May 9 2007
Bill Clinton was the reference of choice yesterday, but make no mistake about it, Ivan Basso will not gain the will of the people anytime soon. Even Jan Ullrich’s lawyer is under-awed by the Basso admission. So imagine how little people must care about Michele Scarponi’s confession. He didn’t even get first billing on today’s news! Though his report has been sealed, it’s rumored he’s made up for his late confession by naming names, and detailing to authorities exactly how the Puerto dope network was run.
Sure, there was racing, the second of six stages at the Four Days, to be precise. But who cares? It’s friggin’ Giro time! Word is Honchar’s out due to sickness, Honchar’s out, and Hamilton et al. are stull up in the air, but c’mon, a little doping intrigue is nothing new at the Giro. Cyclingnews thinks this Giro will be one of the most open and fairly contested in years – of course, that’s what they said about last year’s Tour, too.
Speaking of the Landis case, there’s been yet another impropriety by the prosecution; it’s like they’re determined to get Landis sprung on a technicality. Oscar Pereiro, who hasn’t had the best season thus far, is probably pulling his hair out; kind of makes me wonder why Simoni, the first non-Puerto rider at last year’s Giro, has kept his notoriously loud mouth shut on last year’s race.
But who ever said cycling was clean? There’s subterfuge everywhere you look: race organizers complaining about the presumption of innocence; respected “tech experts” still hocking products weeks after a Vegas junket; heck, full-length testimonials parading as news right alongside ads for the very component they endorse – I got your “Real World Proof” right here! Ah well, there’s still one last bastion of bike racing purity – at least, I hope there is.