Man who supplied Contador's 'contaminated' beef made president of Spanish cycling federation

Lopez Cerron said he brought the meat from Spain because the food in the Tour team's hotel kitchen wasn't good enough

by Sarah Barth   December 1, 2012  

Alberto Contador

The man who delivered the "contaminated" beef to Alberto Contador, that saw the rider stripped of his 2010 Tour de France title, has been named president of the Spanish cycling federation, the RFEC.

Lopez Cerron, a former pro cyclist himself, bought the allegedly contaminated meat in Irun, a town on Spain's border with France in the Basque country, before taking it to Astana's team hotel in Pau, France where it was eaten by Contador on the 2010 Tour de France's second rest day, Eurosport reports.

That was Contador's excuse, anyway, when he tested positive for clenbuterol, a banned substance, the positive result being disclosed only two months after he had won the race.

Contador returned to cycling this August after serving six months of a mainly backdated two year ban eventually handed to him after an 18-month battle, and went on to win the Vuelta in September.

Cerron, who organises the Tour of Castilla and Leon in Spain, was voted in at an assembly in Madrid on Saturday, the RFEC said.

Cerron explained to El Periodico that he was asked by the cook to bring to the hotel, after a rest day, "a sirloin for riders, [because] here the meat is very bad".

"I decided to get it before crossing the border and I did in Irun [in Spain].  I did not know that town, so I parked the car, I started to look until I found a butcher. I bought a whole beef tenderloin," he says.

He arrived in Pau and gave the meat to the chef, who had to cook in the Astana team bus as he was not allowed to use the hotel kitchen.

"Vinokourov... he was very hungry and was the first to go down to the restaurant... He had finished the meal." Vinokurov, however, passed doping control the next morning and did not show any abnormal value of clenbuterol.

Contador was found to have a minute dose – 50 picograms per millilitre – of the controversial performance enhancing drug clenbuterol  in his system, an amount which was 40 times below the minimum requirement of detection capability required by WADA, although there is no minimum threshold for a rider to test positive.

Initially, the RFEC decided to ban the rider for a year, who then appealed and had the ban quashed by the the Spanish Federation appeal committee, a decision that provoked accusations outside Spain of political interference.

The UCI and WADA appealed the decision of the Spanish Federation to the Court of Arbitration in Sport (CAS) for a final ruling.

The CAS eventually decided in February this year that Contador should be stripped of the results obtained in the 2010 Tour de France and later, which also caused him to lose his 2011 Giro d'Italia victory. He was also suspended until 5 August 2012, and his contract with Team Saxo Bank was annulled, although he returned to Bjarne Riis's outfit after serving his ban.

There was always doubt over Contador's explanation, despite several prominent experts saying that contaminated food could contain clenbuterol, as in 2008 and 2009, only one animal sample came back positive for clenbuterol out of 83,203 animal samples tested by EU member nations. Out of 19,431 animal tests in Spain over the same period, there were no samples that came back positive for clenbuterol, according to The Guardian.

 

14 user comments

Oldest firstNewest firstBest rated

Holy Cow Batman!!

antonio

antonio's picture

posted by antonio [1018 posts]
1st December 2012 - 17:04

2 Likes

No-one in here but us hens, said the fox.

Last night I would have considered trading a very loud baby for a really nice bike.

posted by notfastenough [3474 posts]
1st December 2012 - 17:15

7 Likes

Who drug tests the cows? Moo-C-I?

I'll get my coat...

posted by pwake [313 posts]
1st December 2012 - 21:10

4 Likes

Ha ha ha ha you couldn't make it up. What is next smackheads in charge of customs.

cidermart's picture

posted by cidermart [470 posts]
1st December 2012 - 23:06

4 Likes

Good to see the spanish take a good strong stance on doping..

Christ, they make even Pat look straight & honest!

posted by gazza_d [273 posts]
2nd December 2012 - 8:07

3 Likes

Am I missing something here. Did this guy buy and deliver some meat to the team cook, or did he deliver drugs, or did he deliver nothing and is part of a fabricated story.

If he did deliver the meat, then what has he done wrong? - nothing as far as I can see.

Confused

posted by daddyELVIS [453 posts]
2nd December 2012 - 10:28

5 Likes

clenbuterol in European meat is pretty much unheard of. China and Mexico have problems but are not allowed to export meat to the EU.

I've also read the amount detected was too low to do anything and his other tests were clear. Another theory is a tainted blood transfusion.

posted by musicalmarc [60 posts]
2nd December 2012 - 11:04

6 Likes

This whole pathetic affair is like someone at school not doing their homework, making up a blatantly ridiculous excuse and being give top marks for it. I can't see the bloke now without feeling pissed off, especially when he was back on his bike after 6 months. Shame on him, his team and the UCI.

posted by Jon [35 posts]
2nd December 2012 - 12:19

8 Likes

daddyELVIS wrote:
Am I missing something here. Did this guy buy and deliver some meat to the team cook, or did he deliver drugs, or did he deliver nothing and is part of a fabricated story.

If he did deliver the meat, then what has he done wrong? - nothing as far as I can see.

Confused


Well said.

posted by The Rumpo Kid [590 posts]
2nd December 2012 - 13:49

5 Likes

daddyELVIS wrote:
Am I missing something here. Did this guy buy and deliver some meat to the team cook, or did he deliver drugs, or did he deliver nothing and is part of a fabricated story.

If he did deliver the meat, then what has he done wrong? - nothing as far as I can see.

Confused

The suggestion is that the meat story is bullocks (sorry, couldn't resist) and therefore, that this fella has (probably delivered nothing, or even did deliver a steak, which is now the scapegoat) corroborated a lie to cover up another reason for clenbuterol being in AC's system.

Last night I would have considered trading a very loud baby for a really nice bike.

posted by notfastenough [3474 posts]
3rd December 2012 - 13:14

3 Likes

notfastenough wrote:
daddyELVIS wrote:
Am I missing something here. Did this guy buy and deliver some meat to the team cook, or did he deliver drugs, or did he deliver nothing and is part of a fabricated story.

If he did deliver the meat, then what has he done wrong? - nothing as far as I can see.

Confused

The suggestion is that the meat story is bullocks (sorry, couldn't resist) and therefore, that this fella has (probably delivered nothing, or even did deliver a steak, which is now the scapegoat) corroborated a lie to cover up another reason for clenbuterol being in AC's system.


Exactly. AC's blood sample had traces of clenbuterol, and plasticizers (which indicate the blood has been stored in blood bags, ala blood transfusion.) Plus, more than half of the riders on the team ate the same beef, and no one else tested positive for clenbuterol. All the evidence shows that the steak and the clenbuterol had nothing to do with each other, which makes this guy part of a conspiracy to cover up doping.

posted by TheBigMong [218 posts]
3rd December 2012 - 16:23

6 Likes

TheBigMong wrote:
All the evidence shows that the steak and the clenbuterol had nothing to do with each other, which makes this guy part of a conspiracy to cover up doping.

Maybe it just means he bought an uncontaminated steak, which was then used as an excuse by AC?

posted by The Rumpo Kid [590 posts]
3rd December 2012 - 21:17

5 Likes

TheBigMong wrote:
notfastenough wrote:
daddyELVIS wrote:
Am I missing something here. Did this guy buy and deliver some meat to the team cook, or did he deliver drugs, or did he deliver nothing and is part of a fabricated story.

If he did deliver the meat, then what has he done wrong? - nothing as far as I can see.

Confused

The suggestion is that the meat story is bullocks (sorry, couldn't resist) and therefore, that this fella has (probably delivered nothing, or even did deliver a steak, which is now the scapegoat) corroborated a lie to cover up another reason for clenbuterol being in AC's system.


Exactly. AC's blood sample had traces of clenbuterol, and plasticizers (which indicate the blood has been stored in blood bags, ala blood transfusion.) Plus, more than half of the riders on the team ate the same beef, and no one else tested positive for clenbuterol. All the evidence shows that the steak and the clenbuterol had nothing to do with each other, which makes this guy part of a conspiracy to cover up doping.

Yep, I'm right - I am missing something....evidence. How can you say this guy is part of any cover-up? He brought meat for the team (aparently under instruction from the cook) - that AC decided to blame the meat for his positive test in no way implicates this guy as being involved in doping. The fact is he might be involved in doping, but then so might anyone involved in cycling at the moment. But without any actual evidence, you can't say who is and who isn't. If I'm ever in the dock, I hope you guys are not on the jury - who needs evidence, hey?

posted by daddyELVIS [453 posts]
3rd December 2012 - 21:58

5 Likes

I did say he might have delivered the steak which is now the scapegoat. The point is that I don't believe AC. What impact that has on this fella is the unknown, but it certainly casts a funny shadow his way.

Last night I would have considered trading a very loud baby for a really nice bike.

posted by notfastenough [3474 posts]
5th December 2012 - 19:16

6 Likes