Rider reaction to the leaked UCI “index of suspicion” from the 2010 Tour de France ranged from anger to shrugged shoulders.
David Millar of Garmin-Cervelo was outspoken in his outrage against not only the contents of the list but also the fact that it was leaked.
"This list should never have been released, never. The UCI, some of their people should be fired for this," he told the Reuters news agency. "It's shocking ... A major investigation should go on into what exactly they are doing with this model."
L'Equipe on Friday released the list, which ranked the riders from 0 (not suspicious) to 10 (highly suspicious). The UCI has said that it is merely meant as a guide to decide which riders were tested during the race.
"I'm as clean as a whistle, my team [are] the cleanest guys and I have 100 percent faith in what we do. It's a bit mad,” Millar said. "To see us in the middle of the list, it's like - are you joking? It's scandalous."
Danilo Hondo told the dpa news agency that he was “very surprised” to have received a ranking of eight. "Now the UCI must explain this list. This is about disparagement. One can only say on my behalf that my levels were consistent and inconspicuous.”
Several expressed their anger via Twitter.
"Please explain UCI. Begs the question, intentional, incompetence or corruption?" tweeted Robbie McEwen (3). "I'm all for catching cheats but draw the line at this sort of thing which could be based on one single wayward statistic. And who leaked it?"
Mark Cavendish,who was given a two, also tweeted. “So theres a leaked 1-10 'suspicion' scale for all 2010 TourDeFrance riders. So now EVERYONE'S suspicious, but just HOW suspicious?! BULLSHIT”
Manuel Quinziato had a relatively low score of four but was angry about the leak in a twitter message: “L’Equipe makes me sick. Is this the way we’re thanked for all the controls we’ve accepted to do?”
Rinaldo Nocentini had a high score of eight in the list but believes his accident after breaking leg last spring could be a reason.
“I’m not worried. Perhaps some variations were caused by my operation. I ride for a team which is careful about these things. And anyway, I only had two tests done,” he told Gazzetta dello Sport.
Omega Pharma-Lotto rider Jurgen Van den Broeck also received an eight. He finished fifth in the 2010 Tour de France. “I don't know where the UCI has found those figures,” he told sporza. “There is nothing wrong with my blood values. Before the Tour I was checked about five times. At the Tour also repeatedly, which makes sense if you are in the top ten. I have no such problem.”
Omega Pharma-Lotto was ranked a poor 17th in the list of teams calculated by L’Equipe, with a score of 31 for its riders in the 2010 Tour de France. However team doctor Jan Mathieu predicted that the Omega Pharma-Lotto would be much lower this spring.
“Between Paris-Nice and Liege-Bastogne-Liege, we had no blood monitoring. So we are in the safe zone and will all be around 0." he told Sporza.
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