Friday, December 18, 2009

Richard Gasquet - "I kissed a girl who had 'crack' on her lips and that's why I tested positive!"

Jessica Hardy got a 2-year suspension for what was determined to be an inadvertent exposure to a performance enhancing drug used for those who have asthma-related issues. She was given a 2-year suspension reduced to one-year with more ongoing politics to be determined.

Perhaps Hardy should have said her inadvertent drug exposure came from kissing a boy with asthma? Tennis player, Richard Gasquet, said something along those lines.

Tennis player, Gasquet, served a 2-month suspension using the old "I didn't take cocaine, I just kissed that girl who had 'crack' on her lips" defense.

The appeals tribunal agreed and let him take two months off instead of two-years.

ABC News has the details:


Ultimately, I guess it all comes down to your definition of cheating or more likely the economic consequences of denying an athlete that makes a governing body "mad" money. When Paul Biedermann spanked Michael Phelps at 2009 FINA World Championships in a fully approved FINA swimsuit, Bob Bowman was disgusted and verbally degraded Biedermann's accomplishment and then threatened FINA like Hollywood movie star agent threatening a major studio. He got his way too.

Amy Shipley quoted Bowman on the Reach for the Wall swim site:

“They can probably expect Michael not to swim until [the rule changes are] implemented,” Bowman said. “I’m done with this. This has to be implemented immediately. The sport is in shambles right now, and they’re going to lose the guy that fills these seats.

“They’ve lost the history of the sport,” Bowman said. “Does a 10-year-old boy in Baltimore want to break Paul Biedermann’s record?”


Do you see how special interests and money are involved here? If the athlete can be exploited for major "phat" bank, punishments are mild and passive. Read that as Richard Gasquet, Manny Ramirez of the Los Angeles Dodgers, and many other high profile athletes. However, if they are a "Jessica hardy"type then it becomes a show trial.

I think the thought process goes like this: "Who is Jessica Hardy, will she effect the ratings if we erased her? How about that Michael Phelps, if he keeps losing or refuses to race, will the FINA World Championships have fewer syndication sales?"

Since there is no "prince" or "princess" to ascend the throne once Phelps retires, I predict that is when tech-suits will return and they will return. Cesar Cielo just made that a reality with a 20.91 50-meter free WR. If they don't return, that record is standing for another 1/2 century.

Teammate, John Q !. sent me this story.


Amanda said...

Sorry, but your second point does not logically follow from the first. Bowman's little outburst has nothing to with the argument you're trying to make. The difference in treatment here arguably has more to do with the sports involved than with the athletes. Gasquet was let off lightly. Not surprising considering that Agassi tested positive years ago, gave some bullshit excuse, and was never suspended or banned at all. He admitted it less than two months ago.

Tony Austin said...

I don't doubt or disagree with you that I failed to tie the two together effectively. (Writing issues on my end - I am sketchy writer. I wish I could write as good as I draw.), but they do tie together.

I think it is all about the talent and not the sport.

Those that are great at what they do or are able to generate a "critical mass" worth of income, like any Russian female tennis player, seemingly get more accommodating rules, or in Bob Bowman's case, demand immediate rule changes"or else!"

Agassi is a disgrace, but I am lovin' Gasquet excuse! "Yeah, baby, sweetest lips I ever kissed, My bad!"

Anonymous said...

I don't believe Hardy - at all. I think she deliberately and knowingly cheated.

Tony Austin said...

I don't believe Gasquet - at all. But don't you think they should both be held to the same punishment standard? At least a year or two off?

Anonymous said...

In theory, but tennis is different with different governing bodies. side word - I need to research how cocaine would improve performance - clenbuterol has obvious benefits (I have no idea why cannabis is a PED).

Greg Rusedski tested positive for nandrolone but got off - unbelievable. Hardly any tennis players get caught out, yet it's obvious, in my opinion, that some have been doing PEDs (Nadal, Murray).

Tony Austin said...

Different governing bodies, yes. However, the lesser punishment from one NGB to another coincides with the amount of money the athletes make.

Bill Ireland said...

They actually did some tests and found that Gasquet's defense, which I laughed at when I read it also, was plausible. The residue from kissing a crack-user can make you test positive. He had a range of negative tests before and after that should have been positive if he had been a user.

Tennis actually got it right with him.

A more interesting subject of discussion is Dara Torres' connection to a Canadian doctor who had HGH seized--same doctor to whom Tiger has been linked. I don't know if that has significance or not--but its surprising and a little concerning.

Tony Austin said...

Seriously? Wow, crack must be so refined and compressed that it almost sounds like poppy seed bread.

Tony Austin said...

Oh, As for Dara, the HGH is was busted for is not on the WADA list, USADA wanted it on the list but would not accept it.

I presume her innocent unless the doctor becomes a witness against her and he is proved in court to be a credible witness.