Cheating athletes and the fans who love them.

Cheating athletes and the fans who love them.

Cheating athletes and the fans who love them.

Taking stock of people and ideas in the news.
Dec. 10 2004 12:03 PM

Cheating Athletes

Who dopes, why they dope, and who it hurts.

(Continued from Page 2)

There is a downside to testing, of course. Cycling has been in a state of constant scandal since 1998, and it's not clear that it will survive. In its year-end wrap-up, the magazine VeloNews dubbed 2004 the "Year of the Cheat." But that's only half right: It was the year that the cheats got caught, in stunning numbers. And some of them, refreshingly, had the good grace to come clean, à la Nina Kraft, the good German triathlete. Even David Millar, who was stripped of his world title and suspended for two years, seemed relieved to have been caught.

"I have a good lawyer in Paris and I might have got away with it," he said. "But I thought, 'Fuck this. I can't live with this.' "

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Corre ction, Dec. 13, 2004: This article originally stated that Jason Giambi's enhanced performance had won him an $82 million contract with the New York Yankees. The full seven-year contract was for $120 million, $38 million of which has already been paid to Giambi. (Return to corrected sentence.)

Bill Gifford has written for Outside, Wired, Men's Health, and other magazines. He is working on a book about the future of medicine.