Cyclocross

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Motor Doping on PRI

Crying

An emotional Van den Driessche Responds to cases or mechanical fraud on Sporza

BBC’s The World on PRI interviews Bike Hugger about mechanical doping, tonight on an NPR station in your listening area. Also see my Motor Omertà story from yesterday, and these news updates

As I said on Twitter this weekend too

Wasn’t My Bike I Was Racing should rank right up there with Unborn Twin AND Jack Daniels as worst doping excuses ever.

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UPDATE

Just after posting this article, PRI’s The World story dropped on their site with quotes from David Schloss

“I’m not surprised someone put a motor in a bicycle,” says David Schloss, an editor at Bikehugger. “But I’m pretty saddened. I think that any doping really defeats the point of the competition. This just takes it to a whole new level.”

“My suspicions were tweaked the first moment when spectators and magazines and the TV shows all said that it wasn’t possible at all,” he says. “Because they all said the same thing about every type of biological doping.”

Motor Omerta: Motor Doping at CX Worlds

An eAssit motor from Vivax

Got back from a ride this morning, to news of motor doping at CX Worlds. Femke van den Driessche was participating in the U23 Women’s Championship, and a favorite to win, but was forced to abandon with one lap left to go. Her bike was inspected by mechanics post-race, when the motor was found. The UCI’s sporting director told Sport Wereld

“The UCI has defined technological fraud and we can confirm that this is the bike of Femke van den Driessche,” said Smets.

When we first learned about motor doping (motors embedded in bikes) the collective response from the racers, marketers, and managers strongly indicated to me that it was true. See, they protested way too much, just like the Doping Omertà before this. Now it’s a Motor Omertà.

Because the racers have no union to protect themselves (like other Pro sports) and shut news like this down, it’s even worse for the fans, and the biggest thing the sport has to reckon with is the total loss of trust.

I was not surprised in the least with this discovery, and to anyone that denied motors in bikes existed, you shouldn’t have been either. The motor was confirmed by the UCI AND considering they use fiber optic video to examine bikes, I don’t doubt the probable cause. The UCI has been getting ready for this for two years. They even developed prototype illegal bikes to prove the concept. At Koppenberg cross, Femke was 5% faster than all the other women, that may have been on the factors that got the UCI’s attention.

This is a developing story and we’ll follow up as we learn more. Like everyone else, I’m fascinated to see what the UCI caught. Was it a DIY or from a manufacture? For an example of how concealed motors work in bikes, see the Vivax eAssist product page.

Hoogerheide Highlights


Highlights from Hoogerheide and a taste of what’s to come this weekend at CX Worlds.

Tyler Farrar at the Tour Down Under

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Farrar finishes Stage 3 on a fan’s bike after he crashed near Cudlee Creek. Photo: Anne Fedorowytsch.

The news from the TDU today is that a fan gave Tyler Farrar his bike and shoes after a crash. Tyler went on to finish with no penalty – there’s a rule against taking a nonteam bike, but hey, it’s the TDU? Who’s paying that much attention. According to the Adelaide Advertiser, Anthony Tooman, gave Tyler his shoes because of the mismatch between Shimano and Speedplay.

“We could see him (Farrar) on the side of the road and asked ‘do you need a wheel?’ and he said ‘na, a wheel is not going to cut it’,” Tooman last night told The Advertiser.

“Then it went to ‘well, what pedals are you running?’

There isn’t video of the bike and shoe swap, but see the reporting of the crash here with an unlucky racer upside down on the side of the road.

I haven’t seen Tyler since we raced cross together, but he grew up in Washington state and I watched he come up through the ranks. During that race he said, “On your left Bro” and, “F this is hard.”

Great to see Tyler back in the news, now let’s hope for something better than a crash…..



CX Nats Edit

U.S. Cyclocross Nationals 2016 Highlights from In The Crosshairs on Vimeo.

Quite possibly the best CX course ever, in the States at least…and nice drone work.

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