A delegation of riders has asked French sports minister Valerie Fourneyron and Senate Committee not to release its report concerning doping at the 1998 Tour de France until after this year's Tour. It was earlier announced that the report would be released on July 18, the 18th stage of the race, when the peloton will climb the Alpe d'Huez twice.
Earlier this week it was disclosed that Laurent Jalabert was positive for EPO in retroactive testing done in 2004. Many other samples from the 1998 race were said to also be positive.
Jens Voigt, Jérémy Roy, Samuel Dumoulin, Jerome Pineau, and Luis Angel Mate met with Fourneyron for half an hour Saturday morning before the stage. These affairs from 15 years ago are from riders '”not of our generation,” Dumoulin said afterwards to L'Equipe. “We wanted to say were are tired of being singled out. Today it is a sport like any other. There are no more positive cases than elsewhere.”
Fourneyron agreed that “Cycling has been the victim of a media lynching. The Tour is not doping.”
Roy pointed his objection to the timing of the proposed report. “We do not see much use in publishing this list at that time,'” he said. “This is still the Tour and cycling that will be soiled.”
Fourneyron said that while the sport and the Tour were conducting an effective fight against doping, more must be done. “On this issue, there is the independence of the AFLD compared to the UCI, with the use of the biological passport, whereabouts, pre-departure checks. There is also a coordination of those who fight against the traffic: the Ministries of Interior, Justice, Customs and our ministry. "