By Katharina Schulz
The organisation of Denmark's most important cycling race, the Tour of Denmark, has decided to take a leaf out of the Tour of Germany's book and announced that last year's winner Ivan Basso will not be welcome for the race in 2007.
Just as the Tour of Germany 2007 will take place without Jan Ullrich or Ivan Basso if they still are under suspicion of doping, the Tour of Denmark does not want Basso to start despite his popularity. But race organiser Jesper Worre, who is also chairman for Denmark's Cycling Union (DCU), is even more adamant.
"Basso's not welcome, and neither do we want Discovery to take part if they pursue this policy. Discovery has gotten themselves quite a number of minus points for signing Basso while he still is under suspicion. The fact alone that DS Bruyneel says they have four lawyers looking at things shows that he is in doubt. And if you are in doubt, let it be," said Worre.
Worre also does not want Tinkoff or LPR to take part in the Tour of Denmark. Both teams have signed riders who are involved in doping cases. Tinkoff have taken on board Tyler Hamilton who was banned for two years for blood doping, and also have been alleged to be negotiating with Ullrich, whereas LPR have taken on Jose Gutierrez, who has also come under suspicion during Operación Puerto.
"They have asked nicely if they can take part, but they got 'no' as an answer. We will not have a team who has a rider who to all appearances is involved in the doping case Fuentes," Worre told Danish news agency Ritzau.