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Old 01-14-13, 03:29 PM   #1
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Women pros: More balls than most of the men

Competitor Radio Interview:

http://competitorradio.competitor.com/?s=inga

From Cycling News article on Nicole Cooks retirement:

Cooke also spoke of how she had to take four of her teams to court over the years to recoup unpaid wages and compared her situation with some figures involved in the Armstrong case.

"When Lance cries on Oprah later this week and she passes him a tissue, spare a thought for all of those genuine people who walked away with no reward, Cooke said. "Tyler Hamilton will make more money from a book describing how he cheated than I will make in all my years of honest labour."
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Old 01-14-13, 04:19 PM   #2
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Hi, I think you have to pay for a subscription to hear the Inga Thompson interview.

Here's a link to Nicole Cook's blog:

http://www.nicolecooke.com/index.php...id=1&Itemid=18
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Old 01-14-13, 04:32 PM   #3
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Hi, I think you have to pay for a subscription to hear the Inga Thompson interview.

Here's a link to Nicole Cook's blog:

http://www.nicolecooke.com/index.php...id=1&Itemid=18
Nope. I download those podcasts all the time.
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Old 01-14-13, 05:26 PM   #4
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Well that was an interesting read... It would be nice if the economics of professional sports could be somehow made 'fair' - fair to all of the competitors - men, women, stars, domestiques, fans, and people dependent on the sport for a living (e.g. the stadium workers) - but I don't see that happening.
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Old 01-14-13, 05:32 PM   #5
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Define "fair"
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It would be nice if the economics of professional sports could be somehow made 'fair' - fair to all of the competitors - men, women, stars, domestiques, fans, and people dependent on the sport for a living (e.g. the stadium workers) - but I don't see that happening.
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Old 01-14-13, 05:46 PM   #6
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It's pretty simple to me. Equal pay for equal labor.

Well, here we go...
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Old 01-15-13, 04:41 AM   #7
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Thanks for starting this thread, Ex. I'm an admirer of Cooke - most of those who have found her "difficult" are the apologists for the establishment which has failed so miserably either to tackle doping or to support the womens branch of the sport.

Can't link to her blog for some reason, perhaps because it is receiving too much traffic. For those with the same problem,
here is the full text of her retirement statement. It's lengthy, but it is a remarkable and, to my mind, impressive document.

For example! Here she is on the male cyclists who claim that it wasimpossible to resist the pressure to take drugs:

Pressure was put on me but I was determined, and fortunate. I had a very good team-mate who was in a similar predicament and she took the same stance I did. Team-mates that say "NO" are priceless. I would have been very naive to think that I would not encounter moments, like this. I am appalled that so many men bleat on about the fact that the pressures were too great. Too great for what? This is not doing 71 mph on the motorway when the legal limit is 70. This is stealing somebody else's livelihood. It is theft just as much as putting your hand in a purse or wallet and taking money is theft. Theft has gone on since the dawn of time but because somebody, somewhere else, does it, does not mean it is right for you to do it. There can be no excuse.

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Old 01-15-13, 06:28 AM   #8
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I just listened to the whole thing. Very impressive! Many thanks for posting!
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Old 01-15-13, 08:45 AM   #9
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She decides to ride bikes due to a running injury, and 5 races later she is in the olympic trials.. :-)

She is a great interview.
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Old 01-15-13, 11:15 AM   #10
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She decides to ride bikes due to a running injury, and 5 races later she is in the olympic trials.. :-)

She is a great interview.
And a great rider, too. Maybe as good as Vos, who has eclipsed her but with the benefit of a less turbulent time. Hard to think of a world champion in any other professional sport who, year after year, has to sue their employers for breach of contract.
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Old 01-15-13, 11:33 AM   #11
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It's pretty simple to me. Equal pay for equal labor.

Well, here we go...
Equal pay for equal wattage? Equal pay for equal joules? It all gets so complicated...
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Old 01-15-13, 11:38 AM   #12
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I liked the retirement statement and her attitude as an athlete toward drug use and taking a position. I agree with her assessment of Tyler Hamilton.

IMO, this statement is the compelling reason she was successful riding without using drugs.

From a longer paragraph closing sentence. "I am so very fortunate to have been able to have won clean."

Followed by this paragraph:

Perhaps a major factor is that the races are short – only 3 hours long! This is perhaps a hard and unpopular fact that the male side may need to embrace if it is genuine about wanting to clean itself up."
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Old 01-15-13, 11:52 AM   #13
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Equal pay for equal wattage? Equal pay for equal joules? It all gets so complicated...
It is indeed complicated, but not for that reason. The incomes of sports professionals, like those of entertainers, is largely dictated by the revenues that can be generated through advertising and PR. Those are related to audience figures. But of course, audience figures are heavily influenced by promotion. If sponsors and TV networks don't promote the product (for example, because women are less powerful than men and they assume this makes it less interesting) we have a self-fulfilling, self-reinforcing cycle.

I've watched a lot of cycling over a lot of years. Womens' racing is often at least as animated as the male version, and if one tries to detach oneself from the "it's only worth watching the biggest and strongest" mentality, it can be mighty entertaining. Certainly I don't think there is much to choose between the entertainment value of the male and female track teams, for example.

But the question of equal pay is some way down the road. If we addressed the questionof equal rights, that would be a start. It is absurd that there is a minimum contract wage for men, but not for women. And there's a wider issue of sexism here. We send a very poor message to young women when we imply - more than imply - that great female athletes are somehow less important than their male equivalents.
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Old 01-15-13, 12:09 PM   #14
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I thought the women's Olympic road race was one of the most visually compelling and exciting races I've seen in a long time. And it was nice not to have to listen to a lot of commentary about so and so coming off a 2 year ban. That said while their "house" has been cleaner, they still have cockroaches.
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Old 01-15-13, 12:15 PM   #15
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I thought the women's Olympic road race was one of the most visually compelling and exciting races I've seen in a long time. And it was nice not to have to listen to a lot of commentary about so and so coming off a 2 year ban. That said while their "house" has been cleaner, they still have cockroaches.
I agree. And at the olympics, I wish it had been Cooke rather than Armistead contending with Vos in the sprint. Altogether a more equal contest. But politics, more than ability, dictated that Armistead was leading the team.
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Old 01-15-13, 12:53 PM   #16
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I agree. And at the olympics, I wish it had been Cooke rather than Armistead contending with Vos in the sprint. Altogether a more equal contest. But politics, more than ability, dictated that Armistead was leading the team.
Shelly would have beaten them both if she hadn't flatted
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Old 01-15-13, 01:04 PM   #17
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Shelly would have beaten them both if she hadn't flatted
Possibly. Then again, if my Aunt had balls, she'd be my Uncle...
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Old 01-15-13, 01:19 PM   #18
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Shelly would have beaten them both if she hadn't flatted
Amen, Olds is a monster and a former track world cup racer. After the Olympic Committee removed the women's points race from the games, she became a road racer / sprinter.

In her bid for the World Cup, we ran practice races for her as fund raisers against our men. Here she is taking a sprint from a former Garmin Chipotle pro Daniel Hollaway. Daniel is a fabulous points racer who competed in Elite Nationals last year.

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Old 01-15-13, 01:20 PM   #19
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If Holloway had better wheels, he would have beat her.
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Old 01-15-13, 02:23 PM   #20
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I love how he appears to be working a lot harder she is. She is laughing her way across the line.
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Old 01-15-13, 02:51 PM   #21
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I love how he appears to be working a lot harder she is. She is laughing her way across the line.
Where you not alive 40 years ago? That picture shows the "thrill of victory and the agony of defeat".
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Old 01-15-13, 03:17 PM   #22
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Hi, I am definitely not trying to defend Lance or what he did to others along his way to his Oprah confession. It's interesting to hear of the kind of treatment that Inga received from coaches that were and were not associated with Lance. It seems that bad behavior went along with drug use and drug dispensing. IMHO, the fact that some very good women (Thompson, Cooke, et al) were able to withstand the attempts to get them to be "good teammates" is great for the sport and for them personally. However, like it or not, it was still a vastly different circumstance that what the men faced.

It's one thing for me to say that I have never taken drugs (and I haven't). It's another for a male athlete at the top of the sport to "say no to drugs." The circumstances are completely different.

I'd like to think that if someone has the integrity to say no at one level, that they would have the same integrity at a different level and environment. Unfortunately, it appears that the ability to say no changes.

It would be interesting to see what would happen if unconditional amnesty were given to all cyclists -- amateur and professional -- in exchange for information on doping (types and techniques) and anonymously identifying drug sources. Add to that, permanent lifetime bans for any subsequent positive by anyone. Could this kind of framework clean up the sport?
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Old 01-15-13, 03:27 PM   #23
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Where you not alive 40 years ago? That picture shows the "thrill of victory and the agony of defeat".
Hey, I would've watched WWoS just to see the guy go off the side of the ski-jump ramp.
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Old 01-15-13, 03:33 PM   #24
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It would be interesting to see what would happen if unconditional amnesty were given to all cyclists -- amateur and professional -- in exchange for information on doping (types and techniques) and anonymously identifying drug sources. Add to that, permanent lifetime bans for any subsequent positive by anyone. Could this kind of framework clean up the sport?
I think you might have to couple the amnesty with Inga's suggestion that all samples saved from past events be taken out and tested using current techniques. That might increase the motivation for people to come forward and take advantage of the amnesty. Otherwise, if they haven't already been caught, then they aren't likely to be caught at all, so where is the motivation to come forward? I wholeheartedly agree with the use of lifetime bans - not sure anything else changes the risk-reward profile sufficiently.
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Old 01-15-13, 03:45 PM   #25
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However, like it or not, it was still a vastly different circumstance that what the men faced.
I dunno about that. Some women dopers (Jeanie Longo comes to mind) made pretty decent livings from their doping. No doubt the money wasn't as good as the men but you were still chasing Olympic gold in some cases, which has always had a nice bunch of money attached to it. Vastly would be overstating from my perspective, other than the lack of a grand tour on their calendar. The money at the bottom end certainly wasn't a lot different (not much).

Reading Dara Torres book every few pages there's one of her competitors getting caught or being in a doping program. Same as the men.

I don't think an amnesty program is a bad idea, but it's inherently unfair to some degree. Who got caught and who didn't was so much by chance and connections. But it's got to be better than the piecemeal approach that's happening now. Which brings up:

The best/only thing of value that Lance could provide would be a wholesale slaughter of the UCI, including a firebombing of the headquarters (metaphorically of course). Kill the head, you kill the body. The degree of corruption and money grabbing by the UCI has always astounded me, and that they have a guy in charge who was banned for life from the Olympics by his own federation is...beyond comprehension.

Or we could start cleaning house here at home. Look at the list of names on the USAC website and you get a sore neck from shaking your head. I don't hear so good anymore but they seem to have been particularly silent as of late. My guess is it's hard to get messages out of the bunker when you're hoping none of the bombs drop on your head.

So what's happening with Inga's letter?

(insert crickets here)
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