Rabobank board member Piet van Schijndel has labeled the scandal surrounding Michael Rasmussen's dismissal a crisis that he wouldn't wish on anyone, but has added that the organisation is determined to continue its involvement with the sport. "We have to learn from this report, but Rabobank will cycle on," Van Schijndel told AD.nl on Monday at the presentation of the report on Rasmussen's dismissal by an independent committee.
On Monday an independent committee, employed by Dutch bank Rabobank, announced in a 48-page report that it was wrong for Rasmussen to start the Tour de France. The committee was headed by Peter Vogelzang, a former chief of the Utrecht Police and head of the 2004 Dutch Olympic team.
"From the report we can obtain certain conclusions, for the sport, for the team and for us as sponsor," he added. "We have to learn from this, but we want to absolutely continue as sponsor. We have always taken the risk the riders will dope and in essence this is not a doping case."
Rasmussen announced late last week that he did indeed mislead the UCI and general public, however claimed that the Rabobank squad was aware of his real whereabouts. The Dane is scheduled to meet with the UCI to discuss his side of the story latter this week (see separate story).
"I think that we reacted openly and adequately," Van Schijndel continued. "Cycling will remain a fine sport and has brought us a lot. It is obvious that the sport needs to become stricter and more professional in regards to doping. I hope that this is a new step for all the teams."