Tour de France winner Chris Froome of Team Sky is about to see the release of more of his personal training data. Only this time it will be against his will.
Thieves in South Africa apparently broke into his childhood home in Nairobi and stole two years of training data from when Froome was 9 and 1o years old. The invaluable physiological information has been sold to noted anti-doping crusader Antoine Yayer and may see publication in a matter of days.
Team boss David Brailsford was quick to denounce the unlawful release of the confidential information. “This has nothing to do with Froomey’s time on Alpe d’Huez. He was a just a boy riding his bike up and down the local hills and writing down his heart rates. It’s rubbish.”
Nevertheless, Yayer, who routinely questions the wattages and power to weight rations of the top grand tour riders, has other ideas. “I matched his climbing times at age ten, estimated his weight and then ran a computational, reverse matrix analysis, and I find the numbers disturbing.”
Even before publication, Froome’s heart rate data for his boyhood years is already drawing a surprisingly critical reaction. Former King of the Mountains and French cycling legend Laurent Jalabert said his sneak-peek at the data from age 10 was “beyond the realm of belief” and “almost surreal.” Jalabert went on to say that he personally knows at least a half dozen ten year olds and “None of them could ever come close to these physiological markers.”
Former US Postal rider Cedric Vasseur was also suspicious of Froome’s early heart rate values. “Look at the discrepancies between age ten and age eleven. That is just not a year of growth. It was hors normal,” said Vasseur, himself a target for doping allegations as a member of Lance Armstrong’s Tour squad. “I don’t know the roads around Nairobi — was he riding a mountain bike, a road bike, I can’t be sure but I am sure this is, as we say in French, tres fishy.”
Reached for comment, Froome became to laugh hysterically, to the point where his wife Michelle was forced to call an ambulance. He is now resting comfortable after the pure comedic absurdity of the situation wore off.
Yayer however remains unconvinced. “I am always unconvinced. How else would I ever get myself quoted in the media. I stir up trouble with outlandish claims based on farcical science,” admitted Yayer. “But who cares? It’s not my reputation that takes a hit.”