Tour de France 2021 - Speculation and Gossip

My guess is that by the time a rider gets to the world tour, they don’t need gym style muscle building protocols.

In Hamilton’s book, he basically says that he took T for recovery and EPO/blood for race performance. He says that all the other junk people had been taking in prior generations were nothing compared to T and EPO/blood.


Anyone I know who has been prescribed steroids for cancer or other disease blow up like a balloon.

I know whenever I’ve been prescribed them for infection, my appetite is a mess and I can’t sleep.

Based on that experience, I am really curious how guys who abuse them really pull it off, because everything that I have seen them do, is the opposite of what you want for cycling / weight loss.

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There are lots of different kinds of ‘steroids’ they all have different effects and side effects

Muscle loss seems to be a side effect of some corticosteroids. It seems like the riders use it to shed total body weight (arms, everywhere). Since they are still cycling 20 hours a week, they may not lose muscle or power in the legs. And maybe they also use some kind of anabolic (T?) on top of it, lift some weights, etc. plus who knows what else.

It’s certainly an off-label use!

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In the Kimmage interview, Landis says for the 2006 Tour he was down to HGH and blood bags. Presumably that’s why he fought the T positive so hard.

Corticosteroids and anabolic steroids are totally different chemicals; it’s the name ‘steroid’ that confuses people.

Corticosteroids can cause weight gain via holding water and fat gain following metabolic changes. Anabolic steroids also can cause water retention, but mainly the increase weight is through building muscle and enhancing glycogen stores. It’s also worth noting many anabolic steroids also increase red blood cell levels.

With careful diet and training, it is (apparently) very possible to use low-moderate doses of anabolics and see no changes to weight, as they also create metabolic changes whereby it’s possible to gain small amounts of muscle in a calorie deficit whilst also losing body fat. Throw in the enhanced recovery capabilities and the beneficial side effect of higher red blood cell levels, and you can see why it’s useful for those looking to abuse it.

However, it is supposedly quite hard to get round the testing system for anabolics, not least as the tests for them are now pretty sophisticated and well-established. Hence riders looking for other substances that are harder to detect. When EPO and HGH first started being used, there were no tests for either (which is what first led to the blood passports, where baseline haemocrit was looked at, amongst other things).

But taking low doses of anabolics shut down natural production of T in the body, causing a 2nd set of drugs needed to start the body back to being normal, with a dip in T after they come off the cycle this would mean weeks of limited recovery. I wonder if they just run a small post race dose of T to aid recovery.

“Strange noises” : Tour de France Mechanical Doping Claims Cycling News | HYPEBEAST

genuinely curious to know if any of these past doping programs had any sort of experimental structure or validity to them. like, give me some p-values.

This claim was originally published in a Swiss newspaper, and the claim was made that UAE, JV, Ineos, and maybe Bahrain had “strange noises” coming from their bikes. I don’t really see any basis for this claim, and it sounds like sour grapes from a team that didn’t get any wins to me.


Def sour grapes: “ Not only that, without mentioning the rider, he went on to point out that one suspect rider who has always been average suddenly became very strong after signing with a new team.”

hOw dArE sOmEoNe TrAin

I’d argue that the opposite is true for those moving to French teams. “Riders that used to be good are now shit.”

“There were strange noises coming from their jerseys as the flapped in the wind….”


That whole case stunk to the heavens - primarily from the timing if nothing else. That said I became more trustworthy of their answers when I heard about the guy who designed the test in the first place. He used elite swimmers to create the test…who would never be dehydrated. He admitted this was a massive error and apologized for anyone who has been previously impacted by his test thresholds.

Can’t find the article - he was quoted when it all went down…

This got me thinking (this whole thread but this post in particular)…isn’t this what clean riders should look like?

Come in very young - the crossers, Pogi, Remco.
Background in other sports at a high level.
Incredibly well trained during formative times of their lives
Use of data and technology their whole life

^Greg Lemond and Phinney’s dad fit this profile am I right?

If there ever was a truly clean champion wouldn’t they look just like Pogi?

This one I think - Scientist behind Wada Salbutamol rules sided with Froome |

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If you’re ready to toggle back to the skeptical side, here’s Ross Tucker (one of a handful of legitimate doping experts in the world) on the case:


Good read. One point he made which I side with is - what was Froome’s prior testing values for this substance and how much variability did it show?

Ultimately the whole things stinks.

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