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Durand admits name will be on French Senate list of EPO positives

Jacky Durand says his name will appear on the list of 44 positives for EPO that will be released by the French Senate on Wednesday.

Durand, a three-time stage winner of the Tour de France and Tour of Flanders winner, has told his employer Eurosport that he hopes that the report results in real reforms for the sport of cycling.

"I admit my actions," he said. "I always deliberately discussed this for many years, whether with young riders, different journalists or my employers. Anyway I think that nobody is fooled. Press, supporters, spectators and racers know the difference between current and traditional practices regarding EPO. But of course, the general public may be confused between what happened in 1998 and what is happening now.

"The next generation must not pay for our crap from the past," he continued. "Today, I do not think of myself, but of them. My career is behind me. I think of the kid that is a break out during the Tour and to himt we will say 'you, you're drugged, like the others'. I think of a Thibaut Pinot, who finished 10th in the Tour at age 22, or a Romain Bardet. And I do not want it discredited by the pretext that our generation has been bullshit. Our sport is much cleaner now, I want people to understand."

The results and the report was initially expected to be published on July 18, the day of the Tour de France stage to Alpe d'Huez but was delayed until Wednesday after riders held talks with French sports minister Valérie Fourneyron.

According to French media, 44 of 60 urine samples that were retroactively tested contained traces of EPO. In 1998 there was no test for the banned blood-boosting drug. The late Marco Pantani won the 1998 Tour de France ahead of Germany's Jan Ullrich and Bobby Julich of the USA. It was also the year of the Festina Affaire, when the team's soigneur was caught with a car full of doping products and the whole team was forced to leave the race.

The results of the tests cannot be used for disciplinary action because they were not done following an anti-doping protocol. However the publication of the names would highlight the widespread abuse of EPO during the nineties.

Durand, now 46, said that he is hopeful that the release of the names continues to bring about reform in anti-doping "otherwise these statements will have no effect other than to discredit our sport, which made its breakthrough in the fight against doping before most other federations."

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