The Bund Deutscher Radfahrer (BDR) has denied claims by Belgian TV commentators that Philipp Walsleben left the Cyclo-cross World Championships in Tabor due to a high hematocrit. The German cross champion had been suffering from an intestinal infection for several days and flew home on Sunday before the men's elite race.
The doping charges “are totally made up,” according to Walsleben. He never underwent any blood tests at the championships, “and without blood tests, nobody, not even me, can know my current blood values. I don't know how the Belgian TV came up with this information.
“I left the world championships because I was sick, not because I have anything to hide or because I was suspended,” Walsleben said.
BDR Vice President Udo Sprenger told the DPA press agency that Walsleben was already suffering from the intestinal infection when he arrived in Tabor on Wednesday, and did not get better. On Saturday it was decided that he would not start, and a UCI doctor certified him ill that evening. The 22-year-old headed home on Sunday.
During the women's race Sunday morning, Belgian television commentators from Sporza said that Walsleben had been sent home due to a high hematocrit. They have since retracted that statement.