An article listed on ScienceDaily and cited on PubMed today reports that scientists in Germany are developing a urine test that would be used to detect illicit use of insulin in athletes. Insulin does promote the uptake of carbohydrates into muscle and fat cells, so in theory perhaps this could be an advantage. But then again, in people without diabetes, carbohydrates promote the uptake of carbohydrates by fat and muscle (via normal insulin production). Of course, insulin's role in metabolism is much more complicated than my simple explanation; I still have to wonder what advantage these athletes could possibly be seeking.
A friend once suggested to me that, as a T1, I had an advantage over other athletes in the sense that I was very aware of the state of my body. He may have had a point. For example, after a very intense or long bike ride, I may have to keep eating without insulin or with a greatly reduced dose of insulin for a few hours, or frequently longer. Efforts to keep my blood sugar from falling may help me to regulate the amount of food I need to refuel the glycogen in my muscles. On the other hand, I imagine that normal hunger cues in non-diabetics do a pretty good job at this. And I'd rather be a little less informed on the state of my BG than have to worry about having a low BG during a race. Still, having T1 diabetes helps me to stay motivated with my athletic goals and with other efforts to maintain a healthly lifestyle.