Like so many people, we got caught up in the U.S. cycling craze that started somewhere around the year 2000 with the US Postal team. The Tour De France was must watch TV and we put the riders on very high pedestals. In hindsight, too high, but you couldn’t have convinced us of that when the Blue Train was rolling. When allegations of wrong doing started coming in, to say we didn’t give them a fair hearing was an understatement. We didn’t give them any kind of hearing.
When reporters questioned the association with certain doctors, we said “there’s no proof”. When a former tour champion tried to prove his case by showing the seemingly impossible increases in power output, we pigeon-holed his claims as “sour grapes”. When competitors made similar charges, we classified them as “sore losers”.
Then, when the truth came out, we were absolutely crushed. I mean devastated. There may be five stages of grief, but we only experienced two of them – Anger and Depression. To us, the sport of cycling was dealt a tremendous blow. Now, that’s not to say that we didn’t still love our time on two wheels. Cycling is intrinsically beautiful and when you add in fantastic backdrops and great company, you have something truly magical.
But, in our hearts, the sport lost much of its luster due to the doping scandals. Add to that some of the incidents seen in running and occasionally in triathlon and it seemed that all endurance sports were literally under attack.
However, we (like so many in cycling, running, swimming, and triathlon) are by our nature optimists and we believe that ultimately good (and good people) prevail. That’s why we are so encouraged to learn about something called the Clean Sport Collective.
The collective is an inspiring organization consisting of athletes, brands, events, clubs, and fans that support the pursuit of clean sports by celebrating individuals who “do it the right way.”
It’s not specific to a single sport, there’s no cost to participate, and anyone can join by signing one of nine pledges (they differ by group) that spell out how you (or your organization) will provide support.
Coeur was happy to make a donation to this organization and we are proud to say that we signed the following pledge:
We pledge to support clean sport by sponsoring athletes who are committed to training, racing and living clean, and not sponsoring athletes who have tested positive for performance enhancing drugs. Working with individuals or teams who choose to not play by the rules steals from hard working athletes that chose to do the right thing and challenges the health and integrity of sport. We understand and appreciate our corporate responsibility and through our influence we will create positive change through promoting clean athletes and teams. We pledge to support clean athletes who are leaders of clean sport. We pledge to support clean athletes by investing in who they are and what they represent. We pledge to create positive change by supporting athletes who are committed to clean sport.
We’re confident that our team of Pros and Ambassadors already have this mindset, but we’re going to encourage them to sign and we'd love for you to consider it as well.
Happy Racing and Training,
Your friends at Coeur