News for June 20, 1999

Spain, Valencia, Velódromo Luis Puig, Track World Cup, Round 3, Day 1, June 18-20

 1. Robert Bartko (Ger)		          4.26.741
 2. Serguei Matveyev (Ukr)	          4.28.917
 3. Mauro Trentini (Ita)			  4.25.789
 4. Robert Hayles (GB)		          4.30.150
 5. Linas Balciunas (Lit)		      4.33.451
 6. Robert Slippens (Ned)		      4.35.104
 7. Thomas Mulkey (USA)		          4.35.204
 8. Jerome Neuville (Fra)		      4.37.378
 9. Hayden Goodfrey (NZ)		      4.37.908
10. Frank Corvers (Bel)		          4.38.207

Kilo Time Trial

 1. Jason Queally (GB)	              1.03.411
 2. Stefan Nimke (Ger)	              1.03.913
 3. Damien Gerard (Fra)	              1.04.540
 4. Grzegorz Krejner (Pol)	          1.04.772
 5. Toshiaki Fushimi (Jap)	          1.05.476
 6. Jonas Carney (USA)	              1.05.914
 7. Bloch Garen (RSA)	              1.06.296
 8. Dimitris Georgalis (Gre)	      1.06.354
 9. Patrik Merk (Swi)	              1.06.399
10. José Manuel Moreno (Spa)	      1.06.475
Thanks to Fernando Ferrari, Meta 2Mil

It goes on ...


Belgium teletext has published a number of pages covering the latest news about Frank Vandenbroucke. The Belgian rider has told the Belgian press that he has been acquitted of any drugs charges by the Paris judge Michel Collin. All the analyses done were negative and the products were all homeopathic. The previous news published by the French newspaper L'Equipe about amphetamines have now been shown to be wrong. L'Equipe have publicly apologise to VDB on Saturday morning. The judge is also saying that anyone who links VDB to banned substances is risking heavy civil legal action.

The French judge apologized for the behaviour of the French press. Cofidis have also indicated that they will talk to the rider early next week with the view of lifting his suspension. VDB has indicated that he would like to return to racing on July 26 in Villafranca. He said his level of fitness is poor at present because he has hardly trained in the last 40 days. He now has set his targets for the rest of the season as the GP Zurich and the World Championships.

Vandenbroucke repeated that horse breeder Bernard Sainz, known in the cycling world as 'doctor Mabuse', "never gave him any doping products. I was under the care of Sainz with homeopathic products. All the allegations about me being involved in doping have not been corroborated by anybody".

The cyclist also cleared lawyer Bertrand Lavelot, the suspected partner of Sainz. He said: "Lavelot has only been a legal counselor to me."

Pantani on his 1995 hematocrit level

Italian Marco Pantani has indicated that the reason for his high hematocrit level after the accident he suffered in November of 1995 at Milano-Torino, was the three weeks that he spent at altitude to prepare for the Worlds. "I hope that the doctors that know the answer will provide the explanation. Before the accident I spent 20 days in Colombia preparing for the cycling worlds, at 2,800 metres. That is the logical explanation because the value increases when you spend a lot of time at altitude in those conditions."

Spanish team to ride in the Tour

ONCE-Deutsche Bank confirmed their participation at the 86th edition of the Tour de France. They said that: "as part of current agreements, international rules and the principles that rule amongst EU countries for their workers, the team will attend with their riders, technical team and other staff that they consider adequate under the direction of their UCI accredited manager, Manuel Saiz". The team's lawyers are continuing to study the implications of the Tour organisers' decision to exclude Saiz and the team doctor.

We all need to be lawyers!

In Rome, Pierguido Sprani, a prosecuter for the city of Ferrara, has instructed the Firenze police to seize documents arising from Pantani's appearance before the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) in Bologna on Thursday. Pantani spoke to the antidoping jury of CONI for 2 hours on "routine matters". The office of the DA is conducting its own investigation into doping and are examining the practices of Professor Conconi and Dr. Ferrari. The latter is being questioned in Bologna for the alleged supply of banned drugs. substances.

Telekom has had a small victory:

Team Telekom has had a small victory against Der Spiegel to prevent them continuing to allege that the team conducted systematic doping of its riders. A team spokesperson, Stefan Althoff said the injunction was sought in a Frankfurt court and was seeking an order which would forbid Der Spiegel from repeating the information they reported last Monday. They also wanted to stop the magazine from stating that Telekom has to "pick up in a bag all the needles and ampules that are left behind by their riders at the hotels." On Friday, the court ruled that the magazine could not continue to make allegations that they could not prove. If Der Spiegel fail to abide by the oder they would be fined half a million Marks ($US295,000).

Some reactions about Vini Caldirola

The exclusion of Vini Caldirola means that Leblanc has used the blood test as a punishment for the first time. Dutch press sources are very critical of the recent events surrounding the Tour de France. They say that the selection decisions of the Tour organisation are increasingly based on power games and arbitrariness. It is argued that Honchar exceeded 50 per cent so the whole team was excluded, yet on the same day Austrian Harald Morscher was also above 50% but the Saeco team was not excluded. When confronted with this apparent anomaly (among many others), Jean-Marie Leblanc said that Honchar was the team leader while Morscher was only a worker. Leblanc said: "He should not even have been selected for the Saeco's tour team." But then it is pointed out that Mercatone Uno have been allowed to start even though their team leader Marco Pantani was thrown out of the Giro with an excessive red blood cell count.

Team manager of Vini Caldirola, Roberto Amadio said: "There is no justice. How can you ban a whole team because one rider? It's about time the UCI showed some leadership and did something. And it isn't correct that Honchar would have been our team leader in this year's Tour de France. Our top rider for the Tour was going to be Francesco Casagrande."

Amore e Vita takes disgraced rider back

Amore e Vita has taken Italian rider Filippo Meloni back. He was fired on March 4 after a blood test. The team management said today that: "Meloni regrets his actions and now wants to start with a clean slate. He has cooperated with us to find out a lot of background to the doping."

Farm Frites not panicking

The commercial director of the co sponsor of TVM, Albert van der Vlies, said: "There is no panic. We are just continuing as normal. Our contract comes up at the end of this year. Than we will do an evaluation. But our intention is still to go on as co-sponsor, or maybe as the major sponsor."

Tour de France selection policies against the law

L. Misson, a lawyer from Liege, says a case against the Société Tour de France for their selection policies would have a big chance of succeeding. Misson specialises in rights of professional sportspersons. He was the man who started a procedure for the Belgian soccer player Jean-Marc Bosman after some transfer troubles. After years he won the case and overturned the previous transfer system in European soccer. He said that all the decisions excluding Virenque, Roux, Gaumont, TVM, Saiz and Terrados are illegal. There is no legal ground for these decisions.

Misson said: "Leblanc infringed the rights of the sportsman because professional riders has the right to earn their bread."

What about the regulations of the TdF? "The rules of the Tour have nothing to do with the law. I cannot say it any stronger: most of the sports rules are completely against the law. All these cyclists are not convicted of anything. That means they are not guilty."

Riis out of Tour

Bjarne Riis has a broken wrist and broken elbow after his fall on Friday morning before the start of Stage 2 in the Tour de Suisse. He has been told he need at least 4 weeks rest.

Post Swiss to extend sponsorship

The managers of Post Swiss, the Swiss mail service decided on Friday to continue to sponsor the cycling team of the same name for then next two or three years. Team Post Swiss, directed by Frenchman Jaques Michaud, has in their lineup riders like Rolf Jaermann, twice winner of the Amstel Gold Race and the young promise, twenty five year old, Daniel Schnider.

Rolf Jaermann

Willi Felix a friend of Rolf Jaermann from the Post Swiss Team has told me that last evening the Post Swiss rider announced his retirement from racing after this season. He was won of the better professional riders with 2 Amstel Gold races to his credit, in addition to a Tour de France stage and a Tour de Suisse stage. He added many other triumphs to his record. He was also the first rider to run his own Internet diary. He carried his notebook computer with him at all times and created the "legendary" diary which in Switzerland has cult status.

On a related front, the managers of Post Swiss, the Swiss mail service decided on Friday to continue to sponsor the cycling team of the same name for then next two or three years.

Mario Cipollini to leave Saeco

Mario Cipollini will leave Saeco at the end of the season after failing to agree on a new contract. He apparently asked for a new 2-year contract but Saeco would only consider a one year arrangement. In the meantime, Cipollini has been talking to Cofidis. The French team are interested in Mario and also in his two master knights - Mario Scirea and Giuseppe Calcaterra.