Is French ski mountaineering racer, Patrick Blanc, a dope(r)?
You know the competition is competitive when athletes take drugs and cheat to gain an advantage. Recently, after the famous Patrouille des Glaciers race, 1 of 10 test results for doping have come back positive for one of the members of the winning French team. The name of the individual hasn’t officially been released yet, pending secondary tests, but the rumor mill is already churning about who it might be.
No wonder he crushed me in this year’s 2008 World Ski Mountaineering Championships.
After an investigation done involving multitude organizations in the realm of ski mountaineering racing, a name emerges today of who it might be. Patrick Blanc, the number 2 ranked racer, six time champion of the world and two time winner of the Patrouille des Glaciers.
“Of the three French racers in question, my suspicions surround Patrick Blanc”, a Swiss athlete confide in a telephone interview. “This is an athlete who is able to peak like no other.”
During the 2008 World Championship Vertical Race, in Châtel, last February, this racer finished in a very average 9th pace, a 2’10” behind winner, Florrent Perrier. Two weeks later, during a nearly identical race organized by the French , Patrick Blanc beat Florent Perrier by around fifteen seconds. His total gain of 2’20” in a 35′ race was frightening!
“When I saw the stopwatch, I thought it was crazy” says an anonymous speaker. “To increase your result by more than 2 minutes during a 35 minute race is abnormal. I have very little doubt of who it is”
(Translated from French. I think it is close.)
Excerpt taken from an article in Le Nouvelliste. Additional information on SkiMo.org.
If you speak French, here is an interview with Patrick Blanc on YouTube. Not about the doping (I think) and kinda cheesy at times, but a good time waster non-the-less.
It’s hard to take any high level racing seriously anymore. Hardly worth watching without a high level of cynicism.
It would be nice if you could blog about your (legal) supplement and fueling strategies, for short day, long day, and multiday trips. I have been experimenting with various levels of success and it would be nice to hear what others do.
No real suprise I guess. A few years ago, at a slide show, I asked Andrew McClean about doping in Skimo. His opinion was that it was too far on the fringe (money wise) to be worth it. I guess not.
That’s the great thing about mtn biking in the US at least …… to loosely quote Adam Craig after his National Championship win last year ,”no amount of dope is going to help you descend over roots and mud faster ………”
Enjoy the weekend.
steve, i knew it all along and i believe it. i was at this hut for a week near mont blanc skiing stuff and i became friends with the people who run the place, french people. the woman is a marathon runner who takes care of the place. we watched a video on some skimo race (pierra menta i think is how u spell it)and she was yelling cheat cheat to some of the women on the video who she races against her, she looked up the translation and kept saying cheat cheat to all the racers and showing me that they shoot up drugs pointing a fake needle to her arm. i was pretty bumbed because i spent a shit ton of money to race against almost all cheaters. i could have saved that money for another trip or something. well it was fun and it sucks to hear this news, hopefully drugs will get out of the sport, peace steve