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Damsgaard can't rule out doping at CSC in 2007 Tour de France

By:
Cycling News
Published:
February 09, 2013, 11:49 GMT,
Updated:
February 09, 2013, 11:39 GMT
Edition:
Second Edition Cycling News, Saturday, February 9, 2013
Dr. Rasmus Damsgaard

Dr. Rasmus Damsgaard

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Anti-doping expert says small amount of doping possible despite tests

Rasmus Damsgaard, who ran the Team CSC/Saxo Bank anti doping programme for many years, has said that it was possible that team riders used doping at the 2007 Tour de France, despite his testing and the team's internal anti-doping scheme. But it would have been only minimal amounts which would not have affected performance, he said.

“I never could and still cannot guarantee that CSC's anti-doping program would find riders who really wanted to cheat,” he told sporten.dk. “But I can guarantee that it was the best anti-doping program in the world at that time and if some of the riders cheated, then it had to be with such small quantities that the effect of their cheating on performance was highly questionable.”

He acknowledged that any of the riders at the time he was testing them could still have been working with Fuentes, Ferrari or any other persona organizing a doping plan. “Of course it is (possible). Just as it is today, and we also speculate that it is being done among some who have the skills and money to it.”

“We tested as accurately as we could, but there are certain limitations to everything,” Damsgaard noted. But there was an expectation that the doping would be “big time, and we did not find anything big time.”

Damsgaard had worked with the team for several years, but the relationship was intensified after the 2006 Tour de France and Operacion Puerto. Ivan Basso, who was at the time the CSC captain, was named as a client of Dr. Eufemiano Fuentes and was removed from the Tour squad the day before the race started.The team ended its association with Damsgaard in 2009 after the introduction of the biological passport.

Damsgaard told the Danish newspaper that anti-doping efforts in cycling have become more effective “because we have introduced the biological passport. It does not guarantee that there will be no cheating, but the limits which must be kept in order not to be discovered, have become so narrow that it is almost not worth it.”

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