- Article published:
- June 30, 2008, 0:00 BST
- Mark Zalewski, North American Editor
By Mark Zalewski, North American Editor The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Switzerland...
By Mark Zalewski, North American Editor
The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Switzerland announced today its decision regarding ex-Tour de France winner Floyd Landis vs. US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA). The court ruled against Landis, ending his fight to clear his name and regain his Tour victory. Landis will have to serve the full two-year suspension that is back-dated to January 30, 2007 as that is when he officially declared voluntary non-competition status. Additionally, Landis was ordered to pay $100,000 in costs to the USADA.
In a statement released by the CAS, it found that: "1. The LNDD is a WADA-accredited laboratory which benefits from the presumption that it conducted sample analysis in accordance with international laboratory standards. 2. The athlete has not rebutted this presumption by showing that a departure from the International Standard occurred."
The panel then went on to conclude from the evidence presented that the "presence of exogenous testosterone or its precursors or metabolites in Floyd Landis' sample proved that he violated the anti-doping rules of the UCI [International Cycling Union]."
In response to today's ruling, Landis released a short statement in which he hinted at a desire to continue the legal fight. "I am saddened by today's decision," said Landis. "I am looking into my legal options and deciding on the best way to proceed."
This was Landis' final step in his bid to win back his Tour de France title, though the fight could go on in other legal areas, such as civil suits or an appeal to the Swiss Federal Court. Further, there have been some disputes over when Landis actually began serving his suspension, since he continues to race in non-UCI and non-USAC sanctioned mountain bike events. Landis told Cyclingnews in February that if his suspension date were changed to make his sanction effectively longer, then he would no longer try to return to professional...