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Verbruggen: UCI should not have accepted Armstrong cash

Cycling News
March 11, 2013, 09:17,
March 11, 2013, 09:37
Second Edition Cycling News, Monday, March 11, 2013
Hein Verbruggen (file photo) Photo: © Mark Gunter

Hein Verbruggen (file photo) Photo: © Mark Gunter

  • Hein Verbruggen (file photo) Photo: © Mark Gunter
  • Former UCI president Hein Verbruggen is at the Tour of Oman.
  • Hein Verbruggen passed the ProTour to McQuaid

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Claims to have doubted Armstrong over the years

The UCI should not have accepted the cash donation from Lance Armstrong, former UCI president Hein Verbruggen said on Dutch television. “In retrospect, this was an unfortunate decision.”

He also said that he always had his doubts about Armstrong's performances.

Current UCI president Pat McQuaid has said that Armstrong made two payments to the UCI. He gave them a personal cheque for $25,000 in 2002, and his management company Capital Sports and Entertainment paid $100,000 in 2005.

The first payment was used by the UCI's Anti-Doping Council to conduct anti-doping tests on junior riders, and the second payment went towards a Sysmex blood testing machine.

Verbruggen was president of the UCI when the payments were made, and on Sunday evening told Dutch broadcaster NOS, “If we had known then what we know now, we would have never done that.”

He also denied that the federation helped Armstrong in any way. "It just can not be concluded that we have favoured Armstrong, because we did not. We could do nothing for him.”

Nor did the UCI cover up a positive Armstrong EPO doping control at the 2001 Tour de Suisse, he said, although he seemed to indicate that there was a questionable control.  “We warned everyone who was suspicious in the hope that he would stop,” Verbruggen said.

Verbruggen, 71, had long been a public supporter of Armstrong, in 2011 telling, “ Lance Armstrong has never used doping. Never, never, never,” although he later denied having said that. Now, he claimed that he had always questioned Armstrong's performance.  “You always have doubts, but as the president of the UCI you can't bring it out. He was also tested 220 times and never tested positive.”

The confession of Armstrong's doping use was a disappointment.  “I did not feel very good at all. I have so far refrained from contact with him, but in the future I think it will still happen. He gave us a lot of trouble and I am still worried.”

rastymick More than 1 year ago
“ Lance Armstrong has never used doping. Never, never, never,”... Some time after Armstrongs confession: "Yes, I always had my doubts about Armstrong's performances..." Isn't he funny? They make me laugh every day - thanks a lot.
DaveGahan More than 1 year ago
I cannot stop laughing... These (in public's opinion) allready fallen guys seem to suffer on schizophrenia.... :-) But, I wouldn't be surprised when they even survived the current situation. It's crazy....
Silver Bullet More than 1 year ago
Proud to be a card carrying Hater of Heil Hein.
Larry @CycleItalia More than 1 year ago
When this fellow's lips are moving, nothing but bu__hit comes out of his mouth.
Mister Crud More than 1 year ago
He always had doubts. Always, always, always!
ianfra More than 1 year ago
It's about time that Verbruggen and the Irish tinker got out of it. McQuaid is just an appalling person. How many times have we tried to contact him regarding problems with cycling in Asia? How many replies did we get? NONE. Why? Off course there was no money in it for him.
ridleyrider More than 1 year ago
There one was a man named Heinie Whose statements were glaringly whine-y While talking of Lance Caught fire to his pants And burned a big mark on his hinny
NashbarShorts More than 1 year ago
Postal kit no longer sold in stores, Pat and Hein are seen as lying bores, As Lance fed them cash, To Vegas they'd dash, And spend all that money on wh*res!!
REDLANTERN More than 1 year ago
Pat McQuaid Must Go More than 1 year ago
It is actually surprising that cycling has survived the two decades of 'leadership' by those two cowboys! They have facilitated, been complicit, shown disdain for truthful observers, badmouthed whistleblowers, etc.... and then they have the gall to talk about their contributions to the 'global' sport which is at the forefront of anti-doping and is an example for all others to follow? Spare me!
Marino Gallo More than 1 year ago
NOW he tells us!
BobAli More than 1 year ago
To be fair to Pat Mcquaid, his time as the chief has slowly seen a turn about in the attitude towards doping and anti-doping practices in the sport. How much of this improvement was actually down to him though, as opposed to other individuals and the pressure they placed on the system to change may not be too impressive. BUT, Hein Verbruggen makes Mcquaid look like an energetic anti-doper who has championed the sport to be fairer and cleaner. Thank god he is not in direct power anymore in the UCI. But in reality, it really is time for both to go. No actually scratch that, it really is way past time for them to go.
NashbarShorts More than 1 year ago
This is a bit like a murderer saying, "I should not have been rude to people..." 219+1 = 500. Love the math!!
bjohal More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed all your comments.