Quick Step manager Patrick Lefevere has reacted regarding the recent signing of Stefan Schumacher, whose positive retroactive test for EPO this week revealed that he used the drug during the Tour de France. Lefevere and Schumacher had signed an agreement during the World Championships in Varese, Italy, but the Belgian said he was not considering taking on the German anymore.
Asked if Schumacher was still coming into the team in 2009, Lefevere told the Gazet van Antwerpen, "There is no way. The contract that he signed on the eve of the Worlds in Varese will take effect on January 1, but I consider it as null and void. I have already written a statement for the moment that I will be officially informed about his positive test."
Lefevere had been taken by surprise after French laboratory Châtenay-Malabry as well as the anti-doping lab in Lausanne, Switzerland, had found Schumacher's blood samples from the Tour de France showed evidence of the use of the performance-enhancing drug. "Of course I was surprised," he said, especially since "all the teams screen possible newcomers for doping. In the case of Schumacher, the screening was even more thorough, because there always had been rumours about him. [Team doctor] Yvan Vanmol asked the UCI for all sorts of data on him. But even blood values apparently don't reveal everything."