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Hamilton: UCI must accept responsibility for cycling's past

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Tyler Hamilton in 2004

Tyler Hamilton in 2004 (Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Tyler Hamilton returned to the Tour in 2004 after an incredible 2003. However his form was off and he could never rise to his 2003 level again

Tyler Hamilton returned to the Tour in 2004 after an incredible 2003. However his form was off and he could never rise to his 2003 level again (Image credit: Sirotti)
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Tyler Hamilton got his Giro stage during the 2002 edition. Photo ©: Sirotti/www.sirotti.it

Tyler Hamilton got his Giro stage during the 2002 edition. Photo ©: Sirotti/www.sirotti.it
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(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)

The UCI must accept ”the responsibility for the past,” Tyler Hamilton has said. He called for a “new start with new leadership” for the sport. The 41-year-old also said he “assumed” that Jan Ullrich also doped during his career.

Talking to the German news magazine FOCUS, Hamilton reflected on the Lance Armstrong case and the future of pro cycling. “Lance always had the UCI on his side,” he said. “To have a new start, the UCI and President Pat McQuaid must accept the responsibility for the past. A new start functions only with a new leadership, which preferably doesn't come from cycling.”

He also said that former UCI President Hein Verbruggen should step down as a member of the International Olympic Committee. “He shouldn't be allowed to do the job.”

Hamilton's testimony played an important role in the USADA's decision to give Armstrong a lifetime ban.

As to Ullrich, Hamilton admitted that while he “never personally saw him doping, I assume he did.” The two never rode on the same team, but “a conservative guess is that 80 percent” of the Tour de France riders doped, and while Ullrich always finished so high, he could believe it.

In addition, both Hamilton and Ullrich were clients of Eufemiano Fuentes. “That was certainly not a training doctor, that was a doping doctor,” Hamilton said.

After Ullrich was given a two-year ban earlier this year, he acknowledged contact with Fuentes, but has never directly addressed the doping charges.