Landis to appear at anti-doping conference in Geelong
Deakin University conference to take place before Worlds
Floyd Landis will appear at a conference on doping in professional cycling in Geelong in the week of the world championships. The New Pathways for Professional Cycling conference will be held on September 27 and 28 at Deakin University’s Waterfront Campus in Geelong and Landis will be present to discuss the future of the sport with legal experts, scientists and academics.
“Floyd has asked us if he could take part in the panel discussion and we think his presence will enhance the discussion,” said conference organiser Martin Hardie of Deakin University’s Law School. “The issue we are interested in is how we can build a sustainable basis for cycling in the future – it is clear that the sport cannot continue on in the way it has this year.”
The Australian event will mark one of Landis’ first public discussions of cycling’s doping problems since he appeared on ABC’s Nightline programme in July detailing his allegations of doping in the US Postal Service team. His allegations in May triggered an ongoing US federal investigation led by Jeff Notizky of the Food and Drug Administration.
“Floyd Landis wants to talk about his ideas for the future and the solution – as he said back in May, he wants to be part of the solution, and we are happy to give him a space to open up a conversation about that,” said Hardie.
As well as Landis, a number of other high-profile speakers will be present at the conference. Biological Passport panel member and anti-doping researcher Dr. Michael Ashenden will participate, along with Carlos Arribas, the Spanish journalist instrumental in breaking the story of Operacion Puerto.
Professor Verner Moller, author of Sacrifice, On The Exit of Michael Rasmussen from the Tour de France, Australian cycling historian Keith Mansell and anti-doping expert Dr. Klaas Faber will also present at the conference, while barrister Paul Hayes will deliver a paper entitled “The Olympic Edition Cereal Box: WADA, the IOC and the World Anti-Doping Code.”
The event will also feature the launch of a detailed report entitled “I wish I was Twenty One Today” – Beyond Doping in the Australian Peloton, authored by Martin Hardie and his colleagues David Shilbury, Ianto Ware and Claudio Bozzi.
The wide-ranging report interviews current and former cyclists and addresses some of the most fundamental issues surrounding doping, such as the reasons why it exists and ways in which it can be eradicated. Funded by the Anti-Doping Research Program of the Australian Government’s Department of Health and Ageing, the report also includes an examination of current anti-doping measures and an insight into riders’ attitudes towards doping.
“In the end, the only way for cycling to regain its credibility and come out of its crisis is by dealing with the issues it faces in an open, transparent and impartial manner,” said Hardie. “Part of that process is giving voice to the cyclists – our report seeks to do that and we hope that Floyd’s presence will also enhance that process.”
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Barry Ryan is Head of Features at Cyclingnews. He has covered professional cycling since 2010, reporting from the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and events from Argentina to Japan. His writing has appeared in The Independent, Procycling and Cycling Plus. He is the author of The Ascent: Sean Kelly, Stephen Roche and the Rise of Irish Cycling’s Golden Generation, published by Gill Books.