And now Vaughters

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Anther former US Postal rider admits to using performance enhancing drugs. I respect Mr. Vaughters very much for what he has accomplished as a cyclist and later as a team director. I also respect him for writing this article. It could not have been easy for him to do so.

People who end up living their dreams are not those who are lucky and gifted, but those who are stubborn, resolute and willing to sacrifice. Now, imagine you’ve paid the dues, you’ve done the work, you’ve got the talent, and your resolve is solid as concrete. At that point, the dream is 98 percent complete but there is that last little bit you need to become great.

THEN, just short of finally living your childhood dream, you are told, either straight out or implicitly, by some coaches, mentors, even the boss, that you aren’t going to make it, unless you cheat. Unless you choose to dope. Doping can be that last 2 percent. It would keep your dream alive, at least in the eyes of those who couldn’t see your heart. However, you’d have to lie. Lie to your mother, your friends, your fans. Lie to the world. This has been the harsh reality laid out before many of the most talented, hardest working and biggest dreaming athletes.

How much does that last 2 percent really matter? In elite athletics, 2 percent of time or power or strength is an eternity. It is the difference in time between running 100 meters in 9.8 seconds and 10 seconds. In swimming it’s between first and ninth place in the 100-meter breaststroke. And in the Tour de France, 2 percent is the difference between first and 100th place in overall time.

In life, we must all face our demons. And now Mr. Vaughters will face his.

(Note: I would be remiss if I didn’t include a link to this transcript of a instant message exchance between Frankie Andreu (FDREU) and Jonathan Vaughters (Cyclevaughters) from July 26, 2005: We have all known for years what was going on. And, I must mention that Mr. Andreu (and his wife Betsy) took a lot of shit for speaking the truth. It undoubtedly hurt his career. History will be kind to Andreu.)

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About big jonny

The man, the legend. The guy who started it all back in the Year of Our Lord Beer, 2000, with a couple of pages worth of idiotic ranting hardcoded on some random porn site that would host anything you uploaded, a book called HTML for Dummies (which was completely appropriate), a bad attitude (which hasn’t much changed), and a Dell desktop running Win95 with 64 mgs of ram and a six gig hard drive. Those were the days. Then he went to law school. Go figure. Flagstaff, Arizona, USA

33 Replies to “And now Vaughters”

  1. While I appreciate what Vaughters wrote, I can’t help but thinking about, why now? Why is he sorry now? Why wasn’t he sorry when he was on the juice back in the day? It kind of comes down for me that these guys are never ever sorry when they’re doping, but they’re sure as hell sorry when either they get busted, or something from their past is revealed. Have we ever had someone come out and say, point blank, “I was doping. It was wrong. I am retiring.” without getting caught first?

    If so, I’ve never seen it.

    I have been thinking too of the other riders that these assholes, yes, assholes, took opportunities away from because they were on the good shit, and they got to go pro, while some others who were just as talented, but wouldn’t take the shit, were left back in America riding shitty crits in the middle of business parks in Buttfucksylvania.

    I do agree, history will be very very kind to Frankie. He and his wife took a big risk, and I’m sure it cost him many things over the years, and indirectly, it cost the teams he has managed over the years as well, like getting no invites to the biggest races in the US because he told the truth.

  2. …jonathon vaughters theme song should be sinatra’s (& sid vicious’) “i did it my way”

    …great call to face it head on whilst still heavily involved in the sport, mr vaughters…

    …& pat mcquaid is proving to be the biggest no balls, lance armstrong’s cocksucker imaginable…

  3. See, he didn’t face it head on. He is only facing it now, multiple years after not being a bike racer any longer.

  4. I’m shocked you guys assumed he was clean to begin with. If he wasn’t so “brave” you’d be calling him a hypocrite.

  5. he is obviously front running the upcoming USADA shitstorm.

    I don’t think it took guts to write this piece, it took the same self-preservation instinct that compelled him to play with the hot sauce back in the day.

  6. another piece of shit justifying his pathetic existence and how he had to do it…fuck him and his horse.

  7. “Almost every athlete I’ve met who has doped will say they did it only because they wanted a level playing field. That says something: everyone wants a fair chance, not more.”

    He is in the running to be as big a loser as LA

  8. Vaughters has been pretty open about his transgressions for years. He admitted making “mistakes” not long after he quit. For those of us who followed his career in Europe, it was apparent that he retired early, and we could guess why. The same probably applied to Kevin Livingston. Vaughters has not laid out the timeline of his doping, but I would guess it started after he joined the Postal Service team.

  9. @bgw: That McQuaid creep got to hand out the Olympic mtb medals. That sucked.
    The sauce is the sauce, this will all come outeventually. Dopestrong too.

  10. Vaughters admitted years ago to doping. He is just being more specific and more insightful as to how it starts and progresses now.

  11. There are two kinds of pros:

    1-Dopers that have been caught.
    2-Dopers that have not.

  12. …i’m in agreement with greg & motown motor & i’d suggest vaugthers hands on approach to building a dope free team from the ground up after retiring early, was as ‘head on’ & as positive a statement as one could make after having “…lived the life…”

    …beyond that, i can only hope the self righteous, overzealous slamdance some of you guys perform regarding this situation means you’ve unequivocably held yourself to the highest possible standard imaginable in every aspect of your personal lives & therefore, i thank you for making this a better world…

    …just sayin’…

  13. …african single…at least the racing was pretty damn great, ya ???…i enjoyed that & fortunately missed mcsleazeball handing out medals on the podium…

    …at one point with burry coming on, i was thinking you & hurben would get a chance to celebrate but that lead trio was not to be denied…

  14. …oh, & props to kabush & wellsey…those two norte americanos were 8th n’ 10th respectively & had some serious years on summa those kids…

  15. The more ex-riders who come out with these “revelations” the better, but can’t help agreeing with Barry’s post.

  16. winning the olympics clean… like Vino?
    A younger generation must be overflowing with hope.

  17. While I could do without the silly geek hipster or whatever the hell it is persona that he fronts, give vaughters credit for tring to make the sport better for those who follow. Certainly a more commendable approach than the one taken by that arrogant ___hole from texas. The only thing worse than being subjected to one his piss poor “i’ve been tested more than anyone in history” vomits is being out on a ride and seeing one of his minions stuffing themselves into one of those stupid mellow yellow kits

  18. Do I think the peloton is now clean as Vaughters keeps suggesting?
    Hell No

    Do I believe Vaughters is speaking out of 100% concern for the sport?
    Of course not, he’s probably front running as Barry said.

    Does Vaughters have dopers on his team right now?
    Fuck yeah! This is bike racing, most of them are still doping. they’re just being careful about it.

    Has Vaughters ever been failed a doping test?
    Not that I know of. I’m sure that someone here will correct me if I’m wrong.

    Does his admission of guilt put him in the Andreu/Riis camp or is he just like Lance Fraudstrong?
    This is a trick question. Everyone knows Pharmstrong is the Anti-Christ. JV is a sinner who is asking for forgiveness and we should give him the benefit of the doubt.

    Just one thing Mr. Vaughters, if you cover up drug use on your team or Bullshit us one more time about the clean peloton, I suggest your punishment is to be locked in a room with Juan Pelota and one baseball bat. My money is not on the guy in the ascot.

  19. giantcu92 – I’m fairly certain that Jerome Chiotti won the mountain bike world championship and then a few years later, straight-up admitted to doping to win said championship and renounced his title.

  20. I appreciate including the link to the Vaughters and Andreu IMs. I missed those during the Landis debacle.

    I remember thinking how obvious it was that Andreu seemed genuine. He had everything to lose for coming forward and the retaliation was obvious and immediate. He was fired as lead journalist on OLN, and then later fired from Toyota United.

    It’s all such a mess and it is going to get worse if they convict and strip Armstrong of his records.

  21. +420 #21

    all this stuffz makes my heart heavy……I will just glorify Derby Chicas from now on

  22. So, where’s the Velonews story on this?? Or are they burying it, since only the Euros dope?

    I’ve had my suspicions he was on drugs ever since he started wearing argyle.

  23. …chris…the story was all over & …

    …scroll around both sites & you’ll find it…

    “I’ve had my suspicions he was on drugs ever since he started wearing argyle”…bwahahaha !!!…

    …aside to self…“…velonews ???…people still read that ???…hmmm, okay, interesting…”

  24. Nah, don’t read velonews, just check it for USA-based stories.

    When they don’t even cover the Olympic BMX races, they obviously aren’t a real cycling web site.

  25. I usually stay out of these doping “scandals,” but I too like Frankie— and the sport screwed him for being honest. Blinders on, boys.

  26. I have a magic pill that is garaunteed to grow your brand and make you money… every businesses out there & most of you too, would take that shit in a second and not ask questions.
    So don’t judge them, half of you out there are pop’n pills or mainline’n questionable shit to get your asses off the couch and into your Sunday group rides!! Why? So you can grasp a moment of what these riders earned & lived for years.

  27. …ummm, vlade ???…can we meet kinda on the sly, maybe after midnight behind the ol’ school…

    …i can tell that pill is even gonna make my unit get bigger, too, huh ???…i’m in, fuck the purists…

  28. T. Hamilton’s book is coming out in a month too. Hope he gives us lots of gory details; should be a good old shit-storm. The boys of that era are going to get soiled a bit more I’m guessing.

  29. Seems like all of the admitters are all out of harms way. Post career or already caught and screwed anyway. To me they all seem creepy, not honest and sincere.

  30. I like JV and what he is doing for cleaning up cycling ( as it seems ) but he can kiss my ascot.

    This is a PR move, granted a well timed one. He is not saying this with anything to lose. He is saying this to put another nail in the LA coffin and throw some more kerosene on that fire. you will see more admissions come from riders as the LA case progresses

    Andreau comes out looking good in all this, but in my opinion so does Floyd. If it were not for his scorched earth shit, we would not be here.

    Just like happened for Andreau, when LA goes down in flames, cyling will suffer for the short term and hopefully come out the better.

  31. …consider it from the perspective of a 17, 18 year old american kid maybe 20, 25 years ago…you’re lauded as a top junior here in the states & it gets you a shot at racing in europe, which has been your dream since you first understood that maybe, just maybe, you could make a living racing a bike…

    “…look, kid, let’s be honest…you’re good, in fact back home you’re great – but that ain’t shit over here…you’ll never break into the top ranks on just your god-given talent & determination…you’re gonna be pack fodder – unless you’re willing to take the next step…we have proven training methods & well, we have certain ‘enhancements’ that can help you be the very best…
    …it’s up to you, nobody’s gonna pressure you but we’ve looked at your test results & we think with a little ‘help’, you’ve got the potential to be one of the elite…you’re real close, kid…
    …either way, son, we do need good domestiques too, so it’s your call…”

    …now, i think what might be creepy to a young man, is if you went that route, followed the ‘doctors’ advice, using those enhancements, understanding self preservation by way of that code of omerta’, keeping your mouth shut & lying to your family, your friends & the public for years whilst continuing to have this lauded career…

    …the whole time, people ask you about the ‘doping’ but your career is good so you just keep it to yourself…that would be creepy…

    …so, now, sure there’s a controversy & a scandal & hey, you’re gonna lose some palmares but after living a lie that’s been eating at you for years, getting it off your chest, despite how it looks to others at that point just might be a bit liberating…

    …unless, of course, you’re a sociopath & think by perpetuating the lie, you’re helping to save the world…