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Second Edition Cycling News, Thursday, October 11, 2012

Date published:
October 11, 2012, 1:00 BST
  • Brailsford stunned by USADA disclosures

    Article published:
    October 11, 2012, 10:17 BST
    Cycling News

    Team Sky manager described Barry's doping confession as disappointing

    Dave Brailsford, team principal of Team Sky, claims he was stunned by the revelations contained in the USADA's Reasoned Decision in the Lance Armstrong case, saying cycling had “lost its moral compass.” He also said that he was disappointed that Michael Barry had lied to him about his doping background.

    Barry, who rode for Sky from 2010 through this year, confessed yesterday to having doped up until 2006.  He has already announced his retirement for the end of this season, but has been given a six-month suspension.

    The USADA report was "shocking, it's jaw dropping and it is very unpleasant, it's not very palatable and anybody who says it is would be lying wouldn't they?" Brailsford told BBC Five Live, according to

     "You can see how the sport got lost in itself and got more and more extreme because it  seemed to be systematic and everybody seemed to be doing it at the time - it completely and utterly lost its way and I think it lost its moral compass,” he said.

    "Everybody has re-calibrated and several teams like ourselves are hell-bent on doing it the right way and doing it clean.”

    Brailsford admitted to being disappointed in Barry, who he said lied to him. Whilst at Sky, “we have had absolutely no cause for concern whatsoever, there has never been any question in terms of his performances, his training, his behaviour on the team - there have never been any issues in that respect," Brialsford said.

    "But ultimately he lied and we set out with a zero tolerance policy so we said that anyone who has had a doping conviction...

  • Walsh: USADA decision "convincing and comprehensive"

    Article published:
    October 11, 2012, 11:08 BST
    Daniel Benson

    Challenges Verbruggen and McQuaid to face up to the situation

    David Walsh has reiterated USADA’s words in calling the evidence against Lance Armstrong in relation to his doping case as utterly convincing and comprehensive.

    Walsh, the author of From Lance to Landis and LA Confidential spent the majority of Wednesday evening poring through USADA’s evidence in their case against Armstrong and the US Postal team. For well over a decade Walsh has battled against doping in cycling, challenging authorities to take action and for riders to speak.

    He finally has his wish with USADA's 1,000 page report, 26 sworn testimonies, 11 of which come from Armstrong’s former teammates.

    “It was utterly convincing and very comprehensive,” Walsh told Cyclingnews on Thursday morning.

    Along with the testimonies and affidavits, the report raised questions over the compliance of the sport’s governing body, the UCI, in their handing of the doping situation during the Armstrong era. Tyler Hamilton and Floyd Landis both stated under oath that Lance Armstrong informed them that a positive test for EPO would be covered up, while Jonathan Vaughters recalled a conversation in which Armstrong implied that he had the power to have a test nullified.

    The UCI has constantly stated that they have never covered up a positive test and that their relationship with Armstrong was above board. However their acceptance of financial donations in the fight against doping from Lance Armstrong has raised questions over both the current president Pat McQuaid and the former president [and now honorary president] Hein Verbruggen.

    Verbruggen, 72, went on record last year

  • Belgian Federation forwards Bruyneel charges to federal prosecutor

    Johan Bruyneel faces the media
    Article published:
    October 11, 2012, 12:12 BST
    Cycling News

    Update: prosecutor says RadioShack manager may face lifetime ban

    The Belgian Cycling Federation has forwarded the USADA reasoned decision to federation prosecutors, for further investigation of Johan Bruyneel involvement. The Koninklijke Belgische Wielrijdersbond made the announcement in a short press statement on Thursday morning.

    The Federation, “through the media coverage, has taken note of the USADA report, where the name of Mr. Johan Bruyneel, a licensee of the KBWB, is mentioned.

    “The KBWB has, as statutorily provided, sent the information to federation prosecutor Mr. Jaak Fransen, for further investigation.”

    It added that, “As is usual in doping cases, the federation prosecutor will contact the UCI.”

    The USADA's reasoned decision in the Armstrong case, issued on Wednesday, described Bruyneel as a key player in the organized doping which took place at the US Postal Service and Discovery Channel teams. Bruyneel has constantly denied such charges. Neither he nor his current team, RadioShack-Nissan, has commented on the USADA report.

    The overwhelming evidence in this case is that Johan Bruyneel was intimately involved in all significant details of the U.S. Postal team’s doping program. He alerted the team to the likely presence of testers. He communicated with Dr. Ferrari about his stars’ doping programs,” the document said.

    “He was on top of the details for organizing blood transfusion programs before the major Tours, and he knew when athletes needed to take EPO to regenerate their blood supply after extracting blood. He was present when blood transfusions were given. He even personally provided drugs to the riders on...

  • Italian documents reveal details of Dr Ferrari's doping skills

    Leonardo Bertagnolli (Lampre-ISD) in the time trial.
    Article published:
    October 11, 2012, 13:16 BST
    Stephen Farrand

    Bertagnolli confessed to working with Ferrari while at Liquigas in 2007

    Documents released by USADA reveal the important role of Italian police in the investigation into doping, with Padua-based public prosecutor Benedetto Roberti and his officers uncovering details of the huge financial payments between Lance Armstrong, other riders and Dr Michele Ferrari.

    Police also uncovered evidence of Kevin Livingston's visits to Dr Ferrari and of email exchanges between Armstrong, Johan Bruyneel and Stefano Ferrari – Dr Ferrari's son, who managed the financial and business aspects of his father's activities.

    Some of the most damning Italian evidence against Dr Ferrari comes from a detailed confession by Leonardo Bertagnolli. In a sworn statement, he told police how Ferrari told him to take EPO and how to blood dope, despite him suffering with a thyroid problem.

    Italian police tapped phones and seemed to have planted listening devices on Bertagnolli as he visited Dr Ferrari for tests and doping advice. Bertagnolli rode for Lampre-ISD this year but retired in June after the UCI requested the opening of an anti-doping investigation based on information provided by his biological passport. Following the USADA revelations, Bertagnolli has been summoned for questioning in Rome by the Italian Anti-Doping Procura on October 16. 

    In his statement given to Italian police on May 11, 2011, Bertagnolli said he started working with Dr Ferrari in 2007 after getting permission from Roberto Amadio and Roberto Corsetti – his team manager and team doctor at the Liquigas team at the time. He agreed to pay Ferrari 12,000 Euro a year.

    Pellizotti, Kreuziger, Gasparotto, Chicchi

    Bertagnolli claimed in his statement that Dr Ferrari explained how to avoid testing positive for EPO by taking micro...

  • We didn't know about Leipheimer case when he signed, claims Lefevere

    Levi Leipheimer (Omega Pharma-Quickstep) in Colorado
    Article published:
    October 11, 2012, 17:15 BST
    Barry Ryan

    Omega Pharma-QuickStep awaits UCI's stance on six-month ban

    Levi Leipheimer's future at Omega Pharma-QuickStep remains clouded after the American accepted a six-month ban from USADA following his confession to doping between 1999 and 2007.

    Speaking at the Tour of Beijing on Wednesday, manager Patrick Lefevere told Cyclingnews that he would wait for the UCI to ratify the ban before making a definitive decision on Leipheimer's position. In the meantime, Leipheimer has been placed on non-active status by the team.

    Leipheimer was one of six former US Postal riders – along with Tom Danielson, Christian Vande Velde, George Hincapie, David Zabriskie and Michael Barry – to be handed a suspension on Wednesday after he provided testimony to USADA on doping practices within the team as part of the agency's case against Lance Armstrong.

    Although Leipheimer was strongly rumoured to have testified to before a grand jury regarding his doping practices during the federal investigation into the US Postal team in 2010, Lefevere claimed that he was not aware of the rider's doping past when he signed him from RadioShack ahead of the 2012 season.

    "This is a case from a long time ago, before he was with us. When he signed we didn't know it. That's already a fault of him," Lefevere said. "The first rule of our internal rules is ‘I will never be involved in doping and I was never involved in doping'.

    "The first time I heard about it was the day before the...

  • Yates denies seeing anything 'dodgy' at Discovery Channel in 2005

    Sean Yates of Team Sky at the start
    Article published:
    October 11, 2012, 18:30 BST
    Cycling News

    Team Sky directeur sportif says he is disappointed after USADA report

    Sean Yates has claimed he did not notice anything "dodgy" going on at the Discovery Channel team in 2005, when Lance Armstrong won his seventh Tour de France.

    Yates, who raced with Armstrong at Motorola between August 1992 and 1996, was a directeur sportif at the team between 2005 and 2009. He then joined Team Sky and was directeur sportif this summer when Bradley Wiggins won the Tour de France.

    The USADA Reasoned Decision documents claim that Armstrong and several of his Discovery Channel teammates were doping in 2005 and during the Tour de France.

    “USADA has direct evidence, including admissions to, and eyewitness testimony from, his teammate George Hincapie that Armstrong was blood doping in 2005,” the report reads. “Hincapie has testified that, “[f]rom my conversations with Lance Armstrong and experiences with Lance and the team I am aware that Lance used blood transfusions from 2001 through 2005.”

    “His testimony is corroborated by Levi Leipheimer who testified that in 2006 or 2007, long before any USADA investigation had occurred, that George Hincapie told Leipheimer that Armstrong had “only used a single bag of blood during [the 2005] Tour.”

    Yates told BBC radio: “It's all pretty damning for Lance and the whole history of his seven Tour wins and beyond. My opinion is one of disappointment and slightly upset, really,"

    He said he was shocked at "the depth of the whole system, as it’s been called. I worked with Lance but never had any inclination this type of practice was going on. It is disappointing."

    Yates claimed that his role was just to...

  • Verbruggen on Armstrong: We did not hide anything, ever

    Hein Verbruggen (file photo) Photo: © Mark Gunter
    Article published:
    October 11, 2012, 19:22 BST
    Cycling News

    Denies saying Armstrong never doped

    Former UCI president Hein Verbruggen who, it has now become clear from USADA's comprehensive documentation of the Lance Armstrong case, presided over the darkest era of sophisticated doping in the history of sport, has reacted to the file by claiming the UCI "could have done nothing, and did not hide anything" about the systematic, highly orchestrated doping programme taking place in the US Postal Service and Discovery Channel teams.

    Speaking to RMC Sport on Thursday, Verbruggen, who was president throughout Armstrong's Tour de France domination, said he is "pleased that USADA's report said that we never put things under the table," Verbruggen said. "This is very important."

    He also denies uttering the words reported on Cyclingnews and in the USADA reasoned decision: "I repeat again: Lance Armstrong
    has never used doping. Never, never, never

    [The original report came from the Dutch news outlet - his exact words were, "Lance Armstrong heeft nooit doping gebruikt. Nooit, nooit, nooit."]

    While the USADA report does not accuse the UCI of covering up doping explicitly, it does state [on page 161 of the reasoned decision] that these comments by current UCI president Pat McQuaid and Verbruggen show that they had pre-judged the verdict on Armstrong before ever seeing the USADA dossier of evidence.

    Additionally, it says the UCI chose to

  • USA Cycling to enforce USADA's suspensions of former Armstrong teammates

    George Hincapie (US Postal) leads team captain Lance Armstrong during the 2002 Tour de France.
    Article published:
    October 11, 2012, 20:08 BST
    Cycling News

    USA Cycling's Steve Johnson encouraged about sport's future

    USA Cycling announced today that it will enforce the six-month suspensions levied by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) against five U.S. riders - Tom Danielson, George Hincapie, Levi Leipheimer, Christian Vande Velde and David Zabriskie - who all were former teammates of Lance Armstrong and provided testimony in USADA's investigation of doping practices carried out by Armstrong and the US Postal Service team. Additionally, USA Cycling is currently reviewing the impact of the sanctions on the riders' historical results.

    "I am glad to see the release of the Reasoned Decision by USADA and the official announcement of the sanctions accepted by the riders who participated in the investigation," said USA Cycling President and CEO Steve Johnson in a statement. "More importantly, I would like to personally acknowledge the extraordinary courage of these riders who placed their careers on the line in order to come forward with their experiences of past doping practices.

    "While this is an extremely difficult time for the sport, I believe that riders of today understand that doping is intolerable, that it will be discovered, and that a decision to engage in doping in any form is senseless. As a result, I am greatly encouraged that the culture of professional...