FanDuel - WFBC

October 10, 2007

Landis appeals: his doping case to the Court of Arbitration of Sport

posted by apoch to other at 04:38 PM - 30 comments

A much better article from VeloNews. via [TBV]

posted by apoch at 04:47 PM on October 10

""Knowing that the accusations against me are simply wrong, and having risked all my energy and resources - including those of my family, friends and supporters - to show clearly that I won the 2006 Tour de France fair and square, I will continue to fight for what I know is right," said Landis. " Yup. Just like OJ is still looking for the real killer. Give it up Floyd.

posted by jhkaplan at 05:01 PM on October 10

Comments like yours make me want to stab myself in the eye. I mean, really, what the fuck is your point? Comparing accused doping to accused murder? Comparing mounting a vigorous legal defense with little to gain to "looking" for the real murders on a golf course? OJ fought his case in court to prevent going to jail and the civil case to prevent losing millions upon millions of dollars. Landis is fighting to keep a title and to reduce a two year ban that is already a third over. He has spent over a million dollars so far fighting this case. In the end even if he wins, there will always be a stain on his reputation. I hardly see how the two are the same. Is it too much to ask for a discussion of the facts? Is it? Some people (Dick Pound) are too blinded by their rage against potential dopers to even give due process a fair shake. Are you one of them? I don't give a shit if you think he's guilty. At least base your beliefs on facts and testimony. There are a complexity of issues and you do no one justice by not taking the time to understand them.

posted by apoch at 05:27 PM on October 10

Apoch- if you don't agree with everyones point of view that is fine. But to attack jhkaplan because he does not agree with you is pitiful. Just like Landis and his attempt to "clear" his name and title. If you post a link expect that some people will not agree with you. He was not comparing the two as the same offense, just trying to point out that he believes Landis is just as guilty in his situation as OJ was in his. (Forgive me and correct me if I am wrong jhk).

posted by urall cloolis at 06:41 PM on October 10

I didn't attack jhkaplan because he does not agree with me, I attacked his comparison because I believe it to not only be counterproductive but to also have no factual basis to back it up. Regardless, you are correct about jhkaplan not deserving the antagonistic response. I apologize.

posted by apoch at 07:30 PM on October 10

apoch didn't say people couldn't disagree with him. And let's face it, jhk's comment is basically content-free. But we won't survive around here very long if we object to every instance of that particular sin. I have not had time to look over the AAA decision in detail. However, I have gone carefully over a number of CAS decisions in the past and I will say that the panels usually give athletes a very fair and detailed hearing, and most importantly they have a strong tradition of sticking by the letter of the law. I don't always agree with the decisions, but they are always rational and carefully argued.

posted by Amateur at 07:36 PM on October 10

I think he has less than 2% chance of overturning his conviction, regardless of how strong his case or how favorable the panel he gets at CAS. But here's a question I haven't seen on any of the many cycling sites I view. What happens if he does win and overturns the doping charge? Does Oscar Pereiro then have to give the yellow jersey back to Landis? That would be really bizarre. Of course, it will never happen.

posted by BikeNut at 08:13 PM on October 10

Landis, 31, of Murrieta, Calif., had questioned the cost of a CAS appeal after spending, by his estimate, $2 million on his appeal of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency's charge he had committed a doping violation Where the hell did Floyd Landis come up with 2 million bucks to make his defense? MIchael Vick's lawyer would do it for half of that, nevermind, seems that didn't go so well so far (either). But here's a question I haven't seen on any of the many cycling sites I view. What happens if he does win and overturns the doping charge? Does Oscar Pereiro then have to give the yellow jersey back to Landis? Good point. Here is another question: If Landis loses will everyone shut the hell up about how he was screwed over? Will any of his supporters admit he is a cheater or will they continue to make excuses for their fallen hero? (as I have heard in McGwire, Bonds, Jones, Pacman, OJ, and Vick threads)

posted by urall cloolis at 09:25 PM on October 10

I fed up with this blog. I live in St. Louis and I believe MM took steriods and I'am criticised for my opinions. Dammit, I want to see conclusive proof for every opinion on this blog. I insulted no one on this blog, however some persons believe if they insult and scream enough their opinion will drown out me or anybody with same thoughts. Some persons want answers for my opinions. Well, that 40 lb. remark was on a local station and no conclusion was forcoming. It was just a statement for viewers to comprehend and make their own conclusions. That's exactly what I did and ask other bloggers the same question. I liked to ask some questions. Why did Jose Conseco state in his book "juiced" that MM took PED in his presence. What is his motive to say suck a thing? Why did MM refused to answer questions at the house sub committee investigation on steriod use in Major Leagues? Look, if a person is not guilty of a charge, he or she will answer with conviction, certainty and not give some diatribe about looking to the future. Why did 75% of the writers not choose to put MM on ballot for HOF? You want me to answer question due to one statement I made. Well go ahead and answer some of these questions. Go ahead and keep your hero worship and mark my word one of these days the truth will come out and every body who has given me a hard time can kiss my ass. I'am sorry about not posting about Landis but I'am pissed off and fed up by getting ganged up on. Some of the bloggers on this site are like pit bulls and I'll bet 1000 bucks they would not say some of the things on this blog to the person face to face.

posted by brickman at 01:07 AM on October 11

"I fed up with this blog... I'am pissed off and fed up by getting ganged up on." You're familiar, I presume, with the fact that your computer has an off button? I know it's confusing that when you want to stop, the first icon you click says "start", but I'm guessing you've managed it the odd time and that your computer hasn't remained permanently switched on since the day you bought it. If you don't like it here - if you don't like getting called out every time you write complete and utter nonsense (before then backtracking furiously) - then go away. I've seen you say at least twice now that you're posting your last post and won't be back. Do us all a favour and stick to your word. This is a post about Floyd Landis, not Mark McGwire, or indeed you, so unless you have something to say about Landis (something that is other than "You know what Floyd Landis reminds me of? Reminds me of how you all gang up on me."), stop muddying it up. To return to the topic raised by the FPP, from what I've read and seen on TV, there seem to be some doubts as to the safety of the results provided by a questionable sampling procedure. If he achieves nothing else, it might benefit the sport of cycling (and sport in general) if the questions he raises in pursuing this lead to a review of that procedure.

posted by JJ at 04:19 AM on October 11

Why did Jose Conseco state in his book "juiced" that MM took PED in his presence. What is his motive to say suck a thing? To make money. He also narced out others too don't forget. However, this is a LANDIS thread. Stick to him, not Big Mac, two different sports even. Go ahead and keep your hero worship and mark my word one of these days the truth will come out and every body who has given me a hard time can kiss my ass. Wiggle that nose and give us all a target. If you do not want the proverbial smack down around here, then quit doing this exact shit. Just stick to the topic at hand, and don't make assumptions you can't back up. It is also things like this that get you into a lot of problems around here: They probably did, however I never said MM used steriods. Now look at your above post. Don't talk out of both sides of your mouth in here and expect to get away with it.

posted by jojomfd1 at 04:45 AM on October 11

I guess I'm seeing and reading the same things as JJ, because I can't say with certainty that I trust the chain of custody in the Floyd case. I still think it's pretty farfetched that an anti-American prejudice is causing officials to spike urine samples, which has certainly been postulated on this site more than once. I find it much easier to believe that the positive results in the Landis case are the result of shoddy techniques and bad science than conspiracy. That said, my gut reaction is, he's guilty. None of us will probably ever know for sure, though. brickman - people are on your case so often around here because you don't seem to know what you're talking about. You make statements which you seem to think the rest of us should take as fact just because you said it. That doesn't fly around here. Even a broken watch is correct twice a day, which is twice as often as you are. I agree with the other posters; if you're going to quit, then quit and be done with it. If not, stop the whole "Everybody look at me, I'm going to quit, no really, I'm going to do it!" crap. Go bother the people at Deadspin.com instead.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 05:30 AM on October 11

I fed up with this blog. I live in St. Louis and I believe MM took steriods and I'am criticised for my opinions. Once again you've: 1. Derailed the conversation with one of your pet topics. Mark McGwire's name doesn't appear in the article, and as far as I know McGwire doesn't compete in cycling. 2. You've made the thread about yourself. Why you hate sportsfilter. Why you're attacked. Neither one has anything to do with the thread. Please keep the thread on topic. This is getting really old.

posted by justgary at 07:09 AM on October 11

Here is another question: If Landis loses will everyone shut the hell up about how he was screwed over? No. Will any of his supporters admit he is a cheater or will they continue to make excuses for their fallen hero? Any? Well, depending on whether you flex the definition of "admit" to mean "change their mind to believe", the answer is probably yes. Will I be one of them? No, sorry, I'll continue to be an agnostic. And, in the same vein, I will continue not to be a "Landis supporter" as such, as a supporter of Landis (and every athlete who is subjected to PED regulations) getting the benefit of a meaningful and fact-based due process, which I believe has not happened. You may not see the distinction, but then, a lot of people don't really see the distinction between an agnostic and an atheist.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 07:34 AM on October 11

In related news, Roberto Heras is planning a comeback. His suspension ends Oct 27. One thing of interest - he was suspended for 2 years even though his "B" sample came back negative. That didn't stop WADA - they just ran a second analysis of the "B" sample to get the answer they wanted. This is my big issue with whole process - whether its cycling or any other sport. The deck is totally stacked against the athlete and there is no independent oversight of the labs running these analyses. Even when athlete produces evidence of botched tests, the suspension process rolls forward. Result is once an athlete is accused, they're finished. And in interest of full disclosure, I am not a Landis supporter. I don't know if he cheated and could give a flip. I am a supporter of a fair process based on solid science.

posted by BikeNut at 08:18 AM on October 11

I fed up with this blog. See ya!

posted by tommytrump at 08:53 AM on October 11

Me too. I reckon that's where this is going. I don't think Floyd has a hope in hell of clearing his name now - not because of the evidence, because of the system - so now it's all about that system and the process of handling samples. It's no longer really about whether he did or didn't dope, but whether his samples were or weren't handled fairly. At the moment, Floyd is just one more in a long line of doping athletes. For now, his name will go down in history as the guy who had the Tour taken away from him because he doped. But if he keeps on pushing - and for the life of me, I can't see where he'll get the money to do so, but if he does - perhaps his legacy might be different. He might become that guy Landis who forced the anti-doping people to change how they operated and made everything fairer for the athletes and less of a witch-hunt. I'm sure that as consolation prizes go though, that's a pretty sucky one if he really is innocent.

posted by JJ at 09:40 AM on October 11

Does anyone even care anymore?

posted by Brahdakine at 11:46 AM on October 11

What a surprise. Just go away already Floyd.

posted by sic at 12:31 PM on October 11

I'm curious. Aside from getting his reputation and title back, what does Landis have to gain by pursuing this? Would he have spent this much moola on defense if he was guilty? Can he recoup his losses from endorsements if he wins? I have to admit to not knowing much about this sport except for the scandals. I only watch the Tour de france for the accidents.

posted by irunfromclones at 01:28 PM on October 11

Would he have spent this much moola on defense if he was guilty? OJ spent a ton of money on his defense. Guilty people do spend money to defend themselves.

posted by urall cloolis at 01:49 PM on October 11

Brahdakine: Does anyone even care anymore? I take it from that that you somehow managed to miss all the doping discussion threads -- entirely possible, as you've only been here a week -- went into the comment area of this thread, somehow managed to not notice the thirty or so comments ahead of yours, and thus remain confused as to whether anyone still cares about the outcome of the Landis case. The answer to your question is yes. Sharpen your powers of observation just a trifle, and these subtleties will have a harder time eluding you in the future. irunfromclones: I'm curious. Aside from getting his reputation and title back, what does Landis have to gain by pursuing this? There is the possibility that he is a principled person fighting a form of injustice that harms others as well as himself.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 02:57 PM on October 11

Landis knows he doesn't have a chance. He's just trying to keep his name out there for potential book deals etc.

posted by SportsNarrative at 07:31 PM on October 11

The chain of custody and testing procedures are always being questioned in cases, look up: Simpson, Orenthal James. It does not make someone innocent. Maybe it helps further testing, hopefully. There are loopholes everywhere in life and Landis is just exhausting all his efforts to find one that may stick with someone, somewhere that matters. It is called an aggressive defense.

posted by urall cloolis at 09:08 PM on October 11

Heh. During the Landis trial (or inquest or hearing or whatever it's called), the local sports station did a parody where they talked to a guy who claimed to be from the Landis fan club. He said they had a chant they wanted to yell outside the court room if they could get bus fare to attend: "Landis! Landis! He ain't dopin'! Greg Lemond, what pipe you smokin'?!" They also had a bumper sticker: "Honk if you support Landis. Or if you're horny."

posted by drumdance at 12:45 AM on October 12

There is the possibility that he is a principled person fighting a form of injustice that harms others as well as himself. Absolutely. There is also the possibility that there are vast amounts of money riding on a overturning. By his own estimate he'd have spent $2 million. Well, that's certainly a number... that he can say without ever having to support it. Has it really come to Landis now being a victim in the great Dick Pound witch hunt? That's now a popular position to have? Seems on one hand we have Landis, who is fighting and fighting these seemingly repeated confirmations of his cheating. On the other we have Marion Jones - who ferociously denied allegations for years, only to be forced into a comupance, and we have BALCO, who were obvioulsy way ahead of the testing game. We also have various national sports governing bodies who's sole job appears to be protecting national sports figures who cheat (USATF, I'm looking at you). I'm sorry - but I can't get behind Landis, or any of these athletes. The whole sport is completely questionable. Teams are firing riders faster than testers are catching them. Why? Because there doesn't seem to be much of a debate internally as to who's doped up and who isn't. It's patentedly ridiculous. This is the only subject that's discussed in non-cycling circles. I find it all completely absurd. The Tour is an exercise in watching the mega-mice run their laps before the lab gets them. You might as well politely applaud the guy who finishes first and then start cheering when his test results are successful. There isn't a shred of credibility on any side. But I'll be damned if I'll see Landis as some poor victim of bureaucracy in the whole thing.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 08:15 AM on October 12

Absolutely. There is also the possibility that there are vast amounts of money riding on a overturning. By his own estimate he'd have spent $2 million. Well, that's certainly a number... that he can say without ever having to support it. So, if the case were overturned, he'd automatically get all that money back? From whom? Based on what? Has it really come to Landis now being a victim in the great Dick Pound witch hunt? That's now a popular position to have? Popular position? Have we been reading the same threads? Seems on one hand we have Landis, who is fighting and fighting these seemingly repeated confirmations of his cheating. You'll accuse me of arguing semantics, but I don't see a "seemingly repeated confirmation of his cheating" in the most recent finding. I see a decision not to overturn, which isn't the same thing. On the other we have Marion Jones - who ferociously denied allegations for years, only to be forced into a comupance, and we have BALCO, who were obvioulsy way ahead of the testing game. We also have various national sports governing bodies who's sole job appears to be protecting national sports figures who cheat (USATF, I'm looking at you). Well, yeah, but that's a bit like saying, "...and we have these janjaweed in Darfur who are shooting up civilians, and we have these Chechen rebels taking schoolkids hostage, and we also have these whackjobs called the Lord's Army in Uganda sniping people on rural roads..." The common elements are PDAs and sports, but are they really connected, apart from using some of the same technology? A lot of people would like the whole problem to just go away, and I am one of them -- but I also firmly believe that that will never happen as long as we regard it as one problem. I'll name just two major areas of differences, to give you an idea of what I'm talking about. One is the fact that a banned substance may have a certain effect on one type of athlete -- an endurance athlete, for instance -- and may not yield the same result on an athlete whose sport is more anaerobic. Bode Miller drew a lot of suspicion for comments he made in which he pointed out that using a certain banned substance would not help a ski racer the way it would help an endurance athlete, but OTOH a smaller dose (below the levels calculated as harmful) might theoretically help to prevent injury in sports like ski racing -- and that no one would ever know because it was a banned substance, banned because it was "harmful to athletes". Another area of difference is in the legal status of athletes in different sports, leagues, organizations, etc. A MLB player is an employee of an organization, protected in various ways under the applicable employment laws. A member of the US fencing team is an employee of nobody except perhaps Home Depot, and has virtually no rights regarding the demands that the team may place upon them. Different problems...different solutions. Solving it will take a lot of patience, and for a lot of people, it'll always be so much more fun to smackdown the "cheaters" than to solve the problem.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 08:43 AM on October 12

The single greatest problem with the current fight against doping in sport is that once accused, an athlete is assumed guilty until proven innocent not only by the sport's governing body but by the court of public opinion. Test results are leaked and even if the B sample comes back negative the damage has already been done to the athlete's as well as the sport's reputation. In any fair system of justice the defendant is assumed innocent until proven guilty. The burden of proof is rightly placed upon the prosecution to prove that the defendant committed the offense. Why is this the case? Because it is impossible to prove a negative except in the most specific cases. Even in the absence of positive tests it is impossible for any athlete to prove that they never doped. In a situation where they are guilty until proven innocent, there is no way for an athlete to ever clear their name, regardless of test results. Even taping every second of every day of their lives since birth would not be conclusive proof of not doping. There could always be doubt about additives to food or drink that weren't prepared on camera. The only defense an accused athlete has is to disprove the prosecutions case. Some will call this looking for a loophole, or skating by on a technicality, but it is the only defense an athlete has. They can't have an alibi, they are never accused of being at a specific place or time. They can't prove they didn't dope. The charge against them is that they failed a drug test and the only defense against that is to attack the legitimacy of the drug test. There are two ways to do this: Attack the Chain of Custody and Attack The Testing Procedure. Attacking the Chain of Custody (CoC) shouldn't be an option the athlete ever has the opportunity to take. The CoC starts when the specimen is collected. After collection the specimen is sealed and the collector and collectee sign off on a form stating date and time of collection and that the specimen is in the collectors possession. Every time the specimen changes hands the next person signs date and time that they received it from the person before hand. When the specimen gets to the lab it can be signed into storage, but it is signed out of storage when being used and signed back into when done. It is even signed for when the specimen is disposed off. This simple procedure provides proof that the specimen was always accounted for. Breaking the COC is either a mistake or a deliberate attempt to tamper with the specimen, either way, the vaildity of the sample is in question. The athlete can also try and prove that the test was not run properly. They can try and prove the machine wasn't calibrated properly, the testing procedure wasn't followed, problems with the testing procedure, or human error in running the test. Pretend the athlete has successfully shown that the test is invalid for any of the above reasons. In a climate of guilty until proven innocent they are still guilty. All the athlete has proven is that the authorities didn't catch him properly. He has still failed to prove his innocence. The athlete has only succeeded on finding a technicality. The only way the fight against doping against sport can be fair is if the athlete is innocent until proven guilty. Otherwise the burden of proof on the accused athlete is impossible to meet. The current system is neither fair nor just, and will remain so until the paradigm shifts to innocent until proven guilty. If you want to accept the decision of the arbitration panel 2-1 against Landis, fine, that is your right. I read the testimony, examined the evidence to the best of my ability. I've drawn my own conclusions and they are that the arbitration panel came to the wrong conclusion because the lab did such a poor job testing the specimen that we can never know if Landis doped or not. In a system of innocent until proven guilty, he must be assumed to be innocent. In a system of guilty until proven innocent, the lab results are irrelevant, he can never prove his innocence. I have two reasons for supporting Landis' decision to appeal: I hope and believe he didn't dope, and the system is not fair and needs serious action to correct the issues inherent to it. Even if Landis doped, a greater good is served by clearing him and correcting the injustices in the system than by stripping him of his title. On preview: I'm sorry for the length.

posted by apoch at 09:05 AM on October 12

So, if the case were overturned, he'd automatically get all that money back? From whom? Based on what? No - my point was, like everything else in this case, I don't necessarily accept the figure as gospel. And if successful in his appeal, would he not stand to benefit financially? I don't buy the crusader argument. The common elements are PDAs and sports, but are they really connected, apart from using some of the same technology? Absolutely. All athletes are subject to sceptism based on the past behaviour of other athletes in similar positions. Jones, who denied, denied with such intensity prior to admitting that she was in fact lying the whole time, is relevant to Landis, and I imagine his team is more than aware of it. It just seems that in virtually every scenario of note, the pattern is repeated. Is the testing system perfect? No. But is it ahead of the doping? Hell, no.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 10:25 AM on October 12

All athletes are subject to sceptism based on the past behaviour of other athletes in similar positions. That is what we in the definition business (*disclaimer - Poster is not in the definition business*) like to call a stereotype. While the Jones' situation has public opinion implications, it has no legal implications on the Landis case. Any arbiter that takes the Jones situation into consideration while hearing Landis' appeal doesn't belong in the arbitration business. You, however, are free to be as skeptical and stereotypical as you like. Anyone know of a list of all athletes with positive A samples and the end result? It'd be interesting to see.

posted by apoch at 12:47 PM on October 12

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