The stock camshaft for the Ford and Mercury Flathead V8 is a mild unit, built for lugging up hills, tooling around town and giving adequate performance when required. The camshaft is the heart of the engine, its job is to open the valves at the correct time allowing fuel-air mixture to enter the combustion chamber and do its work. The longer the valve stays open, the more fuel that gets into the chamber, the bigger the bang that follows.
It looks to have leaked.
It is a brochodilator and used in common anti-asthma treatments like Ventolin puffers. No Therapeutic Use Exemption TUE is required for small inhaled doses but the UCI requires one for larger doses or if it is to be consumed by other means, like tablet form.
It is considered a stimulant in small doses and can have an anabolic, muscle-building effect in larger doses an online search will bring up stories of bodybuilders injecting it and can be a masking agent too.
The World Anti-Doping Agency sets a threshold for inhaled doses of salbutamol and the test results in urine and this is important to note. Then it is up to the rider in a pharmacokinetic PK study to prove — prove — that they took less than the maximum permitted dose and that this dosage still generated the high score.
A PK test sees Froome administered permitted doses of salbutamol and his urine samples analysed to measure the quantity excreted. This aspect of proof is interesting. This chart shows the effects of taking three inhalations of Ventolin — the black arrows — over time.
This research is from the Swiss anti-doping research laboratory and shows spikes in salbutamol levels following administration of a therapeutic dosage but the case it cites shows the athlete could not reproduce the high score detected in competition, even if the lab tests still rate high: Another test took 32 athletes, administered permitted doses, made them exercise until dehydration and 20 exceeded the limit.
The takeaway here is that Salbutamol is not a binary matter like, say, a speed limit for motorists where you are either travelling above the limit for the road or below it.
Interestingly studies warn using salbutamol is playing with fire because even permitted doses can fall foul and therefore given this is known the use needs to be minimised.
None of this exonerates Froome, indeed quite how Froome scored double the permitted level. His lawyer argued a crash on Stage 11 had caused his levels to jump up and he got a nine month ban, down from the two year tariff Alexandr Pliuschin got a nine month ban in Norwegian cross country skier Martin Johnsrud Sundby was cleared by skiing governing body but WADA appealed and he got a two month ban.
Based on the the public precedents there is a trend where even if athletes are deemed not to have committed a fault they still have a price to pay here; in part to prevent egregious cases of salbutamol abuse.
Assuming Team Sky have the medical records and the UCI could revisit urine samples for salbutamol concentration. Because salbutamol is a Specified Substance. Something has happened to make it leak out now perhaps simply because the circle of people involved grew large.
The open nature of the specific rules on salbutamol mean this is not an open and shut case. Amalgamating the precedent cases it does look like athletes have been exonerated of deliberate doping but exceeding the threshold still results in a ban.
But if Team Sky can come up with convincing notes from the Vuelta detailing his treatment and if a PK test can prove Froome has an unusual metabolism then he could be cleared in full. Conclusion The leak is unusual and remember this is an ongoing case rather than a verdict.
Because salbutamol is involved this is not a binary matter of toxicology, where the discovery of a banned substance in a urine sample equates to an automatic ban. Instead the rules allow therapeutic doses and the subsequent the test allows for a certain amount in the samples.
Studies show that Salbutamol to spike in urine samples beyond the WADA threshold but these relate to others not Froome and merely suggest possibility rather than probability.Kinesis is the market-leader in computer ergonomics and has been designing premium keyboards for more than 25 years.
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Sean, You’ve left a lot of great information here for other readers, and you’re right, sleep is very important. As far as supplementing before sleep, I’ll leave that up to the scientists.