Team directors to meet over NAS raid

By John Trevorrow in Marostica

Team directors at the Giro d'Italia will have an emergency meeting 45 minutes before the start of today's stage to decide their reaction to yesterday's raid on the race by the Italian drug squad, the NAS.

NAS officers confiscated an Alti-trainer from the Lotto-Davitamon team, a device which lowers the oxygen content of the air around a rider as he sleeps, simulating the effect of sleeping at high altitude, which is known to stimulate an increase in red blood cell production.

"The police searched our hotel and our team bus but there's nothing to worry about," said Davitamon-Lotto directeur sportif Allan Peiper. "The Alti-trainer is something every team uses and it's not illegal under the UCI rules."

"The UCI are backing us because these machines are legal and all the teams use them. It's just a minor Italian law that outlaws the procedure."

For Peiper, the raid was a disappointing way to end the day in which Robbie McEwen took his third victory in this Giro d'Italia. "It's just taken the gloss off a great day yesterday," Peiper told Cyclingnews. "However, all will be revealed today. We're having a team directors' meeting 45 minutes before the start of the stage to decide how we respond to this.

"If we've got a problem so has every other team."

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