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Riis 'leaving door open' for Rasmussen

Switch to SunGard Saxo Bank could mean chicken's return to the big time...

Michael Rasmussen could be back on the ProTour next year riding next to Alberto Contador. The Dane has made no secret of his desire to return to the big time and Bjarne Riis has been sounding positive about a possible move.

Rasmussen was kicked off the 2007 Tour de France while wearing the polka dot jersey, and was subsequently fired by Rabobank, after inconsistencies in his training records came to light. Former pro Davide Cassani spotted the big Dane training in the Dolomites when his diary said he was in Mexico, and Rasmussen was handed a ban for the deception.

The suspension was never popular in Denmark with many commentators feeling that Rasmussen was treated unfairly, so it's not a huge surprise to find that fellow countryman Riis, who admitted in 2007 that he had doped in the past, is considering offering 'the chicken' a return to the big time. Riis is quoted in The Copenhagen Post as saying he would ‘leave the door open’ for Rasmussen.

‘Naturally I’m interested,’ said Riis. ‘Michael deserves the chance to make a comeback. Whether it’s with me or someone else I don’t know, but I’m certainly going to consider him.’

Rasmussen for his part is naturally optimistic about the possible hook-up ‘For me it would be a perfect scenario to ride for Riis with Alberto Contador,’ he said. ‘I don’t think it’s an unrealistic hope but obviously it’s Bjarne’s decision in the end.’

Dave is a founding father of, having previously worked on Cycling Plus and What Mountain Bike magazines back in the day. He also writes about e-bikes for our sister publication ebiketips. He's won three mountain bike bog snorkelling World Championships, and races at the back of the third cats.

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skippy | 13 years ago

Seem to recall that Rassmussen was wearing a yellow shirt when sent home ! 2007 rest day was in Tignes and it was the first time i did not ride with the holder of the "Maillot Jeune" on a rest day,e returning i had gone to see Alain M. of the French Paralympic Ski team in Seez and arrived back at the Tignes Barrage just as the "Rabbo guys" minus Rass were heading back to their hotel. Caught up with the D.S.(decker) late afternoon when things were abuzz so was not surprised the next day to hear enroute to the finish of the "surprise farewell"!

MY Requirement for punishment of drug cheats is 4 year suspension from the WHOLE Cycle Industry work environment with remission of part of the period for full confession and naming of all involved in their CHEATING ACTIVITIES ! On return to competition they start back at two levels lower so that they have to wait two years before being in the money once again.

WHO can afford to support the pharmacy on peanuts after 4 years of no income, should make most think about the consequences of a "Weakness of character"!
Guess what , even with this in place , there will be "Rotten Apples who think they are clever enough to beat the system

Jon Burrage | 13 years ago

I wish the whole operation puerto thing had gotten blown wide open. The Valverde, Contador and countless others along with certain high ranking spanish tennis players and international footballers would have a lot more explaining to do and a lot less cycling/serving/shooting.

fiftyacorn | 13 years ago

great - just what the sport needs - more 'reformed' dopers

i wish the cycling media would stop covering riders who have been caught doping. im sick of magazines having dopers on the front covers. If these riders didnt get publicity then their value to sponsors would decrease

alotronic | 13 years ago

Riis employs Rasmussen... I guess he's done his time, but it looks pretty awful. Headline should be something like:

"No syringe left uncapped in search for Contador's climbing domestique".

Riss says "I'd give blood for a good climber".

Or simply...

Dope employs Dope in PR clusterf**k.

eddie11 | 13 years ago

I guess hes served his sentence and he wouldn't be a bad mountain domestique for contador.

handlebarcam | 13 years ago

Contador should register as a charity. This year Vino, next year possibly Rasmussen: he is becoming a one-man drugs cheat rehabilitation outreach programme.

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