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BMC's Frei Positive for EPO

blazing_saddlesblazing_saddles Posts: 17,913
edited May 2010 in Pro race
Had to me to break the news. Where's Iain when you need him?
http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/frei-fi ... e-positive

BMC Racing Team: Statement Regarding Thomas Frei
President Jim Ochowicz:

It has come to our attention that Thomas Frei has been informed that he
was tested A-positive regarding the use of EPO. As a consequence, the BMC Racing Team and its members have made the decision to withhold Thomas Frei from competition, in accordance with the BMC Racing Team's own policy. This should not be seen as pre-determination of guilt. The rider will now have to personally address the accusation.


Will there be any implications, I wonder. Have BMC just become Phonak reborn?
"Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
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  • pat1cppat1cp Posts: 766
    Sorry, too late

    http://www.bikeradar.com/forums/viewtop ... t=12696425

    and Iain remarked 29 mins before your thread time. :wink:
  • iainf72iainf72 Posts: 15,784

    Will there be any implications, I wonder. Have BMC just become Phonak reborn?

    6/10 Blaze

    You didn't mention he rode for Astana and Bruyneel :wink:
    Fckin' Quintana … that creep can roll, man.
  • blazing_saddlesblazing_saddles Posts: 17,913
    Yeah, I now, but I didn't want to wake Moray. :wink:

    Anyhow, I watched him in Trentino's MTF, yesterday and thought: "Boy, this guy is going pretty good. Cadel could have some mountain support for the Giro after all."

    He was the first rider in behind the Basso, Vino, Cobra sprint group.

    Oh well........
    (sorry about the second thread, I missed it. Let this one die etc)
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • iainf72iainf72 Posts: 15,784
    Fckin' Quintana … that creep can roll, man.
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,542
    iainf72 wrote:

    Will there be any implications, I wonder. Have BMC just become Phonak reborn?

    6/10 Blaze

    You didn't mention he rode for Astana and Bruyneel :wink:

    Hmmmmmmmm. A little guilt by association, huh??? You guys are getting pretty radical
    in your thinking. Therefore, if I am an apple in a barrel and there is a rotten apple in that barrel, I am also rotten? This sounds like a post for Biking Bernie to comment on. BB are you there? :wink::wink:
  • bipedalbipedal Posts: 466
    Frei has stated that he started doping in 2008 while riding for Astana under Bruyneel

    http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/frei-co ... sed-by-bmc
  • incog24incog24 Posts: 549
    edited April 2010
    So all you have to do to avoid getting caught is drink a litre of water??
    Racing for Fluid Fin Race Team in 2012 - www.fluidfin.co.uk
  • KléberKléber Posts: 6,842
    Indeed:
    Frei said that he had been doping since the summer of 2008, and that his inner circle was aware of it. “I am not a hard-core liar, I had to talk about it.” Frei rode for Astana in 2007 and 2008, before joining BMC in 2009.

    He said that his positive test on March 21 happened almost by chance, revealing details of how athletes try to avoid being caught. The previous day he had given himself a micro-dosage of EPO for the first time in three months. Frei claimed that if he had drank enough water after the injection, the urine test would not have shown the EPO. However, he did not drink the required litre of water even when the controller arrived at six o'clock the next morning.
    One big swig of water and you are in the clear. It makes you wonder just how many other riders are using this.
  • shinyhelmutshinyhelmut Posts: 1,349
    incog24 wrote:
    So all you have to do to avoid getting caught is drink a litre of water??

    Or continue riding for bruyneel :wink:

    (allegedly)
  • andypandyp Posts: 8,596
    What are the odds on Bruyneel ignoring this? Low I'd wager.
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 56,009 Lives Here
    Anyone reminded of Landis' Tour comeback when they hear "all you need to do is drink a lot of water" ??
  • greeny12greeny12 Posts: 759
    Jesus, talk about papa's little helper!

    And meanwhile numerous endurance athletes cast self-satisfied glances across to the world of cycling, safe in the knowledge that many of them don't even have to face out of competition testing...
    My cycle racing blog: http://cyclingapprentice.wordpress.com/

    If you live in or near Sussex, check this out:
    http://ontherivet.ning.com/
  • KléberKléber Posts: 6,842
    Anyone reminded of Landis' Tour comeback when they hear "all you need to do is drink a lot of water" ??
    Not really, if you take EPO it doesn't not boost the blood overnight. Perhaps he was trying to flush something else out but EPO would not have helped for the final few days.
  • DaveyLDaveyL Posts: 5,167
    Anyone reminded of Landis' Tour comeback when they hear "all you need to do is drink a lot of water" ??

    Drinking water to stay hydrated and keep cool in really hot conditions. Whatever will these cheats think of next.

    If a litre is all you need I suspect every rider drinks a weeeeee bit more than that every stage.
    Le Blaireau (1)
  • paulcuthbertpaulcuthbert Posts: 1,016
    DaveyL wrote:
    Anyone reminded of Landis' Tour comeback when they hear "all you need to do is drink a lot of water" ??

    Drinking water to stay hydrated and keep cool in really hot conditions. Whatever will these cheats think of next.

    If a litre is all you need I suspect every rider drinks a weeeeee bit more than that every stage.

    In that case my Dad MUST be clean- he never takes a water bottle out on a ride with him...
  • iainf72iainf72 Posts: 15,784
    I think the message from Thomas is it's not that hard to not return a positive for EPO.

    Anyway, he's being a man about it so that's a good thing.
    Fckin' Quintana … that creep can roll, man.
  • KléberKléber Posts: 6,842
    It's good but he's been caught in a test, there's no way out. You can pretend EPO vials were for someone else, just as possession of a vat of growth hormone is not a WADA/UCI offence either.

    What amazes me is the way a slurp of water gets you through the test. Talk of the holes in the net getting smaller is premature, you can walk through the net it seems.
  • DaveyLDaveyL Posts: 5,167
    I think we need to realise the context of this though. It has always been a difficult thing to test for, with a small detection window and often the results are not clear. If you're taking small doses, it's also going to be harder to detect, but on the other hand you will get less benefit than from a larger dose.

    My questions would be, what sort of performance gains are you getting from these small doses, and where are we on the risk/reward scale for them?

    I also feel that there must be other ways of looking for r-epo, which will be much more sensitive, but they are probably waaaay more expensive.
    Le Blaireau (1)
  • KléberKléber Posts: 6,842
    It keeps up the levels and this technique is very handy in a stage race or during hard training. You can take these small doses and permanently raise your blood count, to the point where year-round use can fool the bio passport.

    Once again a rider is only caught because they slipped up.
  • paulcuthbertpaulcuthbert Posts: 1,016
    DaveyL wrote:
    My questions would be, what sort of performance gains are you getting from these small doses, and where are we on the risk/reward scale for them?

    I'm a bit confused. Just to clear this up in my mind; are you suggesting that if the performance benefits of micro-dosing aren't significant in return, it makes it more acceptable to dope?
  • DaveyLDaveyL Posts: 5,167
    I'm not suggesting anything. I'm asking - how many points is the athlete raising his/her hematocrit by when micro-dosing, and how much perforamnce gain are they getting from this? Clearly you would get a massive benefit from a dose which would take your Hct into the high 50s, but this would also be much easier to detect.

    It might be a bit simplistic, but in general, I presume that as the dose is lowered, the performance gains drop, as does the risk of getting caught. So at what point does it stop becoming worth it?

    Just to be clear though - It's all still cheating.
    Le Blaireau (1)
  • RichN95.RichN95. Posts: 25,318
    edited April 2010
    Kléber wrote:
    What amazes me is the way a slurp of water gets you through the test. Talk of the holes in the net getting smaller is premature, you can walk through the net it seems.

    But does it get you through the test? Just because Frei's drug dealer has told him that if he has a big drink he'll be fine, it doesn't make it so. The riders who say how easy it is not to be caught are the ones who have just been caught. They probably haven't made a mistake, they probably just been lied to by someone who wants to sell them drugs.
    Twitter: @RichN95
  • paulcuthbertpaulcuthbert Posts: 1,016
    Kléber wrote:
    Indeed:
    Frei claimed that if he had drank enough water after the injection, the urine test would not have shown the EPO. However, he did not drink the required litre of water even when the controller arrived at six o'clock the next morning.

    One big swig of water and you are in the clear. It makes you wonder just how many other riders are using this.

    Yeah, but he got caught - so maybe the water thing doesn't work so good?
  • redddraggonredddraggon Posts: 10,862
    Kléber wrote:
    Indeed:
    Frei claimed that if he had drank enough water after the injection, the urine test would not have shown the EPO. However, he did not drink the required litre of water even when the controller arrived at six o'clock the next morning.

    One big swig of water and you are in the clear. It makes you wonder just how many other riders are using this.

    Yeah, but he got caught - so maybe the water thing doesn't work so good?

    He reckons he got caught because he forgot to drink the litre of water
    I like bikes...

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  • stagehopperstagehopper Posts: 1,593
    Kléber wrote:
    It's good but he's been caught in a test, there's no way out. You can pretend EPO vials were for someone else, just as possession of a vat of growth hormone is not a WADA/UCI offence either.

    What amazes me is the way a slurp of water gets you through the test. Talk of the holes in the net getting smaller is premature, you can walk through the net it seems.

    Do you really believe that though Kleber? The daily recommended intake of water for a male between the ages of 18-50 is 3.7 litres. Physical exercise can increase that substantially. It's safe to assume that Frei did the odd bit of cycling and thus consumed large volumes of water/other liquids. At least that's what I assume the bidons are for.

    Are we really to believe that forgetting to drink two medium-sized glasses of water in the evening (which you'd drink anyway) is enough to get you through EPO tests?

    Utter rubbish from Frei.
  • iainf72iainf72 Posts: 15,784

    Utter rubbish from Frei.

    I think he's probably basing it on his experience. Whoever taught him his protocol told him to drink water, he usually did, no positive. Didn't drink extra water, returns a positive.

    What it probably means is the test just doesn't work that well.
    Fckin' Quintana … that creep can roll, man.
  • pitchshifterpitchshifter Posts: 1,476
    Does anyone else wish he didnt reveal the gory details. For me this just makes me question the whole peleton if its this easy to avoid getting caught..

    If he has been micro doping for 2 years then this water business must hold some truth or they are not testing riders enough.

    This war on doping can be compared to the iraq war, they are never going to win it..

    Perhaps they will ban h20...
  • TusherTusher Posts: 2,762
    What exactly are the benefits of micro-dosing as compared to, well, macro-dosing? I've never fully understood. I mean, I know there is less chance of being caught, water or no water, but are they taking too little to be of huge significance in their performance?

    I know that information is out there in the clinic forums, but I lose the will to live reading those.
  • iainf72iainf72 Posts: 15,784
    Tusher wrote:
    What exactly are the benefits of micro-dosing as compared to, well, macro-dosing?

    Sort of as DaveyL explained - You'd not get huge variations in HCT etc, but it would get your body producing more red blood cells but in a constant manner. You'd be able to train harder and the effects would be similar to taking EPO in bigger doses, but without the peaks and troughs.

    The advantages - Well, Dr Ferrari allegedly pioneered the technique shortly after the urine test for EPO emerged. This is why in 2006 / 2007 Anti-doping agencies were saying a large percentage of top level cyclists showed EPO in their urine but not enough to trigger a positive.

    So in short, you get more red blood cells, you get them constantly and there is minimal chance of testing positive.
    Fckin' Quintana … that creep can roll, man.
  • Dave_1Dave_1 Posts: 9,512
    Frei has evaded for 2 years so it works, not as if he got caught first time he did it...2 years of racing on epo and it must be working very well for many riders judging by this case. They don't do blood tests in the morning? Only urine?
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