With a documentary aired in the program Stade, the cycling world has relived the cyclical sense of inadequacy towards the fight against doping.
In 12 minutes broadcast in France it was presented to the public the research project of Dr. Pierre Sallet, director of the athletes for transparency. During an entire month, the team of Sallet has doped “in small doses” and under medical eight athletes including triathletes French Cédric Fleureton and Guillaume Antonietti. To take part in the project, the 8 athletes have also agreed not to participate in any competition for 2 months following the experiment, so as to allow the body to eliminate all forms of doping.
The study, in addition wanting to contribute to the fight against doping, also aimed to show the fallibility of the system of checks in respect of prohibited substances in sport competitions.
The first phase of the test was aimed at identifying the level of natural threshold of athletes without doping, with a stress test on the ceiling, a simulation of the individual time trial of 14 kilometers, and a further test of the 3,000 meters race (held indoors, in a building to change as little as possible the physical evidence).
On the second day, the team of Sallet continued the experiment with the blood sample, then re-injected in athletes after one month. With this practice, very risky as remind some facts of the sports news, the benefit at the physical level is resulting from an increase in oxygenation in tissues, which in case of intense effort consequently consume a greater amount of oxygen.
The third day the athletes have begun the step of micro-doping itself, with injections of EPO and growth hormones. The minimum dose, for research purposes, is justified with the attempt to remain within the legal levels permits UCI and Wada for the biological passport of the runners. Another prohibited substance, corticosteroids, will be hired by the athletes at the end of the research program.
The first effects
Eight days after the first injection , Fleureton said he “did not feel differences in performance training,” while Antonietti has noticed an improvement in both sports scores, is an alteration also psychological and character found on the working environment.
The 250 ml of blood were re-injected into the athletes 21 days after collection. With the “new blood”, richer in oxygen than the one circulating in the body after a month of training, the performance – normally – increase further.
23 days, finally, the same test registered at the beginning of the experiment were repeated to record any differences. Athlete after athlete, test after test, the results were repeated and overlapping: Watts expressed during the first stage in cycling remained at a high level with a consequent reduction in the time, there was an average improvement of 6 percent on the showdown and a positive increase of 2.3 percent in the time trial, while in trying to run indoor improvements are recorded on average tati 2.8 percent. With a unique case of improvement on staff 30/2.
The same Sallet took part in the project as an athlete and shown at the end of the test, and at the level of the biological passport, treatment of micro-doses of doping (that have been scientifically proven to help sport), if followed with perseverance and attention, remains below the threshold authorized by the UCI and Wada for competitions. The result shown by Sallet, therefore, shows that – by today’s standards – a clean passport not necessarily binds to a clean athlete.
Athletes as Pierre Rolland of Europcar and Arnaud Démare of Fdj respectively commented on their Twitter profiles: “A report disheartening and disconcerting, the biological passport is useless and unusable! Good “and” Do not forget that the fight against doping must be all around the world!
The response of Wada is not long in coming: Monday, the Director General of the said in the official statement that “the study does not respect carefully the guidelines of Biological Passport, and for this reason its relevance for Abp it is not entirely clear. In order to comment before a study is important that the results be rigorously reviewed and published. This has not happened with the study in question. Furthermore, the WADA has never suggested to the athletes taking part in a study as human guinea pigs in what subjects the taking of performance-enhancing drugs. ”