Just over a week after stunning the cycling world with doping revelations, Jörg Jaksche was invited to the Tour de France stage finish in Gent by the German public TV channel ARD to talk about his experiences. The rider, who set the entire peloton on the defensive after admitting to using banned substances and blood doping, was a surprising choice after commentators Marcel Wüst and Jens Heppner were dismissed by German television, who did not want to use the former professionals because of doping confessions of their former peers Erik Zabel and Rolf Aldag.
The selection of Jaksche was intended to show that the media outlet is taking the fight against doping seriously after the station was criticised for lack of doping coverage, but it has instead confused many viewers. The station was inundated with calls during the prologue from viewers wishing to hear about the race itself rather than doping.
Jaksche headed unashamedly onto Walter Godefroot's home turf after levelling serious charges that the former T-Mobile directeur sportif was involved in systematic doping - something Godefroot vigorously denied. Jaksche told Sueddeutsche Zeitung that he wasn't afraid of any legal action that might be filed against him, saying, "Why would he sue me? He knows I am right." Jaksche revealed that he will meet with the UCI and WADA soon and will also have an appointment with the prosecutors in his hometown of Ansbach in late July.
Jaksche has been accused of coming out with the revelations only because he was paid well by the magazine who published it - a charge he denies. "I only got reimbursed [for] expenses in the low five-figure numbers."
Jaksche said he felt welcomed at the Tour, especially by the younger riders, who thought it was great that he talked. "The older ones may have been a little more reserved, but I don't feel chased."