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News Roundup 15 October 2003
By Podofdonny
Date: 10/15/2003
News Roundup 15 October 2003

World Championships "Abnormal" Samples

The UCI has confirmed that blood samples of 4 different riders have been sent to a laboratory in Lausanne for further investigation as there were found "abnormal" parameters. The riders, all participants of the World Championships 2004 in Hamilton, are 2 riders from Spain, 1 from Belgium and 1 from Italy.

The Director of Medical Services for Real Federación Española de Ciclismo, Manuel Pueyo, speaking to the Spanish website, has voiced his disquiet over the release of this story.

He said: "I do not understand why it has been published that abnormal parameters exist and that blood samples have been sent to Switzerland. That demonstrates a total confusion in the method of work of the controls."

"There were two hematocrit controls on three Spanish cyclists and many other teams and riders. That is normal. Those controls do not give a positive or negative result, but fit or unfit to ride. All the Spaniards were declared fit to ride - the reason why it is not possible to talk of “abnormal parameters” in the blood of riders who are within the limits marked by the UCI. is that it is no longer possible to make further analysis on those blood samples, because the hematocrit and haemoglobin and other parameters have already been analysed and there is nothing left to study.”

The three riders who took part in the second tests were Aitor Osa, Igor Astarloa and Manuel Beltrán, while Astarloa and Alejandro Valverde were tested at the end of the race, as is normal.

Manuel Pueyo concluded, “If those controls are sent to Switzerland for EPO testing, there is no way that work could have started before Monday, so the results would not be known until Friday at the earliest. How it can be that on Tuesday somebody starts to spread doubts? I do not have any concerns, but it annoys me to read this type of commentary."

Photos from Milano Turino

Team Saeco has a few pictures of Mirko Celestino, winner of today's Milano-Turino here. See the race report and results here.

“Champion, flic et voyou”

Philippe Boyer, the former kilometre champion of France has published a book entitled “Champion, flic et voyou” ("Champion, cop and hooligan"), which is another ex -cyclist expose of drugs and other illicit dealings in the cycling world. He describes the business of trafficking and use of “dopage” in the peloton. He also explains how he defrauded antidopage controls. He also points the finger at various cycling champions and personalities. The picture drawn by this former police officer is pretty depressing. He concludes that even today a considerable number of well placed people (team doctors, sporting directeurs and even ministers) are soaked in doping.

Maurice Vrillac, president of the medical commission of the French National Olympic and sporting Committee and Daniel Morelon, national trainer of track cycling, contradict the assertions of Philippe Boyer.

"It is a plot. Philippe Boyer never provided me drugs. During the Olympic Games of 1984, a rider was very sick because of doping products. Philippe Boyer, who was a true encyclopaedia of doping, only told me the rider had taken corticoïdes," said Maurice Vrillac.

Daniel Morelon was equally dismissive - "Philippe Boyer a cheat and without morals. He profited from sportsmen by selling them products and today he denounces them. I excluded him from the team of France in 1988. He was ready to sell his soul to make this book interesting."

Kelme “Betrayed”

The announcement that Oscar Sevilla will ride next season with Team Phonak has enraged Pepe Quiles, the owner of Team Kelme. Heras, Botero and Gonzalez have all left the Kelme team in less than happy circumstances.

Now Sevilla, who had apparently given his reassurance that he was staying with the team is also leaving. According to Quiles, Sevilla had given him a verbal promise that he would renew his contract for one year, before the start of the Vuelta a España.

"He hasn't even called me to tell me, neither he nor his representative. They should feel ashamed and that's why they don't call. I've had the contract ready for signing for a month and he has been prolonging it. Now I will have to see what I do with it, if I'll wipe my ass with them or what. What you can't do is leave like this. If he would have told me a month ago, it wouldn't have bothered me as much as it has bothered me now. There is a team behind him, which has been built in his style. Now, what do I do with those riders. This doesn't make any sense".

"When Heras left and Sevilla remained, I said that still he was very young to take the responsibility to lead the team. With Valverde, history repeats itself. I cannot give a 23 year old youngster the leadership of a whole team," comments Quiles. "If I had broken a verbal agreement he would have crucified me! But he has done it. I am not happy because it gives me very little time to look for a leader. It is true that we have had discussions with Isidro Nozal, but we thought we could still count on Sevilla.”

News from Interbike - Landbouwkrediet

In addition to Cristian Gasperoni, whom we reported last week will be joining Landbouwkrediet next season, the team is looking to add another big rider who is as yet unnamed. The tip is the next up-and-coming rider to watch in the team - Rusian Gryshenko.

Tour of Malaysia - a rough ride

The Tour de Malaysia (TdM) has not gone smoothly. Due to technical personnel boycotting the race due to regulation and pay issues, Tuesday's Stage 9 was run without a commissaire, timekeeper, judge, sprint personnel or photo finish personnel. Indeed, a local tv cameraman recorded the day's finish by winner Wawan Setyobudi.  Japan's Hidemori Nodera (Shimano Racing Team) lead the tour since stage 3 and today took the overall individual title. Wawan Setyobudi, representing Wismilak Club from Indonesia, took the green sprinter's jersey. The blue jersey, for the best Malaysian cyclist, was won by Mahadzir Hamad.

Apparently the Malaysia National Cycling Federation has been unable to cover the country's longest-running race costs timely. As of a few days ago, race sponsors were still being shifted around, with one withdrawing and another coming on board and the prize money deposits still not being made.

Earlier in the race, flooding cause the re-routing and re-scheduling of the day's course.

The UCI can suspend the national body if its obligations, such as these, are not met. This would mean that Malaysia would not be able to be represented in international events, and there are several races run in Langkawi, including the Tour de Langkawi, the inaugural Tour de Borneo, the Perlis Open and the Eagle Tour of Malaysia that could also be jeopardized. (New Strait Times, Utusan Online)

Cyclists honour Yorkshire legend

Top cyclists have remembered one of Yorkshire's most famous competitors on two wheels as they launched a byway.

Sydney Olympics medallist and former world champion Yvonne McGregor was among the riders celebrating the opening of North Yorkshire's 218 miles of the National Byway yesterday, linking the East Riding and North-East England sections of the national network which will be 4,000 miles long by the time it is completed in 2005.

Its route enters North Yorkshire south of Malton and takes in Ryedale and the Howardian Hills on its way to Easingwold and the foothills of the Dales, then on to Richmond. Easingwold was the starting point yesterday for the first Arthur Metcalfe Memorial Ride, organised by a group of friends of the Yorkshire cycling champion who died last year at the age of 64. Leeds-born Metcalfe, who lived in Harrogate, won the round-Britain Milk Race in 1964.

Two years later he gained the unique distinction of winning the national amateur road race championship and the British best all-rounder time trial title in the same season and turned professional, competing in the Tour de France in 1967 and 1968.

The memorial ride, with two routes of 62 or 25 miles, is intended to become a charity fund-raising event for the British Heart Foundation next year.

More than 2,000 miles of the National Byway are now open for use and the trail meanders along Britain's quiet lanes with the aim of helping rural regeneration and encouraging exercise while people enjoy the countryside.

In North Yorkshire the project has been partly funded by the county council and regional development agency Yorkshire Forward.

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