By Susan Westemeyer
"I've pretty much written off this season," Floyd Landis said in an interview on the American ESPN TV network. He claimed that he and his lawyers are frustrated by delays in bringing his case to the anti-doping arbitration panel, noting that a date has still not yet been set.
"Right now I want to believe that the right thing will happen and we'll get a fair hearing, as long as it takes," he said, according to the press agency AFP.
The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) denies delaying matters. "We're ready to proceed," USADA general counsel Travis Tygart said. "We want hearings as soon as possible."
Landis' spokesman Michael Henson said that the main reason for the delay is the difficulty in getting the USADA to turn over documents requested by Landis' legal staff. "It's a real uphill battle for them to get the basic pieces of information they need to conduct a fair hearing," Henson said.
Furthering on his December comments about not racing for the 2007 season, Landis noted that he has only ridden about 800 miles (1300 km) since the end of the Tour de France last year. "I spend the same amount of time and energy trying to gain whatever resources are necessary and trying to learn what I need to learn, trying to solve this problem, as I spent trying to win the Tour. Every single day," he said.
Cyclingnews' coverage of the Floyd Landis case
September 28, 2008 - Landis takes case to US federal court
September 10, 2008 - Landis signing with current Health Net-Maxxis team for 2009
July 1, 2008 - CAS delivers final blow to Landis legal challenge
June 30, 2008 - Landis loses final appeal
June 28, 2008 - Landis decision due Monday
March 12, 2008 - Landis' judgment day nears
October 21, 2007 - Landis files appeal with CAS
October 18, 2007 - AFLD takes another look at Landis case
Thursday, October 11 - Landis continues fight, appeals to CAS
Saturday, September 22 - UCI officially names Pereiro 2006 Tour champion, Landis case raises issues
Friday, September 21 - Landis' appeal denied, two year suspension levied