Johan Bruyneel will not be present at a hearing at Belgian Cycling Federation headquarters on Tuesday to discuss the allegations outlined against him in the US Anti-Doping Agency’s report on the systematic doping system in place at Lance Armstrong’s former US Postal Service team.
Het Laatste Nieuws reported two weeks ago that Bruyneel was ready to cooperate with a Belgian federation inquiry on the matter but the RLVB said on Monday that the former US Postal and RadioShack manager had intimated that he would not be present at the Brussels hearing. Bruyneel, who faces a possible life ban, has previously said that he would continue to contest USADA’s charges.
“Mr. Johan Bruyneel has let it be known that he will not be able to be present at the hearing planned for tomorrow at the RLBV federal building, to which he was invited by the federal prosecutor,” read an RLVB statement. “The federal prosecutor will proceed with the inquiry and he will decide what further steps should be taken.”
Bruyneel was manager of the US Postal Service squad and is mentioned repeatedly in USADA’s dossier on the doping culture in place on the team. A nine-page section titled “Johan Bruyneel’s involvement in doping” includes rigorous detail of the Belgian’s organisation of the doping programme at the team and states: “The overwhelming evidence in this case is that Johan Bruyneel was intimately involved in all significant details of the US Postal team’s doping program […] He was on top of the details for organising blood transfusion programs before the major Tours, and he knew when athletes needed to take EPO to regenerate their blood supply after extracting blood.”
Bruyneel went on to manage the RadioShack team, for whom Armstrong rode in 2010 and early 2011, but the team parted company with him in October, shortly after the publication of USADA’s Reasoned Decision on the Armstrong case. In a recent television interview with Oprah Winfrey, Armstrong confessed to doping to win his each of his seven Tours de France, which were rescinded in October.