Troubles in Cycling Paradise
The computer hacking in cycling has become an epidemic.
Seriously, what's the deal with the hacking stories in the cycling world? Sure, you might get the occasional Facebook or Twitter account violation. But all that requires is sending out an embarrassing, "Sorry I clicked on the Miley Cyrus link and downloaded a virus. I'm changing my password now." message and moving on with your social media life. But breaking into people's e-mails and computer systems? That's just plain wrong!
Our first computer hacking victim was none other than Astana's Alexandre Vinokourov. As reported by Velonation, he noticed the security of his email inbox had been compromised. While no information was reported to have been stolen it shook up the Kazakhstan rider as he might be taking a run at politics in his homeland. Take a moment and let that settle into your brain - Vinokourov is named as a candidate for their parliament. I had a Herman Cain moment when I heard that.
CNN calls Cain fearless and savvy. Vino could be called the same thing. His attacks in the 2010 Tour de France were savage and made his then teammate Alberto Contador wonder if he was having flashbacks to when he and Lance Armstrong were battling for Tour de France yellow in 2009. CNN also opines that Cain was deeply flawed and self-absorbed. Vinokourov has been found positive for EPO and never fully admitted it. When he crashed out of this year's Tour de France he said he retired. Then months later retracted that statement and said he was returning to the professional peloton. However, the team had moved on and bolstered their roster to the UCI limit of 28. Vino's return from retirement put the Astana squad at 29 - one rider too many. So who was made the sacrificial goat - Roman Kireyev who retired with a "back injury." It was never said that a life as a professional athlete was easy.
Vinokourov claims he's going to retire from the sport following the 2012 London Olympic Games, undoubtedly trying to end his career on a high note with a gold in the time trial. Unfortunately Herman Cain can't hope for the same as his political ambitions have ended among allegations of sexual harassment and infidelity. It was never said that life as a politician was easy.
The other recent computer hacking was the crashing of the NYVelocity site. While not known worldwide, this New York based site has posted some amazing interviews such as Paul Kimmage's interview of Floyd Landis as well as Dr. Michael Ashenden (helped develop a test for EPO) who claimed that Lance Armstrong, in his opinion, doped in the 1999 Tour de France.
Coincidentally, the NYvelocity site shuddered to a halt after an article was posted on Cyclingnews about Landis appearing at a fundraiser NYvelocity sponsored, Drink Floyd - a night of roller racing with the funds raised going to support a local junior team. What dark forces could be behind this? I'll be honest - I have no idea. I'm hoping those who committed this crime are brought to justice, but I'm afraid