- Article published:
- September 21, 2007, 1:00 BST
- Mark Zalewski, North American Editor
By Mark Zalewski, North American Editor The long awaited decision is in, and Floyd Landis has lost...
By Mark Zalewski, North American Editor
The long awaited decision is in, and Floyd Landis has lost his appeal to the American Arbitration Association to overturn the sanction for his positive drug test from the 2006 Tour de France. The three member arbitration panel, led by president Patrice Brunet along with Christopher Campbell and Richard McLaren, was split 2-1 in the guilty verdict, with Campbell dissenting.
The decision will likely have some instant effects, with the ASO champing at the bit to remove Landis as the 2006 winner. The next possible steps in the case involve either Landis accepting his sanction from USADA or appealing the decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland – with the second much more likely.
Landis is still weighing his legal options, but released a statement calling the decision "a blow to athletes and cyclists everywhere." The statement continued, "For the Panel to find in favor of USADA when, with respect to so many issues, USADA did not manage to prove even the most basic parts of their case shows that this system is fundamentally flawed. I am innocent, and we proved I am innocent."
UCI president Pat McQuaid spoke with Cyclingnews about the decision Thursday afternoon, confirming that the ban had been handed down. "It is true, we have been in contact with USADA and others about it," McQuaid said. "We can confirm that Pereiro will be the winner of the 2006 Tour de France, and that Floyd Landis will get a two year ban." According to the USADA judgement, Landis' suspension will run from 30th January 2007. The panel rejected the submission that it should begin from the 5th August 2006, the day on which he was fired from his Phonak team.
Campbell's dissenting opinion was expected, as he was...