The stuff's everywhere

Posted by Ryan Jerz on Friday July 28, 2006.

Okay, I’ll admit. It’s not like it hasn’t been in cycling before. (And first things first. Thanks to Dopers Suck, which I was pointed to by a friend who tests athletes for a living, and who I plan on seeing next week. Let me just say that this friend might be the coolest person in the world right now, simply because of the job.) But Floyd Landis testing positive sucks for the US. They’ve always thought we were cheaters here (and we are) but they hadn’t caught the big fish. Well, this is a big fish.

Landis has responded by saying he thinks it’s because he pounded some Jack the night before (I heard him on the radio). I’m not a doctor, but that doesn’t sound bloody likely. From what I’ve read on testosterone, it works like this. You have testosterone and epitestosterone in your body. The typical person (and by typical, it means just about everyone) has a ratio of 1:1 between the two. When testing, they look for a ratio of 4:1 of the respective chemicals. If you hit it, you’re busted. If it’s 3:1, they let you slide because of natural fluctuations (like, if you have an injury, the testosterone level increases to heal). So you can triple your testosterone level and stay legal.

Then comes the BALCO stuff. They developed “The Cream,” which was, well, a cream that raised epitestosterone levels. So you could theoretically increase your testosterone to six times the normal level, then double the epi level, and wind up with a 3:1 ratio, but be juiced to the gills and badass. As far as I know, the epi level doesn’t counter the testosterone level, it’s just that they’re related, therefore making the test possible.

What I’m saying is that if you get caught with way raised testosterone levels, you did it. No way around it. So while Gentleman Jack might have been involved, it’s a tough sell to convince me you’re an innocent man here.

Ryan JerzRyan Jerz is an all-around good guy who wants people to eventually refer to him as "that dude who climbs mountains."

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