After learning of Ivan Basso's admission to involvement in Operación Puerto, T-Mobile Team manager Bob Stapleton has said that all implicated athletes must be investigated fully using DNA analysis, and not simply the high profile cases of Basso or former T-Mobile rider Jan Ullrich.
"Our position is that Puerto is not just about Jan or Basso," Stapleton told Cyclingnews. "It's about identifying all the athletes involved and to do that based on DNA testing the blood now and later, a review of all the additional supporting documents. Once identities are established, the normal suspension and sanction process should be initiated."
With the Tour de France fast approaching, and more potential Puerto suspects continuing to emerge, Stapleton insists that the Puerto mess must be cleaned up to avoid a repeat of last year's Tour. "We believe that there is still time to do this prior to the Tour," he said. "The ASO, UCI and WADA work together now and initiate a criminal or civil case. Otherwise, the Tour de France may have a repeat of 2007 - 49 new suspects identified and potential leading athletes identified at the start, during the race, or after the podium in Paris."
Cyclingnews' recent coverage of 'Operación Puerto'
April 2, 2009 - Valverde indignant over possible suspension
April 1, 2009 - Valverde: Italy requests two-year suspension
March 13, 2009 - Le Monde newspaper hit with fine over Puerto allegations
March 2, 2009 - WADA president Fahey asks for Puerto evidence
February 24, 2009 - Spanish federation seeks access to Puerto blood bags
February 20, 2009 - CONI considers Valverde case while UCI awaits verdict
February 19, 2009 - Valverde under criminal investigation
February 11, 2009 - Valverde summonsed for Operación Puerto in Italy
February 8, 2009 - Eight charged in Operación Puerto