Great video from CGN today on the worst doping excuses in cycling. There have been some great ones over the years ; from blaming sweets to absorbing a conjoined twin riders have conjured up some strange stories. My favorite has always been Landis blaming whiskey. You have to appreciate the creativity.
Obviously, Lance Armstrong was always the biggest excuse maker, albeit lacking in the creativity department. For years he claimed over and over again that he never failed a doping test and was “the most tested athlete” on earth. He even claimed at one point that he had been tested over 500 times. It later emerged that the real number of his lifetime tests wasn’t even half that.
Gilberto Simoni – Midway through the 2002 edition of the Giro D’Italia the previous years champion Gilberto Simoni of the Saeco team, tested positive for cocaine and was promptly withdrawn from the race, the day after winning stage 11. The Italian’s defences to how the recreational drug had found its way into his system were quite imaginative. First, he proclaimed that an anaesthetic from his dentist contained cocaine, and secondly that the positive test came from some Peruvian sweets given to him as a gift by his aunt that he’d eaten and that contained the banned party drug of choice.
Tyler Hamilton – In 2004 American Tyler Hamilton of team Phonak tested positive for a blood transfusion, shortly after winning Gold in the individual Time Trial at the Athens Olympic Games. After originally being able to continue riding as his B sample was frozen he tested positive again at that years Vuelta Espana where he was banned for two years. However, one of the rather fantastical defences used by Hamilton was that he may have absorbed a twin in utero and is, therefore, a tetragametic chimaera.