Monday, 21 July 2014

Daily Cycling Facts 21.07.2014

Stefan Schumacher
Stefan Schumacher
Born in Ostfildern-Ruit on this day in 1981, the German rider Stefan Schumacher has achieved many very good results during his ten years as a professional - but has also been connected to doping numerous times. He began with Telekom in 2002 and remained there for two years but didn't perform well, leading the team to drop him; then he moved on to Lamonta and won a handful of criteriums, a stage at the Bayern Rundfahrt and silver in the National Championships. This earned him a contract with Shimano-Memory Corp for 2005, the year he won Stages 1, 2, 3 and 4 at the Rheinland-Pfalz Rundfahrt. He also fell foul of an anti-doping test for the first time that year, testing positive for the stimulant cathine.

An investigation could find no reason to disagree with Schumacher's explanation that the drug had entered his system via an asthma medicine prescribed to him by his mother, a fully and officially registered physician. She had checked the WADA banned drugs list and the medicine was not on it; he was cleared. All well and good: it appeared justice had been done and a hole in the regulations that might lead to future injustice was closed up. However, two years later he was stopped by police, breathalysed and found to be over the limit for alcohol; he was, therefore, arrested and subjected to a blood test (to confirm the breathalyser result) - and it proved positive for amphetamines. Since amphetamines' physical effects are short-lived, positive out-of-competition tests no longer resulted in an automatic ban; this time the rider claimed he had no idea at all how the drug might have got into his body, once again he escaped punishment and remained with the Gerolsteiner team.

In 2007, Schumacher recorded abnormal blood values (indication of a red blood cell-boosting drug such as EPO or an illegal blood transfusion). In October 2008, news reports emerged claiming that Schumacher had tested positive for CERA, an EPO-variant, at the Tour de France. This time, there was no way out: early in 2009, he was banned from competition for two years. A few months later it was revealed that he had also tested positive for the same drug at the Olympics - he still denies that he is a doper, but dropped his appeal against the ban in April 2010, at which point he had three months until the backdated ban expired.

Schumacher returned to cycling with the Continental-class Miche team and stayed with them until the end of 2011; in 2012 he switched to Christina Watches-Onfone and won the Tour ta'Malta and Serbian Kroz Srbiju, then remained with them in 2013 and won a stage at the Tour of Algeria and another at Romania's Sibiu Tour.

Francis Moreau
Francis Moreau finished in second place at the GP des Nations in 1994. That same year he was 113th at the Tour de France - his father died during Stage 9, but had left a specific order that his son should not abandon.

Hendrikus Johannes Maria Stamsnijder, born in Enter in the Netherlands on this day in 1954 and known as Hennie, is a retired road and cyclo cross rider who won the Superprestige in 1983, 1984, 1987 and 1989 - a record until Sven Nys' fifth victory in 2005 (Nys has since won six more times). Hennie retired from competition in 1989 to care for his sick son Tom; Tom is now a professional rider himself and has ridden five Grand Tours.

Anthony Malarczyk, born in Newport, Wales on this day in 1975, has assembled an impressive palmares in road cycling and mountain biking including third place in the 2000 Manx Trophy, top ten finishes in the National Time Trial Championships and victory in the Masters age group at the National Mountain Bike Championships. In 2003 he was awarded compensation after an incident during a training ride in 2000 when a driver overtook him, dragged him from his bike and assaulted him.

Cyclists born today: Bert de Waele (Belgium, 1975); Suchha Singh (India, 1933); Viktor Logunov (USSR, 1944); Charles Schlee (born Denmark, took US nationality, 1873); Charles Delaporte (France, 1880); Fabrice Colas (France, 1964); Juan Diego Ramírez (Colombia, 1971); Petar Georgiev (Bulgaria, 1929); Oswald Rathmann (Germany, 1891); Boris Dimitrov (Bulgaria, 1912); Ortwin Czarnowski (Germany, 1940); Colin Davidson (Canada, 1969); Kurt Nemetz (Austria, 1926); Georges Wambst (France, 1902, died 1988).

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