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Is deal-making to determine race outcomes illegal?

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Is deal-making to determine race outcomes illegal?

Old 08-30-12, 07:52 AM
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JeffOYB
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Is deal-making to determine race outcomes illegal?

When riders from different teams collude to determine race outcomes is that cheating?
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Old 08-30-12, 08:34 AM
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I believe there is a rule against it. However, it's vague and virtually unenforceable.

These guys are professionals. They're riding to make money. If they can make more money tossing the race, they'll do that.
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Old 08-30-12, 08:43 AM
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Ah yea here it is:
1.2.081 Riders shall sportingly defend their own chances. Any collusion or behaviour likely to falsify or go against the interests of the competition shall be forbidden.

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Old 08-30-12, 09:11 AM
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It falls in a gray area which many Americans will find outside their bounds of ethics. The deeper one looks the more they might believe the sport is scripted much closer to professional wrestling than the all out to win attitude of a NFL football game.
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Old 08-30-12, 09:17 AM
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Maybe they should start enforcing it more, to make racing fair.

Isn't such collusion likely at least as significant as doping?

Or maybe we should appreciate more the reality that was mentioned, that sport relates closely to showbiz.
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Old 08-30-12, 09:19 AM
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Did you ever read Dog in a Hat? If not, you should.
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Old 08-30-12, 09:31 AM
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Originally Posted by JeffOYB View Post
Maybe they should start enforcing it more, to make racing fair.

Isn't such collusion likely at least as significant as doping?

Or maybe we should appreciate more the reality that was mentioned, that sport relates closely to showbiz.
How would you enforce it? If two riders are up the road, and one of them is riding for the KOM and the other is a breakaway artist looking for the stage win, are you going to tell them they can't work for each other?

How is it not fair? If an athlete is fit enough to put himself into a position in which he must be bought off, then his fitness and strength nets him some money. That's pretty much the definition of professional sports.

If you feel cheated somehow while viewing, well I'm guessing the races you watch are actually never bought. No one is going to sell a Tour stage, for example.
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Old 08-30-12, 10:03 AM
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Originally Posted by JeffOYB View Post
When riders from different teams collude to determine race outcomes is that cheating?
I know a few old school Sicilians who are familiar with that type of fixing. Cheating? Not if everybody wins!
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Old 08-30-12, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Commodus View Post
How would you enforce it? If two riders are up the road, and one of them is riding for the KOM and the other is a breakaway artist looking for the stage win, are you going to tell them they can't work for each other?

How is it not fair? If an athlete is fit enough to put himself into a position in which he must be bought off, then his fitness and strength nets him some money. That's pretty much the definition of professional sports.

If you feel cheated somehow while viewing, well I'm guessing the races you watch are actually never bought. No one is going to sell a Tour stage, for example.
I don't know as I mind it that much, but if it's against the rules then something should be done about it. Some judgement call, perhaps, by arbitrators. Sound familiar?

If it affects races, like doping is said to, and if it's illegal, like doping is, then why not fight it and root it out?

I've read "DOG HAT." Relevance? It reveals doping and fixing. Doping is being fought with millions$, careers ruined, etc. Fixing might also be an interesting aspect to root out. Sure, it would be tough to prevent. But isn't doping also tough to prevent?

Just a thought. I don't have the answer. It seems like theater to me so I don't mind all the drama. The rules are part of the drama, too. Pointing out the arbitrary selectivity over some of the rules maybe helps us see better the extent to which justice isn't really involved, but instead drama is -- showbiz -- theater. Grasping and careerism by any means. It's the wild west out there! May the best actor win...
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Old 08-30-12, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by JeffOYB View Post
I don't know as I mind it that much, but if it's against the rules then something should be done about it. Some judgement call, perhaps, by arbitrators. Sound familiar?

If it affects races, like doping is said to, and if it's illegal, like doping is, then why not fight it and root it out?

I've read "DOG HAT." Relevance? It reveals doping and fixing. Doping is being fought with millions$, careers ruined, etc. Fixing might also be an interesting aspect to root out. Sure, it would be tough to prevent. But isn't doping also tough to prevent?

Just a thought. I don't have the answer. It seems like theater to me so I don't mind all the drama. The rules are part of the drama, too. Pointing out the arbitrary selectivity over some of the rules maybe helps us see better the extent to which justice isn't really involved, but instead drama is -- showbiz -- theater. Grasping and careerism by any means. It's the wild west out there! May the best actor win...
You seem to be in the midst of some sort of personal crisis regarding Armstrong's recent troubles. Understandable I guess.

Otherwise, I imagine it would be very easy to see the difference between doping and collusion.
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Old 08-30-12, 11:36 AM
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In Dog in a Hat, much of the dealmaking seemed to be in races without much pressure so that the hometown guy could win (if memory serves). At higher level races I could see it having more of an influence when your team's guy is out of a race you helping (or trying to hurt) someone you either like or hate based on your prior feelings about them. **** happens in any sport. I don't gamble, so I don't really care if people aren't always giving it their all as long as it looks like they are and is compelling. Now those Chinese and Korean teams in olympic badminton that threw their matches to get in an easier bracket or pro basketball/football teams that tank down the stretch to get better draft picks, yeah that pisses me off when I can tell you're not trying your hardest to win.
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Old 08-30-12, 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Commodus View Post
Ah yea here it is:
1.2.081 Riders shall sportingly defend their own chances. Any collusion or behaviour likely to falsify or go against the interests of the competition shall be forbidden.

Which quite clearly makes riders in a break allowing eachother to gain what matters to each well within the rules.

I'd say it makes any payback in terms of money outside the rules.

It leaves a lot of gray areas. I'd say payback is a completely seperate race is not on, immediate payback meaning in the same stage I'd say is clearly on. But waht of payback in subsequent stages of the same race?
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Old 08-30-12, 12:15 PM
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Obviously, teams can't collaborate in advance to decide who will win.

That said, riders from different teams working together to advance their own agendas have been a part of the sport for decades. E.g. if you have a breakaway of 4 riders from different teams, it's perfectly normal for them to work together on that day to keep the breakaway alive.

What often happens in that situation is as the riders get closer to the finish, their need to collaborate gets overwhelmed by their individual desire to take the stage. The closer they get to the finish, the less efficiently they work together, and often this weakens a breakaway to the point that they get overtaken.

I don't think fixing races is a major concern for cycling. It's pretty rare in most sports anyway.
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Old 08-30-12, 01:00 PM
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Race fixing is poised to be the new "doping". There is an international push to enact legislature to prohibit influencing the outcome of sport, in an effort to protect the multi billion dollar gambling industry. Most of this is fueled by Football (soccer) and Cricket at the international level. But, the outcome may have affects across all sport, including cycling. I know that Australia recently passed an anti match fixing law and there was an interesting look at how it may effect cycling in Bicycling Australia.
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Old 08-30-12, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by JeffOYB View Post
If it affects races, like doping is said to, and if it's illegal, like doping is, then why not fight it and root it out?
Because, just like some pro-cyclists, some rules are liked more or less than others, and some liked not at all.
What's consistency got to do, got to with it?
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Old 08-30-12, 03:31 PM
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Originally Posted by bigfred View Post
Race fixing is poised to be the new "doping". There is an international push to enact legislature to prohibit influencing the outcome of sport, in an effort to protect the multi billion dollar gambling industry. Most of this is fueled by Football (soccer) and Cricket at the international level. But, the outcome may have affects across all sport, including cycling. I know that Australia recently passed an anti match fixing law and there was an interesting look at how it may effect cycling in Bicycling Australia.
I don't think most Americans realize just how ingrained betting is elsewhere. I play and watch rugby. When watching feeds from Austrailia the game feed itself is giving the betting line for the match in progress and often even the line for bets on specific aspects of the match.
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Old 08-30-12, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by bigfred View Post
Race fixing is poised to be the new "doping". There is an international push to enact legislature to prohibit influencing the outcome of sport, in an effort to protect the multi billion dollar gambling industry. Most of this is fueled by Football (soccer) and Cricket at the international level. But, the outcome may have affects across all sport, including cycling. I know that Australia recently passed an anti match fixing law and there was an interesting look at how it may effect cycling in Bicycling Australia.
I remember there was some controversy regarding Contador's gifting of a stage to Tiralongo at last year's Giro, people talking about how it affected the gamblers.

I think the consensus was that these gamblers could get stuffed, so I don't know if cycling culture really has much use or interest in this aspect of sport.
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Old 08-30-12, 03:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Commodus View Post
I remember there was some controversy regarding Contador's gifting of a stage to Tiralongo at last year's Giro, people talking about how it affected the gamblers.

I think the consensus was that these gamblers could get stuffed, so I don't know if cycling culture really has much use or interest in this aspect of sport.
And rightfully so (telling the gamblers to get stuffed). It is like complaining that a team did not try to run up the score to beat the spread in American Football.

Now if the allegation can be made that a decision to gift or not gift a win was influenced by hte betting involved that is a different story.
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Old 08-30-12, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Keith99 View Post
And rightfully so (telling the gamblers to get stuffed). It is like complaining that a team did not try to run up the score to beat the spread in American Football.

Now if the allegation can be made that a decision to gift or not gift a win was influenced by hte betting involved that is a different story.
Right. Probably all of this collusion and gifting and whatnot is okey dokey, until it comes out that money is involved - specifically, riders getting paid to lose. I'm guessing that's when people start getting grumpy, and maybe with reason.
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Old 08-30-12, 04:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Commodus View Post
I remember there was some controversy regarding Contador's gifting of a stage to Tiralongo at last year's Giro, people talking about how it affected the gamblers.

I think the consensus was that these gamblers could get stuffed, so I don't know if cycling culture really has much use or interest in this aspect of sport.
It has nothing to do with whether cycling has interest or concern with that "aspect" and everything to do with government legislature that will define the rules by which "all" sport is governed. It gets really murky as most the laws make some concession for "behaviour that is in keeping with the sports heritage, etc." The real target is any "outside influence". But, when even the inside participants have something to gain financially, the laws may be exercised. The real challenge for them(governing bodies), is to manage the over/under situation, where a team or individual may still win, but, the betting line has been greatly influenced by how hard a team or individual continued to compete and the subsequent winning margin.

I predict, that it may not be that long before we see a return to the ways of old. Where there is a completely seperate set of governing bodies for "Pro" sports, seperate from the "Amateur/Olympic" governing body. The current Lance situation has the possibility of seriously pushing the issue one way or the other. If the UCI or ASO tell USADA and WADA to get stuffed, there is a very real possibility that we'll see either, WADA's power and influence greatly diminished, or, a situation where they (WADA) push for even great authority over sport and a move from them advising to Governing bodies to actually dictating to governing bodies.

Meanwhile, the answer to the OP's initial question is, Yes, in some venues, match fixing is illegal. But, within cycling it is generally accepted as part of the chess game, regardless of being legal or not.
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