On the back of the physiological testing carried out at the GSK Human Performance Lab in the United Kingdom, Chris Froome has pressed home his belief that he and other riders can win the biggest bike races in the world without the use of performance enhancing drugs.
However, the two-time Tour de France winner acknowledged that, "the deceit of the past still casts its shadow over the present, but my hope is that more transparency like this can be another small step in helping rebuild trust in the sport I love."
Froome released the statement the morning after the results of the physiological testing were released in an article published in Esquire magazine and on Froome’s own website. A fuller scientific report will be released at a later date.
The tests were carried out between the Tour de France and the Vuelta a Espana this year by Dr Jeroen Swart, who, according to Froome and others, is "a well respected sports physician and exercise physiologist".
"The results today hopefully tell their own story," Froome’s statement read.
The article in Esquire also saw the publication of Froome’s 2007 test data. This has given a second reference point in Froome’s testing, while critics have called for more longitudal tests in the future in order to give a fuller picture of Froome’s physiology.
For a breakdown on Froome’s test data, click here.
"The process has also been a bit of a journey of discovery for me," said Froome. "It prompted me to seek out comparative data from tests carried out in Switzerland in 2007 during my time at the UCI World Cycling Centre. I managed to get hold of these figures for the first time in September 2015 and they are published today alongside the Human Performance Lab data for comparison.
"The figures make one thing very clear to me - if I ever needed any reminder. Natural ability is only one piece of the puzzle of what it takes to win an event like the Tour de France. I have always prided myself on my work ethic, dedication and perseverance but without the opportunities and support from Team Sky and Team GB I would not be where I am today.
"Team Sky's belief in my ability, structured coaching and attention to detail have given me the platform to maximise my potential. I am proud to ride for a team that has shown that you can win the biggest bike races in the world clean. I can’t wait to start racing next year, to challenge for a third Tour de France title and, hopefully, to ride for Team GB in Rio 2016."
Froome added a rallying call for others to help in "moving cycling forward", while insisting that he was "committed to playing a leadership role in doing that".
"I am realistic and recognise that these results will not convince everyone," he concluded. "As Michelle and I are expecting our first child any day now, I also hope people understand why I won't be doing any further interviews until the New Year."