What are the updates on the suspended riders? I've got answers and a few guesses.
not sure if Dave knows the cultural significance of that phrase or if he just thought it was funny. Either way he must have thought it was appropriate to wear it considering his six-month suspension.
Tom Danielson has been keeping busy leading various charity rides in his home state of Colorado, USA. The USA Pro Cycling Challenge stage winner also has a core workout book hitting the shelves early next year. He’s also put his focus on a training camp in Malibu with actor Patrick Dempsey. If you have to ask how much it costs to spend a week in Malibu at an exclusive resort with a famous actor, you can’t afford it.
I haven’t heard much from Christian Vande Velde since he got suspended. In fact I’d forgotten about him until a buddy asked if I knew anything about what he is currently up to. And maybe that’s how Christian wants it to be. He, like Zabriskie, made a guest appearance at Hincapie’s gran fondo, but turned around very early in the ride and jumped into a car. I was told the reason for his departure was he had an early flight out of town.
Dave, Tom and Christian will serve out their suspensions and return to the Garmin-Sharp fold with the three being certainly named on the short-list for the team’s 2013 Tour de France squad. I really don’t see a lot of blowback onto those three. They’ve made a public contrition and are moving on with their careers.
The last I heard about Levi Leipheimer he was still looking for a contract for 2013 and was being mum on how the search is going. His documentary, “The Levi Effect” was on the big screen and will be available for purchase in late January. In the flick he briefly discusses his doping admission as the news was just released while the documentary was in post-production. Not a lot has changed since then anyways. Of course his gran fondo in Santa Rosa, California is attracting huge numbers and I don’t expect that to change at all.
I’m not sure what will happen to Leipheimer. In a video interview with Eldon Nelson, AKA Fat Cyclist, Leipheimer said he still had a couple of good years left in the tank. Jonathan Vaughters was asked if he considered hiring Levi and he answered he thought the three-time Tour of California champion had maybe one-year left in him, so he was going to hire from within his U-23 squad, which has just folded.
My gut says a team is willing to take a chance on Leipheimer. Will it be a WorldTour squad or something domestic I don’t know. Levi can still win America’s grand tours (Tour of Utah, Colorado, California) so maybe a well-funded US-based squad could pick him up? It would be a matter of whether Leipheimer wants to take a step down from the WorldTour.
Finally we get to the rider people always ask about – Lance Armstrong. We all know he can’t admit to doping as he has given sworn testimony and