Anti-doping official doubts Contador will have to pay near-€2.5 million euro fine
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Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Anti-doping official doubts Contador will have to pay near-€2.5 million euro fine

by VeloNation Press at 5:33 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
 
Rasmussen and Van den Broeck react to yesterday’s sanction

Alberto ContadorAs the analysis and reaction continues after yesterday’s ruling against Alberto Contador by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, a Danish anti-doping official who has followed the case has said that he doubts the Spaniard will end up paying a massive fine.

In addition to the two year ban – mostly backdated – and the loss of results such as his 2010 Tour victory and 2011 Giro d’Italia triumph, Contador may have to hand over €2,485,000 to the UCI.

The governing body is demanding that sum from him under article 326 of its anti-doping regulations, which states that any rider suspended for two years or more must pay a fine equalling 70% of their gross income for the year in which the anti-doping violation occurred. Combined with the legal costs of his failed battle, it means that Contador is facing a very big bill.

In its ruling yesterday, CAS said that it would make a later judgement in relation to the imposition of this fine.

Jens Evald, a professor of law and the chairman of Anti-Doping Denmark doesn’t expect this scale of penalty will be imposed. “I do not expect Alberto Contador will have to pay anything near 18 million dollars in fines. Maybe a smaller amount, and perhaps nothing at all,” he told sporten.tv2.dk.

His belief stems from his reading of the judgement against Contador, in which the CAS panel decided that a contaminated supplement was the most likely source of the positive test result.

“In their ruling Monday, they have in a way taken a position on the compensation issue, because they have assumed that it was unlikely that Contador directly doped,” he explained.

Meanwhile fellow Dane Michael Rasmussen, who Contador battled with in the 2007 Tour until the then-Rabobank rider was thrown out of the race over whereabouts violations, has said that he expects the Spaniard to return in very strong form.

“I believe that we can already declare him the winner of the Vuelta a España,” he told Ekstra Bladet, “for Contador will come back very strongly. Riis won’t fire him…he’d otherwise have done it long ago.”

Rasmussen wasn’t surprised that the Spaniard was sanctioned, believing that would always be the case under the current regulations. “A 12-year child could have handed down the verdict after a very short time. The rules say very clearly that it does not matter where an illegal substance comes from. When it's in a doping test, it must lead to quarantine.”

He said a discussion could now take place as to whether or not those rules are fair.

Another rider, Jurgen Van den Broeck, has echoed Andy Schleck’s sentiments of yesterday. The Luxembourg rider said then that he didn’t consider himself as truly moving up the general classification into first place after Contador was disqualified; Van den Broeck, who was fifth in the 2010 Tour and stands to move up to fourth, has told Sporza that he also doesn’t consider that to be the case.

“The race is finished and I was fifth. For me, I stay fifth.”

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