Talk about celebrity endorsements gone amok. I thought having baseball players with ED, actresses with Osteoporosis, and of course bladder control problems was too much to bear. Now, the ASO is trotting out Bernard Hinault as the endorser of the anti-Operation Puerto movement.
“The riders under suspicion should first take a DNA test, then they can be allowed to start [The Tour de France]. That goes for Ullrich, too.” And also for Ivan Basso? “Naturally. He is equally under suspicion.”
I’m sure Christian Prudhomme and Patrice Clerc, seen below at a recent planning session for the Tour de France, are concerned that the whole furor over Operation Puerto will kick into gear again if Dr. Fuentes trial begins this summer. Having all that dredged up will be made more difficult if “riders under suspicion” are toeing the line in London at the Grand Depart.
Since, no one really cares what Christian Prudhomme and Patrice Clerc think, they are using a famous minion in Bernard Hinualt. Put that with the ASO owned L’Equipe and you have a complete publicity machine that can shape public opinion any way they want.
One word of advice. Keep a tight leash on Hinualt. He has a habit on changing his mind and going back on his word. Ask Greg LeMond.