Saturday, July 29, 2006

The Future of Cycling...

What an unbelievable bad blow to the world of cycling. Who knows if Floyd Landis is guilty or if he really has a testosterone imbalance. Fair or not, Landis reputation will be tarnished forever. Depending on the results of his upcoming hip replacement surgery, he may never ride again. That may be a good thing for him and the sport in general. Anytime he races in the future, people are always going to ask about his testosterone imbalance.

What needs to happen moving forward:

* If Versus (OLN) was smart, they would be jumping all over this story. They should be offering updates throughout the day on the status of Landis. Hard core cyclists watch Versus every night the Tour de France is held. This is a perfect way to keep viewers. They should interview Amstrong, Lemond, Jan Ullrich and Ivan Basso. They should also speak with doctors, scientists and people who knew Landis. Editor's Note: Yes, I know this is definitely "outside the box," but they need to do something to generate interest in the station.

* The cycling federation needs to bring in the Olympic drug testers to "clean house." The cycling federation got off to a great start before the race when they did the following:

"The news of Landis' test has rocked the cycling world, already under a cloud following a wide-ranging doping investigation in Spain that led to the barring of several of the world's leading cyclists from the Tour.

On the eve of the Tour's start, nine riders -- including pre-race favorites Jan Ullrich and Ivan Basso -- were ousted, implicated in a Spanish doping investigation. Their names turned up on a list of 56 cyclists who allegedly had contact with a Spanish doctor at the center of the probe. Landis was not implicated in that investigation."

The Olympics drug testers need to test Landis immediately, and moving forward, should be the only organization to test cyclists. People around the world agree that the Olympics have the toughest standards when it comes to drugs and steroids and that is what cycling needs to buidl trust in its fans.

* Last, and this is strictly to rebuild the sport, the cycling organizers should give a select group of media outlets: Versus, SI, ESPN, USA Today and the top French sports newspapers with the opportunity to see the results of Landis' next test immediately and have the opportunity to watch the whole process -- from getting the blood to analyzing it to getting the result. The French newspapers will kill Landis and the sport of cycling until a clear-cut answer is determined.

This testosterone imbalance is the worst possible PR scenario for cycling. People will always question Armstrong and they will now do the same with Landis.


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