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Danish anti-doping chief critical of Riis' confessions

By:
Susan Westemeyer
Published:
November 14, 2010, 10:40 GMT,
Updated:
November 14, 2010, 11:26 GMT
Edition:
First Edition Cycling News, Sunday, November 14, 2010

Sorensen supports ex-teammate after autobiography

The head of the Danish National Anti-Doping Agency Jes Evald has criticised Bjarne Riis' confessions of drug use in his newly-published autobiography, saying the former Tour de France winner could have been a big help in the fight against doping if he had disclosed a more details. however former Danish rider Rolf Sorensen defends the Saxo Bank team owner.

Riis' statements concerning his doping use while a professional rider from 1986 to 1999 could have helped “if he had told how it happened and who was involved,” Evald told Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten.

“The way he disclosed it does not contribute any further knowledge about the environment and one could well imagine that some of the people from that time are still active in cycling. It is too easy to say that the mentality has changed dramatically for the better in recent years.”

However Sorensen thinks that Riis acted properly, considering his current role as team owner. “It is like any other workplace. If you want to keep your job and be active in the environment, it is not sensible to name names,” he said.

"Most people who are familiar with cycling probably have the view that Bjarne Riis has taken major steps for the sport in the right direction in terms of a clean sport. In addition, I do not think that there may be many left of those who distributed the substances at the time.”

Danish cycling expert Henrik Elmgreen echoed Sorensen's thoughts. “The story Riis tells is part of history. It is guaranteed to be exciting and interesting reading and could be even more exciting if he also talked about other sinners or backers. But Riis ended his career in the late 1990s. I cannot exclude that there still are people from back then who still play a role in the doping game, but I find it hard to imagine that Riis's mention of others could be used in the fight against doping."

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