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Jaksche gives up the fight

Jörg Jaksche has given up his fight to return to the professional peloton. The German rider has been searching in vain for a team, and has now decided to hang up his racing wheels. "My career is finally over," he told German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung. "If I don't find something in Germany, then I won't find something anywhere."

After discussions with Milram in January, Jaksche thought that he had a chance to sign with the team when his doping-related suspension ends on June 30. However, the newspaper said Milram told him on Friday that there was nothing for him there. He had continued to train, "sometimes like a fool," in the hope of returning to racing.

"If there is nothing for me at Milram, then that was it – that's it, it's all over. I won't wait any longer, because they won't want me next year either," he added.

Meanwhile, the 31 year-old had seen the news that Ivan Basso, also suspended for his involvement in Operación Puerto, had signed a two-year contract with ProTour team Liquigas, effective when his suspension ends. "They welcome a Basso with open arms," said Jaksche. "But you yourself have to run from pillar to post and in the end you're like a leper. Basso did it more intelligently."

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