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Must Reads: Armstrong in Afghanistan, Argentin turns 50, Nadal says Contador case harms all athletes

  • By Steve Frothingham
  • Published Dec. 17, 2010
  • Updated Dec. 26, 2010 at 6:54 PM EST
Lance Armstrong, Robin Williams in Afghanistan

Robin Williams and Lance Armstrong. AFP PHOTO/BEHROUZ MEHRI

U.S. Army: Lance Armstrong in Afghanistan

On Wednesday the Tour champ and comedians Lewis Black and Kathleen Madigan visited Forward Operating Base Fenty, located just outside of Jalalabad in eastern Afghanistan. Armstrong had a chance to fire a M4, AK-47 and MK48 weapons. “It was intense,” said an excited Armstrong … “I don’t do a lot of that. It’s pretty crazy … a lot of power.”

La Gazzetta dello Sport: Argentin, at 50, rates current stars

The print edition of La Gazzetta touches base with Italian legend Moreno Argentin on his 50th birthday. Argentin, who won the world road championships in Colorado Springs in 1986, and won Liege-Bastogne-Liege four times, rates the current stars of the sport. “With radios now, racers are moved as if by a joystick. They can’t move without them.” Alberto Contador: “So calculated … a perfect race car built in the laboratory for the Tour.” Vincenzo Nibali: “He is the hope of future. I love him for his simplicity and because he never races on the defensive.”

Associated Press: Rafael Nadal says Contador case harms all sport

Spanish tennis star Rafael Nadal says he hopes Alberto Contador’s case will be decided soon because it cause “tremendous damage” to all sports. In a Spanish radio interview picked up by the AP, the world’s top ranked player says the constant flow of doping cases “casts doubt over other athletes.”

Der Spiegel: Doping investigator says amateurs are biggest market

The German magazine talks to Austria’s Andreas Holzer, one of Europe’s leading doping investigators, who says health clubs are the biggest source of performance enhancing drugs in Europe. “I don’t want to lump everything together, but the focus is on health clubs and shops where nutritional supplements are sold. In many of these shops, we have been able to seize bags full of anabolic steroids, growth hormones and counterfeit Viagra pills. They’re simply kept under the counter.” Holzer also says amateur athletes are the biggest consumers of PEDs: “Top athletes only represent a small slice of a dealer’s customers. They make most of their money off recreational athletes. For example, during our investigation, we encountered amateur athletes who had invested about €7,000 in doping drugs to prepare for a marathon — merely to move up from 1,024th place to 912th place. It’s absurd.”

Must Reads is a new regular feature on VeloNews.com.

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