Contador, Landis, others opt to forgo doping suspensions

Alberto Contador, the winner of the 2010 Tour de France who was revealed this week to have tested positive for the mild stimulant drug clenbuterol late in the race, and disgraced cyclist Floyd Landis have said that they will decline to accept any current, past or pending suspensions as a result of their violation of doping-control policies, stating that they’d much rather continue racing for fame, money, and notoriety instead.

The Montreal-based World Anti-Doping Agency, which administrates and coordinates the athletic world’s version of the War on Drugs, released a statement in the wake of the cyclists’ revelations. “While we believe that athletes are beholden to the policies concerning performance-enhancing substances that are set forth by their disciplines’ governing bodies,” the statement read in part, “we will respect the intentions of Messrs. Contador and Landis and wish them a speedy, healthy and above all clean return to international competition.”

Contador, who also won the Tour de France in 2009, indicated that he really has neither the time nor the patience for this bullshit. “I have great respect for WADA, but greater respect for the sport of cycling, my first and truest love,” said Contador in a statement released through a spokesperson. “Drugs long ago tarnished athletics to the point at which my only two choices seemed to be retiring or riding clean against drugged-up riders.”

“Fortunately,” the statement concluded, “this was a false dilemma, as modest, cautious and basically legal doping has reinvigorated both my competitive standing and my ability to stand tall as a role model of perseverance to others who might be tempted to quit.” Contador, who has been dogged by drug allegations since his earliest days with the Astana racing team he hopes to leave as soon as his contract expires, did not say when and where he expects to race next.

Meanwhile, Landis–who was stripped of his 2006 Tour de France title and suspended for two years after testing positive for testosterone, then vehemently and repeatedly denied having used any banned substances before finally admitting this year that he’d been ass-deep in really good dope all along–expressed relief about having finally stood up for himself in a sport steeped in iniquities and a robber-baron mentality. “I’ve lost my prime years thanks to this fucking circus,” he said in a terse address to members of the press and cycling officials gathered in the Mennonite village in which he was raised. “I am grateful to be erasing any specter of tainted accomplishments on my part, and will do anything I need to to return to the top of the sport next year at age 35.” As no cameras were present at Landis’ address, it is unclear whether the “wink” several reporters noted accompanying this last declaration actually took place.

Other cyclists say that they, too, plan to turn down suspensions when they are finally caught with dirty piss. “Although I’m not in the Floyd Landis or Alberto Contador fan clubs,” seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong said of his former teammates, “but I have to hand it to them for being standing up and being men in all of this.” Armstrong, whose urine samples given during past competitions could theoretically result in a retroactive penalty should they turn up evidence of his having used banned substances, has already issued a retroactive “I call bullshit!” on his Web site.

© 2010 by the Scallion Press.

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