Friday, November 13, 2009

The Money Will Roll Right In

It is no longer a rumor, Kenny 'the Cash Register' Williams failed a USA Cycling drug control after setting a World Record at this year's Masters Track Nats. He tested positive for DHEA, an over the counter supplement, the same stuff Tyler Hamilton got busted for this past spring.

Kenny followed his instinct and announced the violation with an apology.

A fixture in the Northwest cycling scene. His nose for cash prizes earned his illustrious nickname. He would often race the Masters' race, scooping up as much cash as possible, and then repeat the process in the 1/2 race. He never had a professional career of note, apparently content to use amateur races to supplement his income, rather than seek out a paid ride. His age defying speed impressed Master's and Elite competitors alike.

He is also a popular coach of northwest based riders. Many successful Seattle and Portland based riders turn to Kenny for training plans and mentoring.

Given his place in cycling, it is extremely naive for Kenny to expect that anyone believe the positive was the result in a one-off dalliance with a single over-the-counter supplement. DHEA is widely used in a variety of supplements. Double blind studies have repeatedly shown that it has zero performance enhancing effects. The most common use of DHEA in competitive athletes? As part of a supplement cocktail intended to maintain hormone levels while cycling off stronger anabolic agents. (Sorry there aren't more authoritative sources on this one, but this is some back room of Gold's Gym, Venice beach bull shit.)

If Kenny recommends DHEA for performance enhancing reasons, it exposes him as an inept, ignorant coach. His services put his clients at the risk of USAC, UCI and WADA drug testing, with no possibility of experiencing any performance benefit.

If Kenny was using DHEA as it is commonly used in athletics, as part of a systematic PED regimen, then he should come clean. Lay it all on the table.

Like most riders, Kenny doesn't seem to be sorry for the results he's stolen from other riders. He's not sorry for the relationships damaged, the respect lost and the damage to the reputation of his clients and friends.

He's sorry he got caught.

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