Jan Ullrich takes up business role with high-altitude system company
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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Jan Ullrich takes up business role with high-altitude system company

by Shane Stokes at 12:48 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
German opts for legal blood enhancement

Having left the sport of cycling under strained circumstances in 2006, former Tour de France winner Jan Ullrich is putting his backing behind legal methods of hematocrit enhancement and has become involved with the Lowoxygen company.

The 1997 Tour champion has become a shareholder and director in the Dubai-based enterprise, which enables users to mimic the oxygen concentrations seen at different altitudes. An effect of similar systems is to stimulate the effects of staying at altitude, thus boosting the hematocrit levels and oxygen transport systems in the body.

Other methods of achieving the same results through the use of blood transfusions and hormones such as EPO are banned by WADA and sporting bodies. Ullrich has always denied their use, but is the subject of a UCI action before the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Its conclusion is due at the end of this month

The German’s endorsement comes in a year when he has returned to cycling, five years after his retirement, and taken part in several Gran Fondos. He has credited his resumption of cycling as helping him overcome emotional burnout.

The new role enables him to extend his link with the sporting world. “I am delighted with this and to start my new job,” the German said in a statement. “As part of a competent team and equipped with a unique technology for high altitude, we want in the future to assist more than just top athletes.” He explained that the system can also help those with disturbed metabolic processes and type 2 diabetes, plus the aged.

The company stated that it works with numerous Olympic, World and European champions, as well as national teams. Ullrich is due to take part in the Gran Fondo Miami this coming Sunday. He’s underlined the effect getting back to the sport has had on him. “After some private difficulties in the past, I have found the love for cycling again,” the 37 year old said recently. “Cycling was always the most important part of my life and I now find it enjoyable again.”

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