15 October 2012

Quote of the Day: Exactly whose fault is this?

What? - The UCI blamed the spectators for doping 

Today's quotes comes from an article today by VeloNation about a previous exchange between WADA president Richard Pound and UCI’s previous president, Hein Verbruggen:

....“I said ‘Hein, you guys have a huge problem in your sport.’ He said ‘what do you mean?’ I said ‘the doping.’ ‘Well,’ he said, ‘that is really the fault of the spectators.’

“I said, ‘I beg your pardon...it is the spectators’ fault?’ He said, ‘yes…if they were happy with the Tour de France at 25 k [km/h], it would be fine. But if they want it at 41, 42, the riders have to prepare.’”

The VeloNation article goes on to state, "The UCI recently denied that it had any culpability in the doping epidemic which afflicted cycling in the past. Its current president Pat McQuaid told the press that the governing body did everything it could at the time and was blameless."

Anyone willing to watch a clean peloton of cyclists average 25km/h over 3,497 kilometres in 3 weeks - now would be a good time to speak up and say "that is fast enough." 

Supposedly the 1903 winner of the Tour de France averaged 25.679 km/h (on paved and unpaved roads), between 1980 and 1990, the average speed of a Tour de France rider cranked up to 37.5 km/h. Lance Armstrong had the fastest Tour victory, completing the 2005 Tour de France with an average speed of 41.654 kilometres per hour (25.883 mph). But that's not really a record anymore, or a victory. In 2011 Cadel Evans won the Tour de France with an average speed of 39.79 km/h. Bradley Wiggins was only slightly faster in 2012 winning with an average speed of 39.83 km/h over 3,497km. We probably should take into account advancements in equipment technology and training, but that seems more than fast enough, they could slow a couple kilometers and I bet hardly a spectator would notice, or complain. 

Read Tour de France winners and their average speeds or Every Tour de France winner listed from Garin to Wiggins

I couldn't tell - was Tejay going 35 or 38km/h? It sure felt fast enough to me.   
Photo by Karen at PedalDancer.com