptical and cynical?

          • IndependentThinker

            Actually, the equation referred to in the analysis by Ross Tucker is a very much simpler equation than the veloclinic one.

            The veloclinic has a stab (and nothing more) at accounting for aerodynamics by considering the impact of drafting on the coefficient of drag. It’s a very simplified treatment that doesn’t take into account the dynamic nature of drafting.

            Another simplification is their treatment of wind. Again, a simple coefficient of wind expressed in W/Kg (they don’t seem capable of getting SI units correct) is used. Wind is a vector – it is not always working against a rider as both wind and riders change direction. Wind also changes in intensity from moment to moment which is not factored into these equations. And another factor is the impact of the road surface on rolling resistance – all cyclists know that some surfaces require more effort to ride on than others. Again, there’s a static value in the equation for CRR (coefficient of rolling resistance) but the number used is a guess, not a measured value.

            These equations show that it is anything but a “simple kinetics problem in physics” – there are far too many variables that are inadequately computed and impossible to record live data for for these models to be anything other than guesses, so drawing conclusions from them is pointless.

            The only record of truth that factors all of these in is the power output recorded by the rider’s power meters and until that’s available, formalised guessing using these “equations” is total BS. The reason informed commentators believe these equations to be pseudo-science is because they actually over simplify a very complex, multi-variant, dynamic (as in changes constantly) problem in a way that looks compelling to people without a scientific or engineering background. And for the avoidance of doubt, I have several engineering qualifications including a degree and twenty plus years in practice.

            • Rodrigo Diaz

              I am engineer as well. Not an aerodynamicist, though (chemical b. Eng.), then a Masters and 15 years of practice (this year!)

              As an engineer, you’d appreciate that the “proof is in the pudding”. And the pudding is relatively accessible these days in the form of Strava. Conveniently, Lotto-Jumbo is very transparent with their numbers. Guess what? Gesink’s numbers are a reasonable match for the model. Same with Ten Dam’s. So what then? Well, nothing, except that say “the model is not really absolute garbage” as the detractors try to qualify it

              So yeah, very many variables, and this should not indict anyone of doping, cheating, or anything else. But unless you are a true believer, you have to accept that these results can make you go “whoa, hang on a minute there”.

              Clearly Sky is on a different level, dusting everyone else. And maybe it is all in the legal, or “gray” unregulated areas (like Tramadol, illegal feeds after the cutoff point, enhanced sleep systems, and heck maybe even supplements like ketone drinks. And maybe Froome really is an outlier within all pro cyclists (heck, that’s why they are paid the big bucks), and has an amazing VO2 max or TH. I’m not being a cynic here – if you’re going to succeed in life through genetic and hard-earned talents, this is the way to do it, by performing in the area where you have the best competitive advantage. Remember
              Eero Mäntyranta?

              Just calling it pseudoscience won’t make it go away, though. It’s close enough to start a discussion. And for what is worth, Coyne’s LA’s War cited the magic number to win a grand tour at 6.7 W/kg. At least we’re below that now in all estimates.

    • jakub

      There was a test made where they compared 250 power files from around 30 WorldTour riders vs. model estimates for the same data. The results were pretty damn close to the fitted line of the model. Anyone attacking these models that they are inaccurate is missing one crucial point. They are not meant to be precisely accurate (that is simply impossible), they are meant to be _ESTIMATES_. And as estimates, they are pretty damn close, and anyone who is claiming that they are not is simply wrong. Unobserved/omitted variables such as exact aerodynamic drag (while going 6-7% uphill) play very small role and have neglibile effect on the accuracy of the results. Not to mention that extended formulas which Tucker and co. are using approximate this from known height/weight of riders. The model forumlas are based on elementary physics, which was proven years if not centuries ago. Anyone calling this “pseudoscience” is making a serious insult to these people. You can hardly make these models more precise from the observed information available. Froome’s 30 minute power output was 459W before he went on to win the Tour in 2013. That is 6.95W/kg at 66kg (he claims this in his book). That is indeed massive power to weight ratio, but Contador should be on par with him, according to photo of his stem (I reckon that 420W at “FTP” = 30 min power, as this puts him close to 7W/kg if his weight is around 61kg, which should be.) To me what is really suspicious is how Sky is able to deliver these massive wattages at the end of stage, not the numbers per se. They are probably using something which is still legal under the current WADA code. There were some rumors about ketone drinks, which cost around 2500E/L (this might partly explain it, as the principle is that during the stage ketones are mainly used as fuel and hence more carbohydrate is available for the final surge.) But seriously, Geraint Thomas who was fighting for classics with Sagan and Kristoff suddenly outclimbing Nibali and Contador? Something’s fishy here for sure.

  • Robert Merkel

    If I may disagree ever so slightly with Shane, the release of only one data file doesn’t necessarily mean that Sky weren’t hacked.

    I agree that it’s unlikely if somebody compromised a Sky server (or Dropbox account, or whatever) It’s possible that a hacker has accessed much more data, and has chosen only to pass on one data file to Vayer.

    As to why they’d do that – here’s one possible scenario. Say that among the materials they have acquired is something considerably more damaging – good blackmail material, in a nutshell. If you wanted to convince Sky that they’d better do what you’ve asked, leaking one interesting but not in and of itself incriminating file to Vayer is one way to show that a) you’ve got something, and b) you’re serious, without giving Sky anything much to work with as to who it might be.

    I’m *not* saying that this is definitely what happened, or is even the most likely scenario. Just that it’s possible.

    And, now, back to another post to talk about the actual racing :)

  • MikeP

    *conspiracy theory alert*

    Perhaps we are seeing the new methods employed by teams to gain the upper hand in GT’s? Gain and leak high level data of a lead rider from another team. Media and general public hound said rider, increasing the pressure on them and the things on their mind, therefore reducing recovery effectiveness and performance.

    Gains your lead rider a small advantage, possibly enough to clinch a win over 3 weeks.

    Something as crazy, but ingenious, as this could only be a tactic of Mr. Oleg Tinkov himself.

    QED

  • That Strava Support Guy

    Aaaaaaand the video is off Dailymotion :(

  • Sean

    The real elephant in the room is, this Shane Miller character isn’t even based in Melbourne. Extraordinary claims of him being ‘Melbourne-based’ need to be backed up with extraordinary proof. I’m betting Mr Miller is in fact busting in ass on his bike for 5 hours today in Perth.

    If basic facts like this are incorrect, how can the rest of the article be taken seriously.

    • Michele

      Sean … You serious? Or taking the p!ss? :)

      • Sean

        Very serious, he isn’t currently living in Melbourne. I like to focus on the real issues.

        • jules

          That’s outrageous. Perth is basically a suburb of Bali.

          • Sean

            facts are facts.

        • Michele

          Well tell him, to update his Twitter Account then.

          You do realise there is a difference between being based at a location and living at a location?

          • Sean

            I don’t need to do any such thing. The people writing articles just need to stick to facts. If they can’t get the basics right, how ever are we meant to believe froome is doped to the gills? After all, this is their story.

    • lefthandside

      I’m pretty sure Shane lives on Zwift Island, doesn’t he?

    • LOL! For full transparency, I’ve only managed 2hrs so far, another 1hr will be on Zwift later today. (7pm AEST for anyone who wants to join in our group sprint session).

      • Sean

        Only 2hrs? you need to find the hard you.

        • Sean

          ‘harder’ would read better…….

  • PieterVP

    The video is now posted here:https://vimeo.com/133412409

  • jules

    here’s what has me puzzled. it’s not Froome’s power figures, or time gaps.

    but rather – how could he (and the rest of Sky) remain so cool in the face of so much doubt and accusations, if he was in fact doping?

    no one else managed it – they all had there coping strategies – go on the attack, stay silent, dodge questions. yet Sky are so open about it all – at least in how they respond to questions on doping (not giving up data, that’s different). it would take remarkable resilience to do that, knowing that you were blatantly lying. Lance couldn’t do that.

  • BBB

    It is strange to see why this sort of thing wouldn’t be regarded as a story.
    To back up a little. Drug use in cycling, as seen through Tom Simpson in 1967, ushered in drug testing in sports in 1968. The Festina bust in 1998 ushered in the creation of WADA. Not content with this, cycling conducted a 10 plus year analysis of itself culminating in Armstrong being torn down a couple of years ago.
    Against this backdrop Sky came into the sport with its cleaner than clean image. Then it got rid of its team doctor on account of his implication in drug usage at Rabobank and then gave riders and staff the option of stepping down if they felt themselves implicated with drug use and several left the team as a result. In addition, a rider who had hardly raised a blip on the radar of professional cycling was suddenly on the verge of winning a GT in 2011 and may have been able to unseat his team leader in 2012 before destroying the field in 2013.
    Against this backdrop, naturally the media and the public are going to be sceptical at extraordinary performances.
    This data gives an insight into Froome’s capabilities. An insight capable of misunderstanding, but an insight none-the-less.
    Why shouldn’t the media, or indeed this site, follow up such a story? Surely Brailsford has been around long enough to know his non-answers aren’t going to make the story go away?

    • Michele

      Exactly.

      If Cycling Tips did ignore this story – and it is a story – then the claims they are pro-SKY or similar would carry more weight than the argument of CT becoming tabloid journos or having it in for Brailsford & Co.

      For the record I *think* Froome is clean for the same reasons that Jules mentioned above. And I have no problems with this CT piece.

    • Dave

      “Surely Brailsford has been around long enough to know his non-answers aren’t going to make the story go away?”

      From a PR perspective, he doesn’t really have any other option. Claiming it’s a leak/hack says the data is real, if he says it’s false data nobody will believe him, if he says it’s false data and releases the real data it will only open up more questions.

    • Johnson

      Spot on.

    • Adam Fo

      Armstrong was a poor liar. His body language gave him away from the very beginning. Anyone from insurance assessors to the Police trained to spot untruths could see it including me.
      I don’t know Froome but I have met his dad Clive. He believes his son rides clean and bought him up to tell the truth.

  • In the meantime, guys like Gesink are uploading all their data to Strava: https://www.strava.com/activities/345923267

    • That’s awesome. Thanks for the link.

      I hope you’re not still in that hospital bed!

      • Ha no, I’m riding a ton already. I should probably update my avatar…

    • bc

      Love how all the LJ guys load up their stuff. 409W for the last 43mins for Gesink. A quick search says his weight is 68-70kg. 5.84-6.01W/Kg. He copped a bit more wind though!

  • I think Shane Miller’s comments are spot on. Brailsford, likely to be pulling what hair he has left, to discover the leak source, or if it’s known, prevent it being repeated.

  • db

    The data in question has already been shared by Sky with external parties – Le Monde and others included. So, there is clearly more sources other than Sky computers from where this data could have come from….

  • alexroseinnes

    Forget Tucker, and Festinaboy and that video, just look at the astonishing performances by Sky yesterday. From Froome making the rest of the contenders look like children, to Porte blithely riding up to Quintana and overtaking him, to Thomas (a classics specialist) trading punches with the world’s best GC riders. This kind of domination rightly needs to be questioned. This is a team that hired Geert Leinders.

    As for Froome – dubious missed test excuses, a highly irregular TUE in 2014, and this data leak cast a pretty long shadow.

    • Cam

      As opposed to the rest of the peloton who are all as clean as a whistle.

      • alexroseinnes

        nice straw man.

        i happen to think that astana are a disgrace, but that has nothing to do with this discussion.

        • Cam

          Of course it does, the assumption you have made is that Sky is doping based on yesterdays performance, so can we safely assume that all of the other teams are clean based on the relative performance? I don’t think so.

          • alexroseinnes

            ok so you’ve graduated from making a strawman argument to putting words in my mouth.

            nowhere have i said that sky is doping, just that their dominance invites suspicion. the burden is on teams to be transparent, it’s not like cycling hasn’t betrayed our trust time and time again. it’s high-time that teams provided data to the public.

            my point is simple: cycling fans should no longer suspend disbelief when we see outlier performances.

            • Cam

              I don’t disagree, all I am saying is that an outlier performance by one team shouldn’t absolve the rest of the teams in the peloton.

        • jules

          more moral equivalence :)

          • alexroseinnes

            Where?

          • alexroseinnes

            All the logical fallacies are here!

            • Adam Fo

              Yes in your own post, an appeal to possibility to take something for granted

    • Daniel

      Lord knows I don’t want to jump in too hard to defend Froome’s honour (I’m sure there are plenty of ex-Lance supporters who are now regretting a similar decision) but I think your last sentence is a bit rough. The data leak of itself isn’t that bad; it’s not like it’s showing him rocking 460 watts all the way up. You’ve stated “dubious missed test excuses” as a plural. I’m only aware of one missed test, and it wasn’t terribly implausible that the hotel staff wouldn’t let someone up. TUE is an issue.

      • jules

        meanwhile the world celebrates Serena Williams’ Wimbledon victory. if Froome used her excuse for dodging a doping test, the internet would have broken.

        • Dave

          But women’s tennis is bad enough without them all playing clean, it’s clearly a case of the lesser of two evils.

      • alexroseinnes

        Stray “s”. Still, the hotel excuse doesn’t hold water for me.

    • Adam Fo

      You think the testers turning up whilst Froome was on holiday at 7am is normal ? Wondering why the hotel didn’t let them in.
      I noticed on one of the hardest stages of the tour Froome was woken up at 6.30 am for a test.
      Froome finishing 1.30 sec ahead of the 3rd place man is not unusual in tour history.

  • I think that this news story is extremely important for several reasons.

    First and foremost, assuming that the leaked data are valid, they support the work that Tucker, Mike P, and ammattipyöräily have been doing for years now. If their VAM estimates are pretty close, then this debunks the spurious accusations by Brailsford and others who refer to them as pseudoscientists, basically trying to discredit their modeling. This form of character assassination is not all that different than that used by one Mr Lance Armstrong.

    Secondly, this story allows the public to engage with, and understand that often incredible performances of these athletes. It’s not surprising that a majority of the public is skeptical about super human performances given the history of doping, so if new discussion and debate about the veracity of these performances can lead to assurances or new information then that is a positive.

    Finally, doping methods are clearly more advanced. From the days of rampant drug use in the early 1900s, to modern day micro dosing, it’d be naïve to assume that the present anti-doping controls are catching everyone. Recent issues demonstrating the issues with testing following micro dosing, or even the certitude of the biological passport, mean that scientists should be generating novel and creative means of determining whether performances are suspect.

  • Nicholas Halliwell

    I think this data shows that working out power values in the way vayer and others do on twitter is fairly accurate seeing as skys data backs that up. I think this isnt to suprising seeing as Ferrari used to use the same sums as they do and as a trainer and doctor in terms of performance he knew what he was doing. My whole issue about the doping question is it gets focussed to much on individuals ie froomes not normal or armstrong or wiggins or nibali. When all reality from reading Hamiltons book and the general trend on sport if froome is on it then the other top competitors of his are probably doing something similair. The question I prefer to ask is it possible in the current system to dope, get away with it and have big performance gains. From recent reports, testimonies from the amateur circuit and documentaries in which micro dosing was shown to pass the WADA biopassport it seems likely to me that big gains are possible without being caught, therefore I think its fair to say they are quite likely doing it.

  • The fashion police

    What about the gears he is pushing! From the online speed and cadence calculators, assuming a compact, he doesn’t even touch the easy half of the cassette, 34×16-21 would be the range. I had always assumed when he hit 120rpm (at “super high cadence” to quote Dr Ferrari’s website) it was in an easy gear, wow!

    • Dave

      Mont Ventoux is not a ridiculously steep climb though, it’s long and constant with the toughest kilometre having an average grade of 10.5%.

      I would expect most riders to use a 52-36 mid-compact for a Ventoux stage these days.

  • pedr09

    420+ watts at 148 HR? How is that possible?

    • Tom Wells

      Because the data is wrong. He was pulling over 400 watts while sitting in the bunch which makes no sense at all when he was pulling away doing 350 a bit further up!

    • TWGH

      This – the HR figures have to be wrong. Just look at the strava data pros post today. Gesink yesterday had an average HR up the last climb of 175 or something.

  • Alan

    I’m not very worried either way. For years now, I have been treating pro cycling as world championship wrestling with scenery.

  • D-Man

    Remember that episode on Happy Days when The Fonz jumped the shark? Ayyyy!!!!
    This article just seems a little… unbalanced in its approach (tabloid would be too harsh a criticism). I have trouble accepting any analysis of Frome’s performance based on power data which, by its own admission, cannot be verified as legitimate. There’s a fine line between reporting current events vs giving a forum to every doping conspiracy theorist happy to latch onto anything which will prove them right “I told you he was a cheat – they’re all cheats. And I knew before anyone else did! Which makes me super smart. And you’re just stupid if you think they’re clean.”
    Let’s put the water skis away and stick to actual facts…

  • NonR
  • dsd74

    Funny how a little innuendo about doping in cycling gets the internet flooded with comments, yet when a tennis player admits that corticoid injections helped him during the match, well that’s ok.
    Here’s a question: is it possible that having a combination of TUEs can have the same resulting benefit as more traditional (and illegal) doping methods? Just curious…
    And does the UCI or WADA have to independently validate the need for a TUE with their own doctors/staff, or do they just rubber stamp a doctor’s note? Because I’m sure it’s really not that difficult the shop around for a doctor who will give you the diagnose you want (as what often happens for people to get a leave of absence for “injuries” or “illnesses”).

  • Superpilot

    I found this interview interesting, seemed like it was all a bit off the cuff. I’m just gonna let you guys all get dark about the article instead and have a chuckle. http://www.steephill.tv/players/720/nbcsports3/?title=Geraint+Thomas+Post+Stage+10&dashboard=tour-de-france&id=TwPKlYjOJAPQ&yr=2015

  • Chris Froome

    I am clean.

    • Good effort to post this while climbing the Col du Tourmalet! ;)

      • choppy

        if luca paolini can tweet during a race, then i have no problem with froome posting here whilst looking at his stem going up the tourmelat!
        p.s. but he needs to realise that having a shower and a good scrub after a “marginal gains” treatment before he gets on the bike in the morning doesn’t necessarily make you clean…

      • Sean

        His phone is mounted on his head stem ya twit :-)

  • Derek Maher

    My advice to Chris is don’t start preaching about midnight tests and wanting other teams tested more at altitude camps (Gives the impression you are trying to shift the focus onto other pro riders).Also try not to miss the vultures when they call at your hotel to test you.Just stick to the line.I don’t use illegal substances and leave the rest to your Press officer.
    The hounds are after Chris because he made all the other stars of the peloton look 2nd rate on the climbs and todays stage proved it again.
    The data hack of an old power test just shows he had a good day and the journalists can spin it any way they want.Plus Chris has crushed the opposition and the media need another story to fill their pages with.

  • hawaiiguy

    The thing about Froome thats even more alarming is prior to joining Sky, and I mean immediately prior, is Froome never ever in the 5 years prior to 2011 was anywhere near the top 50 riders and he sure as hell couldn’t climb a hill let alone a mountain. Then within less than 1 year he’s holding back so that he doesn’t overtake Wiggins in the Tour De France? Thats the biggest glaring doping scandal right there. Wiggins was pretty much mediocre(in the mountains) as well prior to Sky. So is it “great sky training” that made 4 guys(Porte and? on stage 10) the best climbers since Armstrong, (Froome has actually beaten him 2 of 3 in comparisons) OR is it that as soon as they signed with the slithering lizard tongue Rupert Murdoch all the rules went out the window to win at any cost? Given the financier behind Sky I think the latter is pretty telling as that guy (Murdoch) needs to win so bad they intentionally kept a dead teen “alive” (Milly Dowler) in the eyes of her parents and police just so they could sell a friggin worthless tabloid paper! Working for that kind of person alone is pretty telling, 5 minutes with him and you walk away needing a DEFCON 1 chemical shower to get rid of the stench and poison I imagine.

  • Joseph

    Someone has to win the race. You can’t just say he is a doper because he won. Sky are good at picking the stages to make the effort on.

  • Joseph

    Someone has to win the race. You can’t just say he is a doper because he won. Sky are good at picking the stages to make the effort on.

  • Adam Fo

    What subject was Anton Vayer’s degree in, anyone know ?

  • 7tom1ja .

    I ll say just one thing; has there ever been a clean athlete when there was so much doubt

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