MONTEREY, CA (BRAIN) — John Frothingham, USADA’s chief operating officer, had no surprises to rouse a lethargic after-lunch seminar dubbed “Clean Cycling: Suppliers and Sport Working Together.”
However, there was no discussion or comments on the industry’s role in doping and what the industry could or should do to help control the problem.
Nonetheless, there has been a win-at-all-cost culture in all sports that raises significant ethical issues as well, he said.
But in a question and answer session following his talk to Bicycle Leadership Conference attendees, Stan Day, SRAM’s CEO, asked Frothingham to put cycling’s drug issue in context with other sports, noting that cycling appears to “beat itself up” far more than other sports.
Frothingham offered a brief answer pointing out that professional sports like baseball, basketball and football are generally less than enthusiastic about testing programs and player organizations can further complicate creating new testing regimens.
But in terms of Olympic sports, like cycling, testing programs are far more effective than in the professional sphere, said Frothingham, who joined USADA in 2008.
Overall, Frothingham outlined the agency’s structure, its goals and how its testing programs have evolved over time.
As the anti-doping agency’s chief operating officer, Frothingham manages athlete education and test planning as well as sample collection and information technology. Despite all the gains made in new testing formats, Frothingham said cheating would continue.
“It will always be a cat and mouse game and well-funded athletes can develop sophisticated programs,” he said. However, Frothingham noted that eventually such programs would be uncovered.