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Drummer Boy

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For me, there are a number of things that give this story plausibility:

1 - It is possible. Clearly and totally, don't let anybody claim it isn't. The only thing that might prohibit using it is cost, but if it is used sparingly for your star rider, then it can't be that big a cost in the scheme of things.
When these stories were first floated (with the accusations against Cancellara), I forwarded one of the articles to a friend of mine who is a machinist by trade, used to race motorcycles, and has long been a cycling enthusiast and fan of the sport. His immediate response (which actually surprised me) was, "It's absolutely possible." He didn't seem to think that it would much of a problem at all to fit an effective motor inside a frame. It's the "effective" part that still has lingering questions for me.

2. If it is possible, the belief that riders won't do it? They'll do anything, even set alarm clocks so they don't die overnight, their blood's so thick. What moral boundary would stop them from cheating in this, risk free, way?
Interestingly, this was the exact response the same friend of mine had as well when it was suggested that riders would never risk being caught with a  motor


Of course such a deception would also allow the rider to have complete confidence in their ability to pass any and all doping tests—blood, urine, hair, etc. (providing that their bodies were actually "clean"). It really would be the ultimate slight of hand. Look all you want over here, while the real cheating is going on over there.


And there was this slightly puzzling tweet last summer.
https://twitter.com/FakieFrankie/status/491609188833824768

"It can be tiny."  :slow
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  • DB-Coop

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    "It can be tiny."  :slow

    The SRM would be my place of choice for hiding this, there is a reason to have electronics, and batteries, and it is close to power transmission, has to be there or the wheels imo.

    Of course such a deception would also allow the rider to have complete confidence in their ability to pass any and all doping tests—blood, urine, hair, etc. (providing that their bodies were actually "clean"). It really would be the ultimate slight of hand. Look all you want over here, while the real cheating is going on over there.

    The engine would only assist, so regular doping would still provide an advantage, however it would move the power to weight ratio in the favor of skinnier riders. Which makes sense with what we are seeing.  :-x
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  • Edddeduck

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    I'm interested in potential tricks as much as anyone but this is just a slippery road and basic physics at work nothing more.

    Had similar happen to me on a mountain bike on a dirt track. Here is a video of how you can make this happen yourself on your own bike. No engines needed :-)

    http://instagram.com/p/sh0fSPirPW/


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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  • Joelsim

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    I'm interested in potential tricks as much as anyone but this is just a slippery road and basic physics at work nothing more.

    Had similar happen to me on a mountain bike on a dirt track. Here is a video of how you can make this happen yourself on your own bike. No engines needed :-)

    http://instagram.com/p/sh0fSPirPW/


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    It's not what Ferrari thinks.
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  • LukasCPH

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    To better reflect the topic of the thread, I have changed the title from "Did Ryder have an engine in his bike" to "'Hesjedalgate' and possible mechanical assistance".
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    Drummer Boy

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    To better reflect the topic of the thread, I have changed the title
    And to better reflect a sense of community, I have removed my previous snarky post, which no longer has any relevance given the new, and more appropriate, thread title.
     ;)
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  • Drummer Boy

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    Twitter is telling me that both QuickStep and Trek had the bikes examined by the UCI after MSR today. Hmmm...

    https://twitter.com/gregorbrown/status/579678031217844224

    https://twitter.com/gregorbrown/status/579688940980047874
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  • Race Radio

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    Twitter is telling me that both QuickStep and Trek had the bikes examined by the UCI after MSR today. Hmmm...


    37 bikes in total from multiple teams
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  • Pro Cycling is like sausage, I love it but I don't want to know how it is made.

    neppe

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    tv2.no wrote an article 28 February: (bad google translate)
    Quote
    Real fear of "doped" bikes in professional cycling
    Norwegian Cycling Federation has received disturbing information from the UCI.

    Gent (TV2 Sport) Now it is not doped cyclists concerned, but doped bikes.

    Norwegian Cycling Federation (NCF) has just been informed that it is possible to hide battery-powered engines in the bikes used in professional cycling.

    - There is  evidence that it is possible (to hide engines in bikes), but no one has been caught, says Secretary General Bjørn Sætre TV2.

    My interpretation: UCI had read the CIRC report and decided to act; send out information to the national federations and start scanning bikes at races again.

    TV2's expert commentator says in the same article:

    Quote
    This is consistent with information that TV2 bike expert, Mads Kaggestad, has recieved.

    - When the UCI goes out and warns against this, is a clear signal. This is also consistent with what I've heard from pro cyclists and others involved in pro cycling. There is a real concern that competitors use motor in the bike, says the former pro cyclist.

    - What kind of scale are we talking about?

    - From the messages of concern I have received, it has such an extent that we are not talking about individual cyclists, but environments, where it is used. Then it can spread quickly. It can be many, unfortunately, answers Kaggestad.


    Link to the article (which is in Norwegian): http://www.tv2.no/a/6630862
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  • Joelsim

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    There's no smoke without fire. Maybe Cav can get a little engine to pop his chain back on when it slips off.
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  • mew

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    37 bikes in total from multiple teams

    Just to keep things spicy I wish someone had a motor that was discovered... ;)
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  • esafosfina

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    It's not what Ferrari thinks.

    And... ahem, Ferrari has been known to be wrong on one or two things matey!!!  ;)
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  • "Sturgess, don't you dare get off that bike" - Sean Kelly, Nokere, 1989.

    Drummer Boy

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    37 bikes in total from multiple teams
    This is bizarre. Regardless of what anyone might think, this is happening. I'm not saying that there are motors in frames, but the UCI is certainly looking for something.

    I would love to know just what they expect to find.

    I've stated this clearly before, but if anyone were ever found to have a motor hidden in a frame, I don't see how anything less than a lifetime bad would be sufficient. And that would include mechanic and DS as well. No way a rider could do this on their own. This would be such a gross distortion of the very nature of "sport"—far beyond, in my opinion, doping—that immediate and permanent expulsion from pro cycling should be mandatory.

    I just can't see how this could be tolerated in any way, shape of form. Could this really be happening?!?!
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    I'm not saying that there are motors in frames, but the UCI is certainly looking for something.

    well motor or not, but we have laughed about the bike changes on the climbing stages for years, didn't we?! Everyone knows there's something odd about it.

    While googling for bike changes I just found this quote by the way  :lol

    Quote
    Contador and team mate Roman Kreuziger launched an attack on the descent of Col de Sarenne but a bike change – after the UCI announced bike weight would be checked at the finish – saw both dropped.

    http://roadcyclinguk.com/racing/reports/tour-de-france-2013-christophe-riblon-conquers-double-ascent-of-alpe-dhuez-to-take-stage-18-victory.html#Yku5F0PYkBt7zvce.97
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  • "If this is cycling, I am a banana"

    Drummer Boy

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    Quote
    a bike change – after the UCI announced bike weight would be checked at the finish – saw both dropped.

    Which begs the question: Why in the world would the UCI announce that?

    (Unless they didn't want to catch a certain someone.  :-x)
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  • Drummer Boy

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    well motor or not, but we have laughed about the bike changes on the climbing stages for years, didn't we?!

    Remember Floyd's inexplicable bike change on Stage 17? He pulled over to the side of the road, tossed his bike to the side, and casually got a another one from his team car.

    Now...I'm not suggesting that BMC stood for Best Motorized Cycle, but I don't ever recall an explanation being offered as to why he changed bikes when he did.
    :slow

    [I'll dig up the time stamp for the video from that stage where this happened]

    [Edit]
    Not the clip I was looking for, but @3:30 you'll see the change.


    The full coverage only seems to be on the DVD (which I own), as this bike change (and the curious commentary from P&P) took place prior to what was broadcast on TV. At least that's what I surmise from the video clips I could find.
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  • « Last Edit: March 23, 2015, 02:31 by Drummer Boy »

    Joelsim

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    They probably don't work anyway. They have used motorised bikes in The Keirin for years and they never win.
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  • Joelsim

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    And its all very well doing 37 bikes at the end of a one day race but how could they check them in the middle of a big stage race? Logistically impossible.
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  • DB-Coop

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    I have my doubts that this is happening, mainly because the bike sponsor or component sponsor have to be in on it. Imagine if Caught no one would ever buy said brands again.
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  • neppe

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    Quote
    Bjørn Sætre says that NCF has been informed that the International Cycling Union are now looking at rules for finding possible sanctions if someone is caught. One of the opportunities they are looking at is to ban bicycle factories involved in fraud.

    http://www.tv2.no/a/6630862 tv2.no 28 Feb 2015

    Quote
    The Commission was told of varying efforts to cheat the technical rules, including using motors in frames. This particular issue was taken seriously, especially by top riders, and was not dismissed as being isolated. (p. 85 CIRC report)
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  • neppe

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    According to a journalist on Twitter UCI checked all Etixx bikes at the start too. Are all bikes routinely checked at start, or are usually only some random checks carried out?
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  • Jamsque

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    Bike checks have been standard since long before all of this hidden motor nonsense. There are rules about weight and frame geometry that are enforced by random spot checks.
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  • Drummer Boy

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    UCI check 36 Milan-San Remo bikes for motors

    Quote
    CN understands that 11 Trek bikes from the Trek Factory Racing team, 11 Specialized bikes from Etixx-Quick Step and 11 Specialized bikes from Tinkoff-Saxo were checked by the UCI in a special tent erected in the bus parking area. The bikes of the three podium finishers: John Degenkolb (Giant), Alexander Kristoff (Canyon) and Michael Matthews (Scott) were also checked in the podium area.

    Quote
    According to Gazzetta dello Sport, six police officers and an investigating magistrate were also present to investigate possible sporting fraud, which is a crime in Italy.
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  • Drummer Boy

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    I have my doubts that this is happening, mainly because the bike sponsor or component sponsor have to be in on it.

    Perché ?
    ¿Por qué?
    Waarom?

    I don't see how they would have anything to do with it. Certainly any such mechanical doping would be done after-the-fact. Once a team has their equipment supplied to them, how would the original manufacturer have anything to do with it? This, to me, is similar a baseball player "corking" their bat—something that would take place long after it left the factory, and not something that the factory would even be privy to.

    I have no idea if any of this is going on or not (and I'm hardly convinced that it is), but I find it utterly fascinating that the UCI apparently has some grave concerns about it.
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  • LukasCPH

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    I have no idea if any of this is going on or not (and I'm hardly convinced that it is), but I find it utterly fascinating that the UCI apparently has some grave concerns about it.
    I think that the UCI is making such a public and visible boo-ha of it because it's
    1) something mentioned in the CIRC report
    2) easy to appear as if they're doing something about it, even if there's no substance to it.

    "Look, we're checking for motors in bikes!"
    Takes off a bit of steam. Time will tell if they're doing anything to address the more serious issues, or if this is just a publicity show.
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  • DB-Coop

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    I think that the UCI is making such a public and visible boo-ha of it because it's

    3: Mentioned in CIRC that 4 teams are cheating, would be nice to catch them all.

    ¿Por qué?

    This is a more complex operation than corking a bat, I think it has to be specially made, unless you want it to get spotted by the UCI at least.
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  • Drummer Boy

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    2) easy to appear as if they're doing something about it, even if there's no substance to it.
    But even easier to appear completely and totally foolish in the process, no?

    Not that I have much faith in the brain trust at the UCI, but why potentially embarrass themselves to such a degree, and in such a conspicuous manner? Sure they are easier ways to do that already?!  :P

    But why involve the police,  and why create the perhaps-unecessary intrusion on the teams (and their already over-worked mechanics!) over something so possibly ludicrous?
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  • Drummer Boy

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    This is a more complex operation than corking a bat, I think it has to be specially made, unless you want it to get spotted by the UCI at least.

    Of that, I have no doubt. But made by the very same manufacturers that are selling cycling equipment to a mass-market worldwide?

    That would be the last place I'd look to be the source of such a covert device.
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  • DB-Coop

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    Of that, I have no doubt. But made by the very same manufacturers that are selling cycling equipment to a mass-market worldwide?

    That would be the last place I'd look to be the source of such a covert device.

    But you can say the same for the DS's, if a team is caught, the bike brand will be ruined and said DS will never run another team, why not just encourage doping and insist that the riders organized it themselves when a few is eventually caught?
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  • Drummer Boy

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    the bike brand will be ruined

    I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree on this then.

    If a team were to modify a frame, or any other component, so that it gave them an illegal advantage, I wouldn't put any of that blame on the original manufacturer, nor would it influence my opinion of any manufacturer.

    To me it would be like blaming the bottle company because someone spiked their drink. I just don't see the correlation.
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