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  1. #1
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    When is the (potential) start date of AC's ban?

    So here is my question. Suppose that CAS upholds a ban on Contador. When is the start date of the ban?

    For example, let us suppose the ban is for one year (extenuating circumstances and all). Does the year start from his last - albeit nullified - race, which is likely to be the 2011 TdF? Or does his ban start from way back when the action against him was initiated, in which case he would not even really miss a season of racing. True, his results would be nullified but the advertising revenue was still generated and he did not have to go without pay or racing for a year.

    Anyone know?

  2. #2
    Upgrading my engine DXchulo's Avatar
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    Well, he was suspended on 9/30/11 (that's when this article was published, at least). The RFEC cleared him on 2/15/11 (http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/cont...set-for-august). I'm sure his lawyers would argue that he already served 4 1/2 months of his ban.

    He's been racing since Volta ao Algarve, so I don't see any way how the time since then could be considered part of his ban. However, look at Alejandro Valverde. He raced part of 2010, but they set his suspension date (ruled in May 2010) as 1/1/10 and nullified his 2010 results. I'm not sure what their logic was behind that one.

    I'm not sure anyone knows the answer. It's up to the CAS at this point.
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    snob rogwilco's Avatar
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    I don't think anybody knows at this point. But I have to say, I don't think it would be right to backdate the start of the ban to July or August of last year or any bull**** like that. The point of a ban is not just to prevent an athlete from getting results during that time, but to prevent him from participating in competition period. By not getting banned immediately Contador was able to get his form to the point and develop perfectly normal for a full season while taking away legitimate results from (supposedly) clean athletes. I think Contador should serve a full 2 year ban without racing, and take away his palmares in the meantime since the 2010 TdF. That's the only correct and fair punishment imo.

    That said, all that only applies if the CAS finds him guilty of course. Which I don't think anymore is a sure thing.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by rogwilco View Post
    I don't think anybody knows at this point. But I have to say, I don't think it would be right to backdate the start of the ban to July or August of last year or any bull**** like that. The point of a ban is not just to prevent an athlete from getting results during that time, but to prevent him from participating in competition period. By not getting banned immediately Contador was able to get his form to the point and develop perfectly normal for a full season while taking away legitimate results from (supposedly) clean athletes. I think Contador should serve a full 2 year ban without racing, and take away his palmares in the meantime since the 2010 TdF. That's the only correct and fair punishment imo.

    That said, all that only applies if the CAS finds him guilty of course. Which I don't think anymore is a sure thing.
    Interesting, seems to me that if they strip his results AND keep him off the bike for 2 years prospectively, then the ban is effectively longer. And since he's testing clean now while he's racing and he's not currently under any suspension, the argument that he's taking away results from (supposedly) clean athletes doesn't seem to me to hold water. Then there's the fact that leaving the outcome of every race in which he rides in question for more than a year has very little to recommend it. Already the sporting press is speculating that Scarponi might be declared the winner of the Giro even though no one is suggesting that Contador tested positive for anything while riding in the Giro and certainly no one is suggesting that Scarponi demonstrated his superiority over Contador. People complain that Scarponi didn't ride to win, but why would he when he can play the odds that Contador will lose his case? This sorta crap delegitimizes the sport, IMO.

    Take the race that Valverde won last year, can't remember the name right now, where Freire finished second and was relegated. After they stripped Valverde, they declared Freire the winner, retroactively unrelegating him. Crazy stuff.

    It's one thing to take away the 2010 TdF if Contador tested positive in that race. To take away the 2011 Giro months after the fact, when he didn't test positive (that we know of) and give it to Scarponi--and let's face it, the odds that he or any other rider is clean aren't great--tarnishes the victory and does little or nothing to deter doping. Who here thinks Pereiro was clean?

    I can't wait until they decide to award the 1999 TdF to Stephane Heulot. He was only 28 minutes down, he's a worthy winner.

    Oh, I don't know the answer to the OP's question. Sorry for ranting.

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    snob rogwilco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by harlond View Post
    Interesting, seems to me that if they strip his results AND keep him off the bike for 2 years prospectively, then the ban is effectively longer. And since he's testing clean now while he's racing and he's not currently under any suspension, the argument that he's taking away results from (supposedly) clean athletes doesn't seem to me to hold water.
    That is true, but assuming a) Contador is found guilty by the CAS and b) that you trust that court and consider that decision to be correct and fair, then it follows that in hindsight he should not have been racing all that time even though he was legally allowed to, and all that delay is due to actions on his part. Assuming a) and b) Contador could have cut down that whole process by saying "yes I did it, sorry" in August, then he would be halfway through his ban already and all that drama wouldn't have happened.

    On the other hand if you backdate the ban to august, then it's not much of a penalty at all, besides the financial stuff, which objectively is a lot of course, but Contador is a multi-millionaire already and has many years left in his career. Losing a couple million dollars probably don't hurt his lifestyle at all. But one part of a doping ban is simply being banned from competition. There's no better training for racing, than racing and not having that part included minimises the impact of a doping conviction. Consider this: what if the CAS gives him a backdated 1-year ban like the Spanish federation did initially? Then he loses a Giro, and one or two TdFs but he had no ban in competition at all and can simply continue on like nothing happend! That totally circumvents the point of banning convicted dopers.

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    Upgrading my engine DXchulo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by harlond View Post
    Interesting, seems to me that if they strip his results AND keep him off the bike for 2 years prospectively, then the ban is effectively longer. And since he's testing clean now while he's racing and he's not currently under any suspension, the argument that he's taking away results from (supposedly) clean athletes doesn't seem to me to hold water.
    That's pretty much why they didn't take away Valverde's results prior to 2010. There was no evidence that he was doping in, say, 2009. I'm guessing Alberto has had plenty of tests done since 2/15 and if he hasn't failed one, there's no reason to take away the Giro. To me, they can either (a) suspend him beginning 9/30/10 and take away all his results since the 2010 TDF or (b) suspend him beginning ?/?/11 and just take away the 2010 TDF (where the positive test occurred).

    I would much prefer option (b). You can strip his 2011 results, but he's still going to feel like he won those races and everybody is always going to say that Scarponi won, but... Not letting a guy race at all is much more of a punishment than taking away results after the fact.
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    Upgrading my engine DXchulo's Avatar
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    I also agree with rogwilco that there isn't a ruling the CAS could come up with that would really surprise me at this point. 3 months ago I thought for sure that they would overturn that stupid decision by the RFEC. The longer this goes on, the less certain I become. There certainly wasn't any urgency to get this done before the 2011 TDF like they were saying earlier this year. I get the feeling that the worst they are going to do is ban him so he only ends up missing the 2011 Vuelta and the 2012 Giro.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rogwilco View Post
    That is true, but assuming a) Contador is found guilty by the CAS and b) that you trust that court and consider that decision to be correct and fair, then it follows that in hindsight he should not have been racing all that time even though he was legally allowed to, and all that delay is due to actions on his part. Assuming a) and b) Contador could have cut down that whole process by saying "yes I did it, sorry" in August, then he would be halfway through his ban already and all that drama wouldn't have happened.

    On the other hand if you backdate the ban to august, then it's not much of a penalty at all, besides the financial stuff, which objectively is a lot of course, but Contador is a multi-millionaire already and has many years left in his career. Losing a couple million dollars probably don't hurt his lifestyle at all. But one part of a doping ban is simply being banned from competition. There's no better training for racing, than racing and not having that part included minimises the impact of a doping conviction. Consider this: what if the CAS gives him a backdated 1-year ban like the Spanish federation did initially? Then he loses a Giro, and one or two TdFs but he had no ban in competition at all and can simply continue on like nothing happend! That totally circumvents the point of banning convicted dopers.
    You say he shouldn't have been racing anyway, but we don't know that until the legal proceedings are done. The Spanish authorities have ruled that he should be racing, and even if CAS overturns that, the CAS result does not mean the Spanish result was unreasonable or unfounded. Until the legal proceedings are done, and so long as he tests OK, I can't think of any good reason why he shouldn't be racing, and I can think of plenty of good reasons why so long as he tests clean, we should let races be decided on the road instead of in court.

    I understand your argument that he has not been sufficiently punished if he gets to keep racing while we wait to find out who's right, but I think it's less important to punish Contador (any more than the 2-year ban would) than to have races decided on the road. If Contador has no positives from the Giro, then Scarponi can never be a worthy winner. Frequently elevating the unworthy into places of honor just can't be good for the sport, any more than having to wait months to find out who "won" the race can be good for the sport.

  9. #9
    Senior Member SouthFLpix's Avatar
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    I think they will consider the time from just after the 2010 TDF until his suspension was overturned as 'time served'. He'll be allowed to keep his results from the time when he was reinstated because they gave him the 'green light' to race again. He did not race while he was suspended for those 4.5 months, so that has to count toward his time.

    If it's a year sentence, then he will have already served 4.5months and he will have 7.5 to go. This means he'll miss the 2011 Vuelta, but his 2011 Giro and 2011 TDF results will stand. So with a one year suspension he can still go for a the Giro-Tour double, but not the Giro-Tour-Vuelta triple (which has never been done before).

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    snob rogwilco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by harlond View Post
    You say he shouldn't have been racing anyway, but we don't know that until the legal proceedings are done. The Spanish authorities have ruled that he should be racing, and even if CAS overturns that, the CAS result does not mean the Spanish result was unreasonable or unfounded. Until the legal proceedings are done, and so long as he tests OK, I can't think of any good reason why he shouldn't be racing, and I can think of plenty of good reasons why so long as he tests clean, we should let races be decided on the road instead of in court.
    Right. I just mean in hindsight, if he's found guilty, that if you look back from there then, that from that point of view, knowing the proper authorities found him guilty that he shouldn't have been racing and that the fact that he was racing anyway is his own fault so it shouldn't be used to his benefit. Contador does have the right to race now, but that doesn't mean he necessarily has to use that right or that it doesn't have consequences.

    But if he's not found guilty all that discussion is moot anyway.

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    Quote Originally Posted by harlond View Post
    Until the legal proceedings are done, and so long as he tests OK, I can't think of any good reason why he shouldn't be racing, and I can think of plenty of good reasons why so long as he tests clean, we should let races be decided on the road instead of in court.
    What I understand you to be saying is that none of Contador's races since he was allowed to race again should be stripped from him as long as he tests clean. I, like you, think it is silly/pointless to award winners to races in court rooms. But I do still think Contador should still be stripped of his victories during 2011. Here is my thinking. While he might be testing clean currently, if he is later found to have doped then I think it is fair to assume that he continued to dope during the intermediary time period. An object in motion tends to stay in motion until it presumably gets banned.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kasseien View Post
    Here is my thinking. While he might be testing clean currently, if he is later found to have doped then I think it is fair to assume that he continued to dope during the intermediary time period. An object in motion tends to stay in motion until it presumably gets banned.
    Hey let's make this personal. What if I go to your employer and say I saw you violating company policies. You deny all charges. The company suspends you without pay and given the nature of your work, no one else will hire you. Eventually, the company investigates and finds you innocent.

    Now by your logic, you can't go back to work while I decide whether I will appeal the company's decision. That adds another month for you without pay even though the company found no reason to suspend you. Then at the last minute I do decide to appeal. That takes at least another six months. Again no work and no pay while this process runs its course even though the only hearing that you had found you innocent. Are you willing to sign up for that deal?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kasseien View Post
    While he might be testing clean currently, if he is later found to have doped then I think it is fair to assume that he continued to dope during the intermediary time period. An object in motion tends to stay in motion until it presumably gets banned.
    He's been tested in the interim as well, and since no positive results have been announced or leaked to L'Equipe, I think it's a fair assumption that he tested clean. That's all it is, an assumption, but still it seems to me that you can't fairly assume that someone was not clean during the period in which he tested clean.

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    Quote Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
    Hey let's make this personal. What if I go to your employer and say I saw you violating company policies. You deny all charges. The company suspends you without pay and given the nature of your work, no one else will hire you. Eventually, the company investigates and finds you innocent.

    Now by your logic, you can't go back to work while I decide whether I will appeal the company's decision. That adds another month for you without pay even though the company found no reason to suspend you. Then at the last minute I do decide to appeal. That takes at least another six months. Again no work and no pay while this process runs its course even though the only hearing that you had found you innocent. Are you willing to sign up for that deal?
    This story seems misleading to me. The point is that Contador IS riding and getting paid right now. There are people that are arguing that he shouldn't be, but I am not one of them.

    Also, I hope it is clear that when I say we should strip the 2011 results I am assuming that the CAS finds Contador guilty. Otherwise there is no reason to take any action.

    So, in that light, let's continue the story, the crime I am accused of is mis-leading the stockholders for my own personal gain. The scenario is missing the ending where there is a guilty verdict. So let's suppose at the end of the story above I am found guilty of the charge. There are going to be a lot of people wondering why I was allowed to work in the intervening time and continue to mislead the stockholders for my own gain. Here I think the analogy breaks down. We can't go back and have AC un-ride those races, but we can take away the personal gain part (his results). His pay from Saxo Bank he gets to keep.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kasseien View Post
    The scenario is missing the ending where there is a guilty verdict. So let's suppose at the end of the story above I am found guilty of the charge.
    Except in Contador's and my scenario there has been a verdict and that verdict has been not guilty. The issue is how much can we sanction an individual who has been found not guilty while that verdict is under appeal?

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    I actually don't think that is the issue. I won't speak for anyone else but, I am definitely not arguing for sanctioning Contador right now. In my original post, I stated 'suppose that CAS decides to ban Contador'. I was hoping to talk about what happens in that case.

    Obviously no one knows what CAS will do if they decide he is guilty but I think stripping his results from 2011 makes a lot of sense in conjunction with a ban.

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