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Damsgaard not so independant?

iainf72iainf72 Posts: 15,774
edited January 2009 in Pro race
Via CFA

It seems he's set up his own shop now and is running it as a business, a la ACE. What ever happened to "I'll do it until the passports are underway properly"? He either has no faith in the passports or has decided being an academic is boring and show me the money...and free bike.

Bad bad news IMO. Have a read of the article on Podium Cafe too.
Fckin' Quintana … that creep can roll, man.
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Posts

  • DaveyLDaveyL Posts: 5,167
    Option 2 definitely.
    Le Blaireau (1)
  • Beat me to it, once again. Shows it pays to be sceptical about this business.
    More censored hitting the Armstrong fan.(either way works :wink: )
    There always seems to be an agenda within an agenda.
    That's why I'm not surprised.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • KléberKléber Posts: 6,842
    The more I think about these schemes, the more I dislike them. They are PR schemes. As we've said before, if Daamsgard "catches" a rider, it's possible the entire team folds and so the Dane's revenues dry up and his business goes belly up. There's an enormous conflict of interest at stake here.

    As we saw with Astana and Gusev last year, the Russian was sacked for abnormal values but nothing was taken to the UCI, this is wild west justice. Did anyone outside the set-up launch an inquiry?

    It's also a total damnation of the UCI's testing system, teams are saying "look, you couldn't catch a fish in a barrel. The public knows it and the only way we can try to regain credibility is to use these private agencies". If I was Pat McQuaid, I'd get Damsgaard and others to run an entire scheme for the UCI and fund it by a levy on all Pro Tour riders licences, because the riders would benefit from greater testing, not just for their health but because the reduction in scandals would keep sponsors in the sport and boost rider earnings.
  • micronmicron Posts: 1,843
    These programmes aren't there to catch but to conceal - they're doping control programmes, not anti-doping programmes
  • KléberKléber Posts: 6,842
    That's my concern too Micron, that the poachers are using gamekeepers as consultants to make sure the values look good and fall within the right parameters.

    After all, remember that the Italians hired Professor Conconi to run a significant part of the CONI anti-doping operations, but this merely seemed to give Conconi the inside track and he continued to "prepare" many well known riders.
  • DaveyLDaveyL Posts: 5,167
    micron wrote:
    These programmes aren't there to catch but to conceal - they're doping control programmes, not anti-doping programmes

    Perhaps you'd care to enlighten us as to how these things are concealed then? I'm not clever enough to work it out on my own.
    Le Blaireau (1)
  • I'm surprised that cycling teams (or any person or team) are allowed to contract with private firms for drug testing due to the inherent conflicts of interest mentioned by micron & kleber but I understand that WADA has to have sight of the contract for the testing program & the contract must state that all positives will be reported to WADA & the sports governing body to be WADA compliant.
  • They can't win can they?
    If teams don't set up their own systems, they're "turning a blind eye"
    If teams do set up their own systems, they're simply "doping control programmes"
    Remember that you are an Englishman and thus have won first prize in the lottery of life.
  • KléberKléber Posts: 6,842
    They can win, they can fund independent organisations like the UCI to conduct more tests.

    When you have private companies involved - money - things go wrong. Just look at the credit ratings agencies, a prime factor behind the seize up of the financial sector today. The ratings agencies were paid by those selling the bonds but the ratings were essentially for those buying the bonds.

    There's a blatant gap and conflict here. I'd like the UCI to act here and get ahead of things but... :roll:
  • Could it be that Saxo and Astana are just buying insurance for their riders with the Damsgaard program. If any of their riders were to be flagged up by the UCI passport scheme then the teams would use the Damsgaard testing as evidence against any claims me about there riders?

    Can the small Pro teams afford programs like Damsgaards? If not then all these test programs should be disbanded and placed under UCI control. ( I now I must be joking but it all we've got).

    If they don't do this cycling is going to become like the football where only the with the super rich teams dominating the whole race calender.
  • moray_gubmoray_gub Posts: 3,328
    DaveyL wrote:
    micron wrote:
    These programmes aren't there to catch but to conceal - they're doping control programmes, not anti-doping programmes

    Perhaps you'd care to enlighten us as to how these things are concealed then? I'm not clever enough to work it out on my own.

    Im intrigued by microns claim as well i wonder if he has any PROPER evidence to substantiate it ?

    MG
    Gasping - but somehow still alive !
  • stagehopperstagehopper Posts: 1,593
    Firstly Damsgaard - I'd have thought the biggest conflict of interest was the one last season where a public hospital/laboratory was running private drug controls/tests for private multi-national teams?

    In my experience this sort of work is almost always farmed off to small private companies run by the academic. Been standard practice in the UK for a good 20 years with most Government institutions having business managers are there to help who drum up custom and aid in setting up the company.

    Do we also know what his relationship was with the hospital in terms of % time working there rather than on CSC/Astana samples? He's been the International Ski Federation's "Anne Gripper" for a number of years so I suspect he was being at least part-funded by the ISF and must have been spending a of time on their work. It reads more like a long overdue slightly messy divorce from Bo Belhage and his hospital.

    CFA's comment that "Previously Damsgaard was employed by Bispebjerg Hospital and was paid a salary by the hospital, and was never paid directly by the teams, which gave a greater sense of his independence from possible team influence." doesn't hold water for me. How can it be a greater sense of independence when all the hospital was doing was acting as the account holder for the money with Damsgaard running the testing scheme and receiving the money he asked for? That is, to quote CFA quoting Berlingske Tidendea, "a fig leaf".

    Many people don't trust these internal schemes at all so this should be semantics to them anyway.

    Oh and the free CSC bike is a red herring in all this.

    Kleber - the teams and the riders are already paying extra money to the UCI to set up the blood passport system.
  • KléberKléber Posts: 6,842
    Moray Gub wrote:
    Im intrigued by microns claim as well i wonder if he has any PROPER evidence to substantiate it ?MG
    OK, here's a case to review: http://www.bikeradar.com/news/article/t ... usev-17730

    We have a rider who posts "abnormal values", not abnormal so he gets asked a few questions, these are so abnormal he gets fired.

    Note the text of the article which says "This proves that Dr. Damsgaard’s system works and we are committed to racing clean" (Johan Bruyneel) and then concludes with "Gusev’s release is effective immediately and he is 'free to seek employment with another team or company'."(team spokesman Philippe Maertens).

    In other words, you're sacked for doping but other teams can sign you. Why no ban, why no UCI investigation?
  • stagehopperstagehopper Posts: 1,593
    Kleber - I'd suggest the UCI couldn't touch Gusev as he was caught using Damsgaard's blood passport sysytem and as of July 2008 when he was sacked the UCI didn't sanction any riders based on suspicious blood profiles, only when definitive evidence was found. However Astana I suspect had it in the contract with their riders that they could be sacked in Damsgaard found any anomalies which he perceived to indicate doping.

    It's the difference between the quantitative approach to catching dopers which has been in place until now which requires evidence of the doping product, and the qualitative approach which Damsgaard and Catlin have championed and allows scientists to look at profiles and say these changes are unnatural.

    The blood passport system is all about adding the qualitative approach to the quantitative approach but until its in place the UCI will not have the legal powers to do to Gusev what Astana could.
  • iainf72iainf72 Posts: 15,774
    Kleber - the teams and the riders are already paying extra money to the UCI to set up the blood passport system.

    The UCI were having problems funding the passport scheme last year. Yet the "clean" teams were paying almost double the UCI's shortfall to people like Damsgaard and ACE. Wouldn't it have been better to funnel that money into the UCI? After all, they're looking at taking real action.

    It's unfortunate it's the UCI - It really should be a 3'rd party. As I've said before, and operational part of WADA which goes across all sports.
    Fckin' Quintana … that creep can roll, man.
  • stagehopperstagehopper Posts: 1,593
    I sort of agree with you ian regarding all that extra money being "wasted", but when so few people inside and outside the sport trust the UCI, surely the idea behind seeking independent experts such as ACE, Damsgaard and Catlin was to bridge the credibility gap on doping with potential sponsors, media, the public etc that the UCI was repeatedly unable to? Thus for the teams it was necessary expenditure.

    If, and it's a huge if, the blood passport scheme gets underway and is demonstrably shown to work, and some form of credibility is restored to the UCI on doping issues, then the teams would see no need to spend the extra cash.
  • moray_gubmoray_gub Posts: 3,328
    Kléber wrote:
    Moray Gub wrote:
    Im intrigued by microns claim as well i wonder if he has any PROPER evidence to substantiate it ?MG
    OK, here's a case to review: http://www.bikeradar.com/news/article/t ... usev-17730

    We have a rider who posts "abnormal values", not abnormal so he gets asked a few questions, these are so abnormal he gets fired.

    Note the text of the article which says "This proves that Dr. Damsgaard’s system works and we are committed to racing clean" (Johan Bruyneel) and then concludes with "Gusev’s release is effective immediately and he is 'free to seek employment with another team or company'."(team spokesman Philippe Maertens).

    In other words, you're sacked for doping but other teams can sign you. Why no ban, why no UCI investigation?

    But thats not evidence of the programme being a cover up is it ? The exact opposite in fact . I take it then that you want a rider sacked for doping or banned for doping even if it isnt proved he has done so ?

    MG
    Gasping - but somehow still alive !
  • KléberKléber Posts: 6,842
    No it says the team sacks a rider for doping but is happy for him to go to other teams. Imagine if your local police force caught a copper breaking the law and said "we've sacked PC Plod but Mr Plod is free to join any other force" and meanwhile the Home Office sat back twiddling its thumbs.
  • DaveyL wrote:
    micron wrote:
    These programmes aren't there to catch but to conceal - they're doping control programmes, not anti-doping programmes
    Perhaps you'd care to enlighten us as to how these things are concealed then? I'm not clever enough to work it out on my own.
    Micron is right, but (just as with the way doping programs themselves are managed within a team) all those involved have a vested interest in ensuring that everything is kept out of the public arena. Despite this insights into what is really happening behind the scenes still leak out occasionally. For example:

    Spanish doctor Marcos Maynar Mariño sent an email offering comprehensive urinalysis and steroid profiling at 50 euros per athlete to as many as ten professional cycling teams including Gerolsteiner, Milram, CSC and Columbia . Maynar offered to provide a complete analysis consistent with the same control methods used by the International Cycling Union (UCI). The services would be conducted by the Laboratory of Analytical Chemistry at the Faculty of Sciences at the Universidad de Extremadura in Cáceres, Spain (”Dos médicos españoles, acusados de dopar,” July 20).

    According to the German television station ARD, Spanish doctor Marcos Maynar offered these services as for internal testing allowing athletes to monitor their doping to ensure that their use of performance enhancing drugs would not be detected by doping controls at the 2008 Tour de France and other pro cycling events.


    http://www.steroidreport.com/2008/07/21 ... g-scandal/

    That doctors should be implicated in 'managing' doping programs should come as no surprise to anyone given that it is doctors like Ferrari and Fuentes who run these programs in the first place! A number of doctors have also written some widely quoted academic articles in which they argue that doping in sport should be allowed.
  • moray_gubmoray_gub Posts: 3,328
    aurelio wrote:
    DaveyL wrote:
    micron wrote:
    These programmes aren't there to catch but to conceal - they're doping control programmes, not anti-doping programmes
    Perhaps you'd care to enlighten us as to how these things are concealed then? I'm not clever enough to work it out on my own.
    Micron is right, but (just as with the way doping programs themselves are managed within a team) all those involved have a vested interest in ensuring that everything is kept out of the public arena. Despite this insights into what is really happening behind the scenes still leak out occasionally. For example:

    Spanish doctor Marcos Maynar Mariño sent an email offering comprehensive urinalysis and steroid profiling at 50 euros per athlete to as many as ten professional cycling teams including Gerolsteiner, Milram, CSC and Columbia . Maynar offered to provide a complete analysis consistent with the same control methods used by the International Cycling Union (UCI). The services would be conducted by the Laboratory of Analytical Chemistry at the Faculty of Sciences at the Universidad de Extremadura in Cáceres, Spain (”Dos médicos españoles, acusados de dopar,” July 20).

    According to the German television station ARD, Spanish doctor Marcos Maynar offered these services as for internal testing allowing athletes to monitor their doping to ensure that their use of performance enhancing drugs would not be detected by doping controls at the 2008 Tour de France and other pro cycling events.


    http://www.steroidreport.com/2008/07/21 ... g-scandal/

    That doctors should be implicated in 'managing' doping programs should come as no surprise to anyone given that it is doctors like Ferrari and Fuentes who run these programs in the first place! A number of doctors have also written some widely quoted academic articles in which they argue that doping in sport should be allowed.

    All good and well but thats still is not evidence (not tittle tattle) that the programmes are for concealment as was stated by micron.

    MG
    Gasping - but somehow still alive !
  • DaveyLDaveyL Posts: 5,167
    Micron is right, but doesn't need to provide any evidence?

    In the story aurelio has posted, the only thing Marino has in common with Damsgaard is that they are both doctors.

    It's easy to say that Damsgaard's programme is just a smokescreen, or that the teams can beat it. Fine. But I;m not going to believe that til someone tells me *how*. Is he lying when he says the UCI see the results before he does? How can teams/riders beat this system? I'm genuinely interested to know.

    While we're at it, can someone identify a person or body who would actually benefit from a rider testing positive?
    Le Blaireau (1)
  • Aren't these internally funded programmes, open to abuse from within?
    Gusev is a case in point. No abnormal values released to the media.
    The UCI unable to sanction.
    Gusev in an almost impossible position to make a rebuttal.

    The beauty of the internal programme being riders locked into a state of hyper-Omerta?
    DaveyL wrote:
    While we're at it, can someone identify a person or body who would actually benefit from a rider testing positive?

    What, you mean like Lance with Bertie the Abnormal? :P

    Surely, we are all speculating, here. Lance better than Kelly in the monuments?
    Just because we says things, doesn't make it so. We never have actual proof of anything! :wink:
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • KléberKléber Posts: 6,842
    Moray, you seem remarkably trusting of these teams. I look around and see people in charge who were clients of Fuentes and Ferrari, who have seen many of their riders get caught. So when I see tales of buying in private anti-doping controls, I get suspicious.

    Imagine if a wealthy Russian oligarch's wife suddenly died in London and the oligarch is about to be arrested by the Met Police but instead says "I am today paying private detectives to investigate the matter, call off the police, trust me", do you think people would buy that?

    The UCI is witnessing all these teams going to great lengths and costs to establish private testing schemes because the public, teams and media know the UCI isn't capable of running these tests. The bio passport is a start but surely these private schemes are screaming for the UCI to go a lot further.

    The ultimate powers of surveillance and sanction should be with the UCI, we need a strong governing body, not one that's forced to scramble around and pick up the pieces.
  • DaveyLDaveyL Posts: 5,167
    Aren't these internally funded programmes, open to abuse from within?
    Gusev is a case in point. No abnormal values released to the media.
    The UCI unable to sanction.
    Gusev in an almost impossible position to make a rebuttal.

    The beauty of the internal programme being riders locked into a state of hyper-Omerta?
    DaveyL wrote:
    While we're at it, can someone identify a person or body who would actually benefit from a rider testing positive?

    What, you mean like Lance with Bertie the Abnormal? :P

    Surely, we are all speculating, here. Lance better than Kelly in the monuments?
    Just because we says things, doesn't make it so. We never have actual proof of anything! :wink:

    Well, I guess any rider would benefit from a rival testing positive. Can't think of any other situation though.

    Lance better than Kelly in the monuments - the words of David Walsh, not mine, and in reply to some equally pointless speculation about other riders. See, we can all do it if we want.
    Le Blaireau (1)
  • DaveyL wrote:
    How can teams/riders beat this system? I'm genuinely interested to know.
    Rather than getting bogged down in the details of how doping tests can be beaten, just consider the way riders and other involved in so many teams have been proven to be experts in 'beating' the 'external' systems set up by those whose job it is to catch dopers and who have no vested interests in preserving the 'clean' image of a team.

    Given this why should it be any more difficult to 'beat' an internal testing system than an external one? (Assuming of course that the system was actually trying to expose dopers in the first place, rather than being designed to ensure that the rider's parameters remained within the limits set by the doping-control authorities).
    DaveyL wrote:
    While we're at it, can someone identify a person or body who would actually benefit from a rider testing positive?

    Other than those clean riders who are robbed of the results they deserve by doped riders, few if any people would directly benefit from exposing a doped rider, especially if they were employed by the team involved. And therein lies the problem with all ‘internal’ doping control/doping management programs!
  • DaveyLDaveyL Posts: 5,167
    Translation - "rather than bother about silly details like explaining how someone might actually beat Damsgaard's programme, I'll just instead state that riders used to beat the old testing system".

    Excellent, well that's me convinced.

    My other (implied) question still stands. Which organisation could run an independent anti-doping programme and not stand to benefit by riders not testing positive?
    Le Blaireau (1)
  • DaveyLDaveyL Posts: 5,167
    Please aurelio - I'm more than happy to get bogged down. PM me with the boring details if you like. How to beat Damsgaard's system?
    Le Blaireau (1)
  • colintcolint Posts: 1,707
    Kléber wrote:
    Moray Gub wrote:
    Im intrigued by microns claim as well i wonder if he has any PROPER evidence to substantiate it ?MG
    OK, here's a case to review: http://www.bikeradar.com/news/article/t ... usev-17730

    We have a rider who posts "abnormal values", not abnormal so he gets asked a few questions, these are so abnormal he gets fired.

    Note the text of the article which says "This proves that Dr. Damsgaard’s system works and we are committed to racing clean" (Johan Bruyneel) and then concludes with "Gusev’s release is effective immediately and he is 'free to seek employment with another team or company'."(team spokesman Philippe Maertens).

    In other words, you're sacked for doping but other teams can sign you. Why no ban, why no UCI investigation?

    Is it not possible that the team could tell he was doping, but didn't have enough evidence to actually call it that ? Doesn't explain why the UCI didn't pursue it further, but maybe it's harsh to criticise the team who may have been doing the right thing ?
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  • aurelio_-_bannedaurelio_-_banned Posts: 1,317
    edited January 2009
    DaveyL wrote:
    Please aurelio - I'm more than happy to get bogged down. PM me with the boring details if you like. How to beat Damsgaard's system?
    And I'd be more than happy to help! Just post the details of how exactly he runs his program, how he obtains his samples, the testing frequency, how arrangements are made for him to visit the team and so on. I feel it won't be too difficult a job to point out any shortcomings. :wink:

    If you are looking for more general details of how a rider can ensure that they don't test positive whilst doping, do a search on here. I am sure I have discussed this point several times before. Also, do a search to read about the work of Professor Jean-Pierre de Mondenard.

    Anyhow, out of interest, just why do you think it would be harder to ‘beat’ the testing of someone like Damsgaard than the massed ranks of bodies such as WADA, the UCI, the IOC, national sporting federations and so on?
  • moray_gubmoray_gub Posts: 3,328
    Kléber wrote:
    Moray, you seem remarkably trusting of these teams. I look around and see people in charge who were clients of Fuentes and Ferrari, who have seen many of their riders get caught. So when I see tales of buying in private anti-doping controls, I get suspicious.

    Imagine if a wealthy Russian oligarch's wife suddenly died in London and the oligarch is about to be arrested by the Met Police but instead says "I am today paying private detectives to investigate the matter, call off the police, trust me", do you think people would buy that?

    The UCI is witnessing all these teams going to great lengths and costs to establish private testing schemes because the public, teams and media know the UCI isn't capable of running these tests. The bio passport is a start but surely these private schemes are screaming for the UCI to go a lot further.

    The ultimate powers of surveillance and sanction should be with the UCI, we need a strong governing body, not one that's forced to scramble around and pick up the pieces.

    I am not remarkably trusting of these teams but i dont think its does anybody any good just to come out and say the programmes are drug concealment programmes without any proper evidence of any sort. I sometimes wonder if youd prefer these teams not to have programmes in place, as another poster said damned if they do damned if they dont. They cant win really if witness the negativity surrounding so many posters in forum such as this. I often wonder how people with so much negativity and suspicion can enjoy the sport of professional cycling( copyright Paul sherwen) . Still it takes all sort i suppose.

    MG
    Gasping - but somehow still alive !
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