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Big names at Vienna blood bank?

By:
Antonio J. Salmerón
Published:
January 16, 2008, 0:00 GMT,
Updated:
April 20, 2009, 21:11 BST
Edition:
First Edition Cycling News, January 16, 2008

A blood bank in Vienna, Austria, is the newest source of a blood-doping scandal, and its customers...

A blood bank in Vienna, Austria, is the newest source of a blood-doping scandal, and its customers are said to include Georg Totschnig, Dennis Menchov, Michael Boogerd and Michael Rasmussen, according to German ARD television. The broadcaster also said that two-thirds of the blood bank's 30 athletic customers come from Germany and include cross-country skiers and biathletes.

"As we have not been informed formally about this matter, I cannot therefore say a lot," said acting Rabobank sporting director Henri van der Aat. "There are always a lot of rumours floating about and cycling foremost among them. We are always watchful of our riders' blood and everything was always in order."

Totschnig rode for the German teams Telekom and Gerolsteiner before retiring in 2006. He won a stage in the 2005 Tour de France. "This hits me really hard," Gerolsteiner Team Manager Hans-Michael Holczer told spiegel.de. "It is the first time that someone who has ridden for us has been so strongly incriminated. I hope that Georg actively cooperates to clear this matter up."

"I don't know any details," Totschnig told kurier.at, denied the allegations. "I was never there and I also don't know where these charges come from. I don't know where the information comes from and what their source is."

Lothar Baumgartner, the medical director of the firm 'Humanplasma', also denied the charges, saying: "I don't know anything about this."

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