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Who is the Anonymous Postie?

Frankie Andreu and an unnamed ex-Postie admitted their EPO use to the New York Times. While most people are focusing on the larger implications of this news on the sport, I really just want to know who the second guy is. I know trying to "out" people is kind of impolite, but eh...

Anyway, here's the 1999 Postal TdF Roster, complete with odds and scouting report:

ARMSTRONG, Lance (USA). 0:1. With millions (and I mean millions) of dollars on the line, Lance isn't going to rat himself out. The Texan is so stubborn that even if he did take drugs way back when, he'd have no problem convincing himself now that he was clean all along.

ANDREU, Frankie (USA). 1:1. Good on you for coming clean. But the time to do it was in 1999.

DERAME, Pascal (FRA). 100:1. Would the Times be able to track down an old French cyclist? Or, conversely, would an old French cyclist be able to speak to the Times? I mean, this was all I could find on Derame - and it describes Tyler Hamilton as "not really [a] climber".

HAMILTON, Tyler (USA). 1,000,000,000:1. Tyler continues to swear on the grave of his dog that he would never endanger his wife's life by doping.

HINCAPIE, George (USA). 50:1. Though the anonymous rider has a "job in cycling", I have a hard time believing an active cyclist would confess, seeing as the always-progressive WADA punishes an unsolicited confession like a positive test. George has always been very close to Lance, around for all seven Tour wins, and pretty consistent with his peformances (his climbing improved through the years, but gradually).

LIVINGSTON, Kevin (USA). 3:1. Here's my favorite - former Lance friend, split for more money at Telekom, rattled oddly between pack fodder and top-flite mountain domestique, quit cycling after something of a burn out, but is still involved with the sport. Lance claimed to have squashed any beef between them over beers in It's Not About the Bike, but I think it's no coincedence Livingston's always in his Telekom kit in promotional photos.

MEINERT-NIELSEN, Peter (DEN). 75:1. Same problems here as Derame, though I knock Meinert-Nielsens odds down because he's continued to be involved in cycling. Also, as a Northern European, he's more likely to speak English, but I still don't see an NYT reporter being aware that he exists.

VANDEVELDE, Christian (USA). 25:1. Again, I think it's unlikely an active rider would confess, though CVV gets tighter odds for being a candid diarist. In a sport as tight-lipped and constricted as Lance Armstrong's War portrays, a willingness and a desire to share your life with other people certainly stands out. Though it's no guarantee of a willingness to confess, both admitted/reformed doper David Millar and Andreu himself kept diaries at some point.

VAUGHTERS, Jonathan (USA). 5:1. If there's anyone whose cycling job won't let him admit doping, it's JV. Vaughters also allegedly discussed doping regimens with Andreu on the internet, and as his presence at TIAA-CREF indicates, he's deeply invested in the future of the sport (a motivating factor for Andreu's admission). But JV has gone on record as saying he saw no dope evidence at Postal (though this bit hardly resounds with confidence), and at any rate, Vaughters' naturally-high hematocrit would severely limit his gains from EPO use.

So that's how I see it. Smart money's on the recent American retirees, while CVV's the Dark Horse. If your name's Homer Simpson and you're looking for a Merry Christmas, place your bets on the Euros, and if you own the track and are looking to launder some cash, Tyler Hamilton's the man for you.

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