February 4, 2015 § 66 Comments
The Facebag almost broke on Monday when someone posted a photo of the results in the 50+ masters race at the Red Trolley Crit. There atop the leaderboard sat Richard Meeker, returned from a 2-year doping ban and picking up where he left off: Making fools of the best old fart racers in the state, make that the nation, make that the world.
According to eyewitness accounts, Meeker the Beaker a/k/a Loose Leaf Powder a/k/a Mr. Kleen rabbit-punched breakaway companions Mark Hoffenberg and Thurlow Rogers with a finishing sprint so vicious that all they could do was loll their tongues and do the Harpooned Whale Bellyroll of Death as Sir Toxic blew across the line in a blur.
None of this should have been surprising. Rich doped (to no one’s surprise), was busted (to everyone’s surprise), mounted a pathetic tainted supplement defense (to everyone’s undying hilarity), and has now returned with a vengeance, which he will be serving up nice and cold. If you plan on racing in the 50+ category in SoCal this year, and you’re super fit and super fast and super good, I hope you like the sound of “second place,” because whether it’s a time trial, a hill climb, a crit, or a rolling, windy course, the unrepentant, proud owner of a two-year doping ban is going to stomp your nuts.
‘Cuz you know, when it comes to bike racing, Rich Meeker does it all.
What was surprising, nay, astounding, is that the Beaker signed up for the race under the banner of Surf City Cyclery. This is surprising because according to at least one rider, he wasn’t even on the team.
Despite strenuous politicking to be allowed to join, the members reportedly held a ballot and emphatically voted not to let Sir Toxic on the team. No matter to Rich, though. Despite the vote reportedly taking place a month ago, which means he would have been well aware that he wasn’t on the team, he is listed on his 2015 license as a Surf City rider, and he apparently rode the race in a Surf City club kit that’s for sale to the general public. After this horrendous wardrobe malfunction, I heard that he received a call from management and was told to cease and desist.
It will be entertaining to see whether he continues to show up claiming to ride for Surf City and whether he changes his license. Alternately, it will be fun to see which team he rides for next and to hear the pathetic excuses that people give for allowing this unrepentant leper to ride on their team. The fact that he still maintains his innocence and refuses to admit to wrongdoing puts him on a lower level than Lance & Co., who at least admitted what they’d done and are now suffering the consequences, however mild they may be.
As far as I’m concerned, I could care less whether the guy races, although there’s no shortage of people who wish he’d find a different sport to cheat at. He’s done his time, and the rules say that he’s allowed to return to the fray. It was heartening to see people on Facebag comment that the real first and second in that race were Hoffenberg and Thurlow, and it’s encouraging that there are teams who refuse to be associated with him. Perhaps his strategy of throwing Hammer Nutrition under the bus is making teams and sponsors and potential teammates wonder who he’ll point the finger at the next time USADA rolls into town.
But of course we always save the best for last. Rich and his wife have opened an organic drink bar in Corona del Mar, catering to the beautiful set’s desire for healthful, tasty nutrition. The name?
Some shit you just can’t make up.
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He has the requisite SYRINGE next to his profile on Road Results
That’s so cute!
Saw those results, and was wondering what in Sam Hill were the Surf city dudes thinking? Thanks for the gossip!
It is the equivalent of jumping in a fun ride, wolfing down at all the rest stops, and finishing with brats and beer at the “free” food tent. What do you call it?….”Hijacking” or something like that?
I had some experience with this back in ’84 when a former NatChamp who was NOT on our team started using the team affiliation to get lower entry fees (not ‘unattached’, see?). There is no reason to earn the enmity of fellow racers by wearing the kit now, unless your assholeness has had two years to develop fully (thass wine talk for “aging”). so why not just wear an unprinted, unadorned kit? What should the other Surf City guys do? …put him in the curb…he’ll get the hint.
Now, since the membership to that club is ‘open’, and since the kits are available online, and since he may have paid $$ to join the club, there may be NO possible way to prevent him from wearing the kit…just sayin’.
You’re the legal eagle, Wanky, you should pontificate on that angle!
I should have said his assholeness had two years to “develop fully in the bottle” but then, why kick a good man when he is on the way up?
Exactly. Now is the time to start humbly blogging about forgiveness, dues paying, he’s served his sentence, everyone deserves a bunch of second chances, all his natural talent, what a nice guy he is off the bike, and his cat.
I noticed that he has signed up for the BWR but has no club listed next to his name, so maybe he got the message.
This is where I begin to wonder how interested the money people (ex. Spy guy) are in a clean-like sport. If I were running BWR, there’s no way I’d take Meeker’s money. Call it the Socal Get a Life rule.
I’m not running BWR, I have no aspirations to even consider doing BWR, so yes, this is me behind my keyboard throwing out an opinion. It just seems to me it sends a pretty bad message.
I don’t care what he rides or races, although for sanctioned events it would be nice to see him with the Pros.
interesting as SCC has welcomed a ‘big cat’ doper before….
Admitting what you’ve done and apologizing is the first step …
Masters racing in Southern California is THE BEST. The story lines are fantastic. I can’t wait to see how this plays out. What if he rode in a Sejuiced kit and consistently stomped d’s every weekend? What if he created a mega-masters-post-dopers-team-par-excellence that hit the top races across the nation? Sejuiced p/b Ride Clean? I think so.
Nah, Sejuiced p/b Dopers Suck. That’s the ticket.
I totally agree with MattSmith1405 – SoCal master racing has the best story lines! You just can’t make this shit up! Keep up the good work.
Talk about a running, er, riding joke.
First time I rolled up at a road race in the UK, my “friends” said it would be “fun”. They made me where my jersey inside out as it wasn’t a club Jersey. I guess that’s why they call the USA land of the free. I’m hoping he turns up in a yellow US Postal Jersey, I’ve heard you can pick them up cheap these days…
But not as cheaply as yellow plastic bracelets and copies of Floyd’s “Positively False.”
Nice work Betsy, er uh, Wanky.
That’s Mr. Betsy Wanky to you, pal.
Just a hollow syringe faux pro victory built on natural performance shots and beeting off. Note the innovative subliminal target marketing via the Rock Racing jersey dude.
“Peek” performance… Gotta get me some of that.
Peek and perform. Only takes quarters.
Beeting off … hahahahaha!
If White Powder doesnt race for Surf City, and in fact is unattached, then doesnt he owe the Red Trolly guys a cool $5?
Put it on his tab.
Is racing unattached allowed? Way back in the day it was no big deal.
Meeker is yet another example of the huge joke USAC actually is.
Profamateurs like this need lifetime bans. I don’t normally advocate that, but maybe beyond 40 years old, one sanction and you are done. Especially with the “powder in the bottom of the tin” explanation.
Or just make him race with the P1/2’s, where he can finish mid-pack or OTB no matter what kind of loose leaf powder beet-off juice supplement he’s taking.
I thought you were going to write about a festering saddle boil that keeps coming back after a public lancing.
Batman needs the Joker. Let’s race.
Blogman needs Loose Leaf Powder and his rare gift of unintentional hilarity.
Lot of hate for Meeker, from WM and the posters. If it weren’t for the pesky “rules” which stipulate only 2yr ban, I sense many of you think he should be lifetime banned, and it’s not even a criminal matter in USA.
Do you all feel the same about other transgressions?
Let’s say someone fudges their IRS return and claims a false $100 deduction? Should punishment be mandatory life in prison because the rule wasnt followed?
What about rolling thru a red light at 3 mph? Rules is rules. At least a 30 yr sentence to Pelican Bay, no?
There is a concept called “proportionality”.
And no, I dont know Meeker personally.
I don’t race and I still hate what Meeker did. He took a “sport” and subverted it. He beat a lot of nice guys who worked hard and deserved to win. When he got caught he blamed it on “tainted supplements.” If your rolling stop causes me to get a ticket, if your fudging on your return costs me more money, I’d be upset at you. If my friends got relegated to 2nd and 3rd because a known cheater made a mockery of the race, I’d be mad at him.
The whole thing is funny, in a sad-fucked-up-weird-bike-racing kind of way.
I’m actually fine with a 2-year ban (which he didn’t get). But just because he’s back doesn’t mean we need to be nice and welcoming.
Social shaming is the most cost-effective anti-doping tool there is, in my opinion. I did cringe at Red Trolley listening to Ralph gush over Meeker’s national championships in the middle of his race. Gah.
Yup. If people acknowledge him as “national champion and suspended drug cheat” every time he goes by, the racing thing might wear a little thin. Or not!
Hate? I don’t care where or if he races. He’s done his time and can race … and has done so. Slapping on a team kit from a team that supposedly voted not to have him, and registering under their name is pretty funny, not to mention an drug cheat naming a bar “Sejuiced.”
Fact is, people like you a lot better when you say “I’m sorry.” And “sorry” seems to be the hardest word. For him.
If it weren’t for the idiot USADA lawyers who bungled the case in the arbitration, Peeker would still be looking at two more years.
I’m not sure bungling is the right word. It’s not quite the system you’ve been lead to believe.
The arbitration lawyers flip from working on panels and with athletes to working for sports federations. It’s kind of a closed loop where the loudest talker is the federation’s money because they do the most hiring.
Lots of opportunities to game arbitration by the IOC sports federations.
Bungle in the Jungle!
The USADA lawyers presented no evidence, none, to carry their burden of proof on the enhanced punishment/ban. All they had to do is present an expert (i.e., anyone with a pulse) to testify as to how ridiculously stupid Peeker’s “loose powder” at the bottom of a Hammer Endurolite bottle was. Instead, the lawyers argued that Peeker’s excuse was stupid. Well, guess what, lawyers’ arguments aren’t evidence. Any lawyer worth his/her salt knows that, if you have the burden of proof, you have to produce some evidence/testimony. The USADA lawyers missed that whole semester in law school called Evidence.
And they proved they were worth their salt. About one box’s worth, which is going for about $1.19 at Von’s.
As a once or twice a year racer, I have wondered what I’d do if/when he showed up at the same race. Initially I thought I’d just pull out, but since it might be my only race of the year that seemed unlikely.
For the every week racer, I think this is a much more workable solution… how many promoters want a field with 1 guy in it?
It’s just messed up, sucks the fun out of what should be a good time.
While advocating for a Cat D, I think your solution of banished to P12 is right on.
Thanks for the depressing investigative reporting… glad I won’t have to deal with this for another year.
I’d never pull out.
A 50+ doper. How pathetic. You think he’s still clean or just better at masking?
I dunno. Anyone who toys with Hoffenberg and Thurlow is obviously eating his Wheaties.
He should just start a new TEAM and call it ‘I juiced” . How fitting would that be?
I like “Team Kleen.”
….and here I’m thinking that after reading the subject title that this blog was about me. Time to now go start up the 67 Camaro and run some kid over and then revive him
with some Sa-Juicey.
Are you sure it isn’t a ’62? 1862, I mean.
I guess when I first read about Meeker and his Beaker, was when I first became aware of Citsb. That was only a year ago, so I must have been directed to an old post.
Well I suppose I owe to Mr Beaker the year of reading pleasure a $1.99 can buy each month.
Make that $2.99. And thanks!
Yeah, that’s what I meant. Still a bargain @50% more than I thought was shelling out!!
Mr. Loose Leaf Powder is probably really happy to have provided so much joy to the world.
The fallout is so many things…..taking results from people who truly put in the effort and ride clean; the putrid karma of cheating and that shit just floats in the air, doesn’t it?; the ‘lever effect’ where people the cheater beats are so frustrated at their results that they jump down that same stinkhole as one more victim; the stories the young riders hear about dope and how it is the magic “go-fast” pill that “real pros” use, which seduces immature and susceptible minds; and the physical toll that unsupervised doping takes on the body…including death.
It is a smelly shithole that has to have punishment…real punishment like prison (for fraud), ostracization by peers, significant suspensions, lifetime bans, etc. The punishment has to be so bad that no-one EVER would want to do it. Period. And, then there is the working on the “Hearts and Minds” thing…that is going on now but might not be enough.
A box van parked near the Finish with signage noting Doping Control might have an entertaining effect.
“Nah, I decided not to race today. Too sunny.”
Seth- great read as always. Meeker did an interview with cycling illustrated a few years ago where he comments on doping and being clean. Effen hilarious!
I know. That one is a classic.
i enjoyed that. this guy sounds like he should be dropping Vino an email…
It’s pretty much the most incredible wardrobe malfunction in SoCal cycling ex-doper history.
Before the year started, he was Ride Leader that left the SCC store. I’m assuming that it was an SCC ride, seeing how it left from the SCC store but it could have been different (check under carriage of bus), hahahahaaa!
What’s all this EPO on my shocks?
Why is surf city so attractive to the dopers? Just saw another syringe on road results for a Kayle Leogrande.
Leogrande’s doping is well documented, and old news. Google it.
While there are some masters I suspect of doping, Kayle isn’t one of them. Essentially because he’s very, very talented, yet not dominant. If he were doping, he’s the type of guy who’d be unbeatable.