Ugh...sad what money can do. Yes, a problem of the system. Any ideas on what can be done to make the system better?
Kacper Szczepaniak Attempts Suicide
Kacper Szczepaniak, the young Polish rider who placed second in the U23 World Championships in Tabor and subsequently tested positive for EPO, tried to kill himself. His brother Pawel, who won the event and also tested positive for EPO, confirmed the news and reported to Belgian publication Het Laatste Nieuws that it was their father who intervened.
Hans Van Kasteren, the manager of the Telenet-Fidea squad for which Kasper rides, claims to have two sources that point at the brothers’ Polish coach for encouraging them to dope. “We never approve of doping, but can understand how the boys were tempted,” Van Kasteren told Het Laatste Nieuws. “Their father earns just 250 euros per month, while Kacper with a world-caliber team could easily clear 2500 euros.”
The Szczepaniak brothers dominated the U23 World Championship race, in Tabor, Czech Republic, with Pawel (20) claiming the title in front of Kacper (19). Frenchman Arnaud Jouffroy finished third, with Belgian Tom Meeusen in fourth. Last week, the UCI released positive doping results for EPO for both brothers. Pending the results of their B samples, the brothers will be stripped of their results and face suspensions and disciplinary action.
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How sad. Sure big money is on the line, but these are just kids and at the mercy of managers and coaches. I saw a comment by Adam Myerson that was right on the money. This didn't happen in a vacuum, and they didn't do this on their own. If the coach is proven to be the one who pushed the dope on them he should he should be prosecuted and do serious jail time because now it's more than just cheating in a bike race, it's almost murder. But who knows what the Europeans will do. The whole story is just so shameful and sad it could break your heart - and you can't forget all the other young men in that race that were robbed as well.
Clearly these are two young men who need help. Someone please give them the attention and help they need so they can grow up to be successful, healthy, ethical competitors.