Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Prior user Sevilla pinged 6 months for potential masking agent - and other moral dilemmas

Not that I'm against it at all, doping in sport is as legitimate as breaching technical regs in any sport - or in life generally. After all it's as human to lie, cheat and deceive as it is to be decent, sober and honest. What you are doing is running a calculated risk. If it was motor sport we could almost admire the cheats for their cunning - think about a certain famous Aussie racing driver activating his fortuitously aimed engine-bay fire extinguishers just when his turbo-charged engine needed a denser dose of air - and just let it ride. But when we are the engine on top of the machine it becomes somewhat more of a dilemma. Someone could permanently injure their health by that form of cheating. Should that matter to us, or should we just address the inequity in performance enhancement by drugs?

So by enhancing yourself with a product - any product really - then you are taking yourself into ethically interesting territory. It's just a matter of distinction by degree where you personally draw the line. Drugs vary by effect and danger. Altitude training and cryotherapy costs money and isn't available to all. Some bike makers claim weight, stiffness or aerodynamic advantages that aren't available to others. And so on. How you personally address your individual ethical situation is up to you. You can take a stricter or looser approach and balance your risks accordingly.

Now Oscar Sevilla has previous form here but we should forget that and just look at the situation as it stands. He's a good rider, perhaps even a great one, who has taken decisions that have led to various penalties. He's paid the price. And now he's paying again. Is it any different from speeding in your car and paying the fine or accepting the disqualification?   

Sevilla Given Six Month Ban For Hydroxyethyl Starch Positive |
Oscar Sevilla (Gobernacion De Antioquia-Indeportes Antiquia) has been handed a six month suspension by the Spanish Cycling Federation for his Hydroxyethyl Starch (HES) positive that occurred in last year’s Vuelta a Colombia.