The Italian Continental team Amore e Vita McDonald's expressed interest in 2006 Giro winner Ivan Basso, now under investigation for his alleged involvement with Operación Puerto. Should Basso resolve his current legal troubles and position before CONI, he may find a place back in the peloton with a new team.
Polish Amore & Vita-McDonald team leader Ivano Fanini said to tuttobiciweb, "If Basso clarifies his situation with government lawyers and co-operates with CONI, we could imagine engaging him."
Signing someone like Basso would require the European continental team to have a much larger budget, but this is not a show-stopper as Fanini has already created the necessary financial framework.
"Naturally having Basso would blow up our budget," said Fanini. "That should, however, be no problem. I can count on financial support from main sponsor McDonald's."
Former Discovery racer Basso testified in front of Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) anti-doping prosecutors Wednesday, and after two hours, the hearing was "adjourned" for the time being. The Italian cyclist from Varese appeared in Rome to answer to questions of alleged involvement with Doctor Eufemiano Fuentes. The recently re-opened case was originally opened last year and shelved two months later, in October.