Monday, September 20, 2010

Lance Armstrong Investigation: Remember the Actovegin Incident?

Last year, Actovegin (an extract of calf blood) received some press as Tiger Woods was, allegedly, using it along with HGH. Actovegin has been in the news again as NY Daily News is reporting that a Russian cross country skier was found with the substance.

Interestingly, Actovegin has been around for some time. In fact, Lance Armstrong's U.S. Postal team was caught throwing away Actovegin wrappers in 2000 and, the team's manager, later admitted that the team used Actovegin. Of course, he stated that none of the Tour de France riders were using it, even though the team was caught discarding the wrappers in France during the tour. Supposedly, one of the team mechanics was using it for diabetes. After they were accused of this, it took the team a year to come up with this story...Hmmmm...Anyone want to buy some beach front property in Nevada?

One interesting thing about the latest news about Actovegin is what Mr. PED dealer himself, Joe Papp said about it. Papp is the guy who had 184 customers including pro and amateur masters cyclists buying EPO and other PEDs from him (see this prior post for more information). Here are a few quotes from the NY Daily News article that I found of interest:

Papp told Fasterskier that he would doubt anyone using Actovegin wouldn't be dabbling in banned substances like human growth hormone or erythropoietin. 
"If you have the sophistication, the knowledge, the access, the comfort level to inject yourself with an extract of cow's blood," Papp said, "you probably aren't hesitant to use something like EPO or HGH."
I think Papp has a good point here. Who would put an extract of cow's blood into their body?! Only someone who is hungry to win, who wants to win big, and wants to win multiple times would have motivation to do that. In addition, that person would likely want his whole team using Actovegin and any other PED they could get a hold of. 

Afterall, someone once said: "every second counts"...

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