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Matschiner calls on Rabobank riders to confess to doping

By:
Cycling News
Published:
February 23, 2013, 14:26 GMT,
Updated:
February 23, 2013, 13:29 GMT
Edition:
First Edition Cycling News, Sunday, February 24, 2013

Austrian opens up on relationship with Dutch team

It is time for the truth to come out about doping at the former Rabobank team, Stefan Matschiner has said. “Everyone who worked there must finally tell that there was organized doping at Rabobank,” he said.

Matschiner was the key figure in the Humanplasma blood doping scheme. In 2010 he was sentenced to one year in prison and 14 months probation for his actions.

In an interview with the Dutch newspaper NRC, Matschiner confirmed that former Rabobank riders Thomas Dekker and Michael Rasmussen were his clients. Dekker has acknowledged undergoing blood transfusion whilst with Rabobank and is co-operating with a Dutch Anti-Doping Agency investigation. He previously served a two-year suspension. Rasmussen recently confessed to his doping past and is now sitting out his suspension.

Matschiner described to NRC how he delivered blood bags to Rabobank doctor Geert Leinders at the 2005 Tour de France. “I had two blood bags with me, he would have only one. He gave me the full amount paid: 1,000 euros.”

He did not name other riders who have not confessed, but encouraged them to do so. “I will not betray athletes. But I put out a call to the Rabobank riders who were my clients. They must now finally say: I have doped.”

Matschiner also refused to directly say whether Michael Boogerd was a doping client. The Dutchman has denied the charges, but said that he bought only vitamins from the Austrian. 

“Maybe you should ask Michael again,” Matschiner said.  “There were probably many invoices. But I guess you could have bought lots of vitamins."

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