I'm not sure how Floyd Landis, in a single swift move, can admit that he's been lying for four years while also expecting us to believe his accusations against Lance Armstrong, Levi Leipheimer, Dave Zabriskie, George Hincapie and Jim Ochowicz. It's staggeringly ballsy. So much so that I question whether or not he's still pumping himself with testosterone. (Floyd's meltdown isn't quite as ballsy, however, as Tyler Hamilton's confession years ago when he claimed to have a parasitic twin that was depositing extra red blood cells into his body, but ballsy nevertheless.)
As Armstrong pointed out Thursday morning, Landis wrote a book hilariously titled Positively False in which spells out in great detail how he wasn't doping. A book-length lie. He also raised a pile of cash from his true-believer fans to support his legal defense and his claim that he won the Tour without doping. He lied to everyone.
And now he's indicting the top names in professional cycling.
Oh, okay, Floyd. We'll believe you again. Because of your stellar record of truth telling.
Who knows. He could be telling the truth about the other riders, though without any credibility whatsoever, it's only reasonable to assume he's engaged in another elaborate ruse to cover his own testosterone-patched ass. Add to the mix a lengthy record of clean drug tests from all of the above riders, and we're supposed to take an admitted liar at his word in spite of it all?
There's no reason why Floyd couldn't have confessed without pointing fingers at other riders. He should have confessed four years ago. If he had, he might be back in Europe competing with the top athletes in the field. Hell, Alexander Vinokourov was booted from the Tour in 2007 for doping and today he's a contender in the Giro d'Italia with his old team. He still denies he was doping, but he didn't go nearly as ballistic as Landis has for the better part of four years. On the opposite end of the spectrum is David Millar who was caught, confessed, served his suspension, regrets his EPO usage and now rides, and wins, for a clean pro tour team. Many cycling fans probably would've accepted a respectable confession and apology from Landis, even after all these years. But his sour grapes flailing -- this baseless attack on other riders makes him look cheap, ridiculous and unworthy of forgiveness.
Meanwhile, there's nothing about Hincapie's, Levi's or Zabriskie's riding style that suggests they're doping. I've never seen any of these guys go out on a super-human attack or mysteriously win a big mountain stage following an epic meltdown the day before. None of the tell-tale signs of doping. They're all very consistent, solid riders with remarkable physical and mental gifts for riding bikes.
These other riders have class. Floyd has inexplicably decided to put his utter absence of veracity up against the classiest, most popular riders in the world today. Good luck with that, Floyd. And in his desperation, he'll further besmirch the reputation of the sport that gave him so much. Smart guy.
Suffice to say, there continues to be doping in professional cycling. There's also doping in, well, practically every sport imaginable -- even golf, for crap sake. The difference is in the policing, and cycling has almost comically stringent doping controls of any professional sport, with anti-doping agents lurking around every corner brandishing specimen jars and big needles. That's not to excuse cycling, I'm simply suggesting that where there's sport, there's cheating. And in the process of weeding out the cheaters, it's probably a good idea to avoid taking seriously the accusations of both a proven cheater and liar.
While I was willing to remain ambivalent about Floyd's guilt, even against my better judgment, I now believe he deserves whatever further repercussions drop into his lap. He, after all, did this to himself.
On last observation. Sarah Palin is probably very jealous of Floyd's grifting superiority.
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