The Doping Problem Hits Australia's Cycling Media

In this column I asked this question : Need to past biking dopers continue to gain from the game they cheated?

It had been motivated by hearing which Stuart O’Grady, among Australia’s quickest and many prosperous cyclists and also a recognized doper, was a co-host from the brand new SBS Bike Lane app which began last Sunday.

I contended the sport of biking requires a more powerful message to counter the present dominant opinion about it that cheats finally flourish. I made a request for Australian biking to distance itself from ex-dopers, and deliver a very clear message that this game doesn’t welcome cheats.

In reaction to my piece, a small number of people got in contact to register their arrangement, such as ex-elite riders, a few arbitrary cycling lovers, and also the President of Mountain Bike Australia, Russell Baker himself a outspoken critic on the usage of previous dopers to encourage biking now. In contrast, the absence of official reaction so far was telling.

Digital Silence From Cycling Media

Before submitting my piece a week, I provided it to some renowned biking media outlet. They declined, not wanting to only O’Grady out when they’d completed past interview bits with known dopers who had tested positive or left admissions. They did not wish to seem hypocritical. Livescore

Matt Keenan, a top profile cycling commentator and the most important man behind the brand new SBS Bike Lane series, tweeted a hyperlink to my own piece and opened it up for discussion, asking his over 12,000 Twitter followers to his or her own thoughts. The following public response tweets I saw comprised mixed opinions about the usage of O’Grady from the new SBS series.

Now, this problem did not exactly trend large on social networking. However, the response is intriguing, particularly when seen together with the public opinion in online remarks webpages when the O’Grady entrance first surfaced a couple of decades back.

Because of this alone, you would think there could be a official comment from SBS to describe to biking lovers why O’Grady was awarded the chance to once more be part of the biking story. O’Grady was a really substantial figure in the game, along with his 2013 entry to EPO use was a huge moment for biking.

SBS have an increasingly significant part in Australia as the top public broadcaster of biking news, and race policy such as the large Australian races along with the pro-cycling Earth Tour’s monument races Tour de France, Giro d’Italia, and so on.

To be honest, a few at SBS seem willing to learn more about the issues I’ve raised Philip Gomes an Editor and Producer in SBS Cycling Central, additionally tweeted about my pillar bit a week, inviting me to take part in some Cycling Central podcast. The conversation we had in which is accessible online after now.

And it might also be true that the Bike Lane app intends to talk about this thing if Stuart O’Grady’s 3 show co-hosting place really starts to 14 June. I believe that they should talk to it.

However, a crucial point here is that I should not be the sole one highlighting these things today.

The general public debate around the choice to welcome Stuart O’Grady back as a co-host of the Bike Lane app, and associated questions that spring up about doping prevention messages in biking, ought to be directed by those parties responsible to the biking narrative – i.e. biking press, Cycling Australia, along with the biking fraternity itself.

Silence From Cycling Australia

Again, due to this previous public response to O’Grady’s entry to EPO usage, and also the persistent difficulty cycling has had drugs and doping, you may also believe the game’s peak governing body in this state would have a position on the O’Grady SBS Bike Lane problem.

Rather, and what sounds even stranger to me personally, the CA CEO Nick Green really appeared on the early installment of this SBS Bike Lane at a section known as the ‘hot lap’. Ever since that time, CA has also been boosting the app to its massive Insights foundation on social networking.

Certainly someone at CA could have observed that the possible difficulty here. Does not Green’s appearance on a TV cycling app to be co-hosted with a confessed doper pose a potential image issue. Again, such questions shouldn’t go awry.

Time For Messages That Are Clear On Drugs In Cycling

Allow me to make it clear, I’m not saying that Stuart O’Grady is your principal problem in all this. O’Grady is just the tip of the iceberg, and also the broader issues here about networking messages on doping and the direction of cycling’s governing bodies are of greater importance.

I believe CA and its own state / territory affiliated organisations will need to adopt an unambiguous stance against doping a stance that ought to incorporate an honest public debate about the way the game reacts to the riders that have cheated on it. A discussion is needed on which messages about Australian biking are okay. It’s time for CA to demonstrate the direction on the issue that Australian biking deserves.

A number of the cycling press in Australia could even take a more ethical and considered stance on this situation. Rather, they become a part of this problem whenever they cover an ex-doper for opinions or appearances, whenever they interview an ex-doper, not take a vital position on the past, and each time they shine over the doping problem in taste to get a story and set of photos to market.

First and foremost, I believe that the SBS Bike Lane specifically shouldn’t continue to allow O’Grady’s public return to biking go unexplained. Should it, biking buffs will fill in the gaps with this for themselves and the conclusion will reach this is there’s tacit approval of winners that use prohibited substances. The message that this leaves us is cheats finally win in biking.

I would ask Cycling Australia and the Australian biking networking : Is that the concept concerning biking that you need to view going unchallenged? Is it a message you need facing junior cyclists.

When there’s an alternate message, then Australian biking fans deserve to listen to it so we all know in clear terms what we’re seeing, and also where this game is heading.

You may wonder why I am persisting with this problem today. Australian biking isn’t in the midst of a doping scandal. And a few in biking have stated the elite levels of the game are cleaner currently than previously.

In my opinion that is just the correct time to act, whenever there is relative calm and room to think about the problems and identify opportunities for apparent doping prevention messages.

It is only a pity that Cycling Australia and also the leaders of biking media in this nation aren’t leading the drive.

That is why I am starting a petition with this issue (see below) an attempt to challenge the concept that cheats finally flourish within this gorgeous sport.

This is but a little gesture. It would work far better if a renowned individuality from the world of cycling, a riders of this calibre of Cadel Evans, a past Olympian, or even a previous Australian champion was top this push.

However, the odds of that occurring are slim. The Australian biking fraternity does not want to rock the ship. As a single ex-elite Australian fisherman stated to me once I asked for his perspective on the request, “I think that it would be hard for riders to register for me it’d be political suicide”.

I admit that this is a tricky problem for biking. However, I feel now is the time to act anyhow.

I’ll ensure that Cycling Australia and affiliated businesses, along with the applicable Australian biking websites see this particular piece. And in time, I’ll send the request under to Cycling Australia with yet many signatures I really do get be it 10, 100, or even 1000.