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Tour leader dumped from national team

Rasmussen in yellow

Rasmussen in yellow (Image credit:

Rabobank's Michael Rasmussen is experiencing one of cycling's greatest honours, wearing the Tour de France's yellow jersey, but at home in Denmark not everything is as rosy with his national federation dumping him from the national squad in a row over drug testing. Rasmussen has known of the Danish Cycling Union's decision since June 26, with the union claiming the Tour de France leader has received three warnings over failing to inform authorities of his whereabouts.

"We consider this case with great seriousness and the executive of the DCU decided that Michael will no longer be part of the national team and he was informed of this on June 26," DCU director Jesper Wore told AFP. "It has been decided that Michael will no longer be part of the national team."

Rasmussen has dismissed the issue as an administrative mistake, claiming he's only received one warning on the issue. "There must be someone at the top who doesn't wish me well," Rasmussen told Danish newspaper Politiken. "I can't find another explanation. I tried to give an explanation of what happened, but they wouldn't accept it.

Rasmussen will not be able to contest September's World Road Championships in Stuttgart, Germany, nor will he be allowed to represent his nation in the Beijing Olympic Games next season as a result of the DUC's decision.

"The DCU is not saying that Michael tested positive," said Worre. "But there are question marks over his behaviour and attitude that place doubts over his place in the national team."

"It is confidential information but people have the right to know that the DCU fights for a clean sport," added Worre.

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