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Recently suspended cyclist Roman Kreuziger claims ban has “no basis in UCI legislation”

Roman Kreuziger says his provisional suspension due to anomalies in his biological passport “has no basis in UCI legislation” since he has not failed an anti-doping control. Meanwhile, the managing director of his Tinkoff-Saxo team has hit out at comments made about the case by UCI president Brian Cookson.

The UCI provisionally suspended Kreuziger on Saturday, the day before he was due to start the Tour of Poland. The race was due to mark his return to competition after being withdrawn from his team’s line-up for last month’s Tour de France once it was revealed that his biological passport data were being investigated.

The 28-year-old hopes the Court of Arbitration for Sport will lift the provisional suspension before the Vuelta starts on August 23. A statement on his personal website claimed that the UCI had no power to impose the provisional suspension.

It said: “Mr. Kreuziger and his legal counsel strongly oppose the UCI decision, which has no basis in the UCI legislation, allowing imposition of a provisional suspension only in cases of a positive A sample, which is not Mr. Kreuziger’s case.”

The statement went on to insist that the immediate suspension of a rider “can only be imposed when there exists a risk that the results of a race might be affected by the alleged doping activity of a rider (it’s hard to how the 2014 race results could be affected by a blood profile finding from 2012?)”

It also questioned the timing of the provisional suspension, saying: “Until last Saturday Mr. Kreuziger had not been banned in any manner from his racing activities.

“However, after Mr. Kreuziger’s team published the press release on the rider’s appearance in the 2014 Tour of Poland, the UCI announced its intention to ban the rider immediately, which actually happened on Saturday, 2.8.2014, the night before the race started.”

The team’s frustrations have also been made clear with its managing director Sandro Feltrin writing an open letter to Cookson highlighting, among other things, what he said were inconsistencies the UCI president's comments about the case in an interview on Sunday with Cycling News.

Feltrin said it was “hard to understand how the UCI’s President in the same interview can state, on the one hand, that 'I don’t know the detailed history of the case as I wasn’t the president then, and one of the things that I have done is separate myself from the detail of the anti-doping process' and, on the other hand, 'There are very serious anomalies': obviously one of the two statements cannot be true."

Kreuziger himself underlined his frustration with the situation, saying: “I’m not a cheat, and I have not committed any doping offence. Experts confirm that there is no evidence of any alleged anti-doping rule violation in my case. This has been going on since June 2013, and still there is no formal case opened against me. Despite this I’m now provisionally suspended. I sincerely hope that this situation can be resolved quickly and not turned into a political matter.”

In a statement issued yesterday, the UCI indicated that it would look to bring about a speedy resolution to the case, saying it “shall cooperate with him in agreeing to an expedited proceeding that should allow CAS to decide the appeal before the beginning of the Vuelta.”

In response to the criticism of its handling of the issue, it added: “The UCI will not comment on the various statements by the rider and his team as to the merits of the case and will present its position in the disciplinary proceedings.”

Elliot joined team road.cc bright eyed, bushy tailed, and straight out of university.

Raised in front of cathode ray tube screens bearing the images of Miguel Indurain and Lance Armstrong, Elliot's always had cycling in his veins.
His balance was found on a Y-framed mountain bike around South London suburbs in the 90s, while his first taste of freedom came when he claimed his father's Giant hybrid as his own at age 16.

When Elliot's not writing for road.cc two wheels are still his favoured mode of transport; these days over the undulating streets of Madrid.

11 comments

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HarrogateSpa [320 posts] 1 year ago
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I don't know all the details of this case, but in the past, the UCI's default position was to give in to pressure from teams and riders on doping matters. If they are showing more backbone, it's welcome.

Also - and this doesn't mean Kreuziger is automatically guilty - it's rich for Bjarne Riis's team to be lecturing other people about innocence or guilt, and the correct procedures to follow, in a doping case.

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Punkass [14 posts] 1 year ago
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Shane Stokes put together an interview piece that does a great job of explaining the process, the timing, and why once it gets this far, it will be hard for a rider to prove innocence:

http://cyclingtips.com.au/2014/08/anti-doping-expert-parisotto-explains-...

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alotronic [450 posts] 1 year ago
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Punkass wrote:

http://cyclingtips.com.au/2014/08/anti-doping-expert-parisotto-explains-...

Well worth a quick read. Makes Tinkoff look a bit stupid really - it's not like they don't know this is what happens and indeed they signed up to it, they are just blustering in a typical I am an important person kinda way. Something out of the Armstrong play book? Rock on Cookson...

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Punkass [14 posts] 1 year ago
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The whole situation is a quagmire. I don't think for one second that the UCI is actually hugely interested in participating in cleaning up cycling. To do so would require publicly admitting that the sport is as dirty as any other sport.

This just isn't the M.O. of professional sports governing bodies, other than making the odd token statement. Why would they want to air their dirty laundry, when the way things work now means they rake in huge amounts of money?

There's no financial gain to be made in saying that the sport over which you govern is chock full of athletes using performance enhancing drugs.

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TrekBikesUK [128 posts] 1 year ago
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Oops! Wrong thread.

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Paul J [865 posts] 1 year ago
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Kreuziger is wrong I think, UCI rules 235 onward allow for provisional measures, including bans, after an adverse analytical result.

It's a bit confusing, because the phrase "Provisional suspension" has been bandied around, which is used in a different section relating to suspensions after A sample positives. However, 235+ allow for provisional bans in other circumstances.

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atlaz [180 posts] 1 year ago
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The problem is that had Tinkoff kept Kreuzinger at home, the UCI wouldn't have banned him. Once they started entering him in races again it was inevitable given the backlash of allowing Contador to race under appeal.

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kitkat [338 posts] 1 year ago
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Punkass wrote:

Shane Stokes put together an interview piece that does a great job of explaining the process, the timing, and why once it gets this far, it will be hard for a rider to prove innocence:

http://cyclingtips.com.au/2014/08/anti-doping-expert-parisotto-explains-...

That is a very insightful piece to the whole testing process. Thank you for the link. RK and indeed JTL are sunk by this through investigation.

In the long term this type of case should decrease as more riders have big bio-brother monitoring them from their earliest days in the pro peloton.

I don't think this is tokenistic by the UCI, I would say it costs a lot of money!

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Doctor Fegg [143 posts] 1 year ago
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Punkass wrote:

I don't think for one second that the UCI is actually hugely interested in participating in cleaning up cycling. To do so would require publicly admitting that the sport is as dirty as any other sport.

Hey, what?

Cycling's image problem over the past 15 years has been that it's seen as more dirty than any other sport. Much more dirty.

McQuaid refused to believe this. Cookson understands. I really don't think you need to worry about Cookson admitting that "the sport is dirty as any other sport". That was pretty much the whole point of his election.

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Colin Peyresourde [1673 posts] 1 year ago
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Well I hope the naysayers can spend the time reading the report. I get tired of explaining how and why the biopassport works. It's not simply a proof positive litmus test, but a catalogue of data. It doesn't stop doping, but it does control it....but it is just a test, and learning how to pass a test is really the part of the equation dopers focus on.

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Niall_K [1 post] 1 year ago
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I agree that the sport needs to clean up, but, the UCI has been implicated in almost as much scandal as FIFA, so when they place a suspension on a rider with less than 24hrs before the start of the race for anomalies found back in 2012 it stinks of corruption of some kind!
Anomalies don't always mean that a rider is guilty of doping, illness, injury and prescription medication can cause anomalies in a biological passport. Nothing is proven on any of the tests so far, so what happened to innocent till proven guilty?
If the UCI don't have sanctions for anomalies on biological passport then by suspending a rider and allowing that rider to take them to task with CAS, they are leaving themselves open to having the whole case blown out of the water and labeled a witch hunt and having the new UCI leadership branded as being as inept as the previous administration.