Jan Ullrich may be preparing to sue the Spanish newspaper El Pais, which has mentioned his name in relationship to the newest doping scandal. "That puts a lot of pressure on Jan," his manager Wolfgang Strohband told the Sueddeutsche Zeitung. "So Jan said to me, 'We have to do something.' And because Jan's denial is so definite, we will follow up. We will go on the offensive against the newspaper, but I still have to speak to our lawyers about it."
Strohband didn't give any further details, but did not deny the possibility of Ullrich giving a DNA sample to compare to the blood bags found with the name "JAN" on them. [There is more than one professional rider with that name - ed.]
The manager admitted that he and Ullrich have not reacted to previous doping rumours. "We always thought, they would just peter out. But this time we just had to do something," he said, noting that "it could be expensive for the Spanish newspaper."
Dr. Werner Franke, a noted German biologist and anti-doping campaigner, said that a DNA comparison could be quick and simple. The red blood cells could not be used, but the white blood cells could be. "With one single, original Jan Ullrich hair, you could make a very quick DNA comparison. That takes maybe two days - und is even quicker than a paternity test." If Ullrich should decide against the test, Franke says, "then he must have a guilty conscience."