German cycling federation confusion

After saying yesterday that Erik Zabel won't be riding the World Championships this year due to his admission of taking EPO in 1996, the BDR (German Cycling Federation) is now backpedalling. President Rudolf Scharping declared that the "decision won't be made until September."

According to press agency sid, BDR's vice-president (of recreational cycling) Wolfgang Schoppe has said in the meantime "there is no rush to make that call." He was quoted yesterday by the Tagesspiegel saying that the federation is against a start of Zabel in Stuttgart and the formal decision will be made this Friday.

Amidst the controversy about the German sprint star came news that the vice-president responsible for the professional cycling, Udo Sprenger, has been accused of "accepting and supporting" doping practices when he was directeur sportif with Team Nürnberger, a position he held from 1998 to 2002.

The German TV program Report Mainz said it has a declaration under oath from a former soigneur that support these accusations, while a second former team member confirmed those practices in a written statement. Sprenger said that this is not true and the "witnesses are lying."

The declaration details how start fees from certain races were used to fill a shadow account that was used to buy the doping substances. The former member of the team says that Sprenger was the accountant for that account, and that he was once there witnessing a transaction for medical substances.

Accusations have also been voiced against doctor Roland Müller, who is the Federation's doping control representative. He supposedly was responsible for administering "systematic doping" in the GDR, the former Eastern Germany. Müller declined to comment on those accusations.

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