Giro d’Italia organiser expresses frustration at Contador case timeline
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Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Giro d’Italia organiser expresses frustration at Contador case timeline

by Ben Atkins at 10:21 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Giro d'Italia
 
Corsa Rosa organiser now faced with the task of rewriting the results of its 2011 race, but cannot change the memories

michele acquaroneRCS Sport, the organiser of the Giro d’Italia, has officially acknowledged the decision to suspend 2011 race winner Alberto Contador for his positive clenbuterol test at the 2010 Tour de France, but expressed dissatisfaction with the amount of time that it took the case to reach its conclusion. The race is just one of those that now faces the re-writing of its record books, to remove the Spanish rider from its results.

“RCS Sport, the organisers of the Giro d’Italia, acknowledge the decision of the Court of Arbitration for Sport regarding Alberto Contador,” reads an official statement. “However we feel it is important to highlight how the time taken to reach a final verdict has affected events like the Giro d’Italia, held so long after the start of the case.”

Contador took the iconic race leader’s maglia rosa after winning the ninth stage, to the top of Mount Etna, and held it to the finish in Milano two weeks later. On the way to the finish he also won the mountain time trial from Belluno to Nevegal, finished second in the stages to the Grossglockner and Monte Zoncolan, and third to Val di Fassa and the final Milano time trial stage; he had also finshed second in Tropea, the day before Etna, and RCS Sport now faces the task of undoing all of these results.

RCS Sport Director General Michele Acquarone has already expressed personal dissatisfaction at the situation on his Twitter feed.

“Bad day,” he wrote on Monday after the verdict was announced. “How can you explain to the thousands of children screaming along the streets that everything they saw last May was fake?”

While it is easily possible to put a line through Contador’s name in the 2011 Giro’s results, it is not possible to alter the memories of those who saw the race, or to change the hours of video and thousands of pictures taken.

RCS Sport is now faced with a similar task to that of ASO, the organiser of the Tour de France, who must rewrite the history of its 2010 race; just as it did in 2007, after Floyd Landis was disqualified from the 2006 edition.

“We hope that in future, the judicial process will ensure that the Giro d’Italia never has to face a similar situation out of respect for its fans and the riders who compete in its races,” continues the RCS Sport statement.

“RCS Sport and the Giro d’Italia will continue their strict programme of anti-doping controls and the development of preventative action and education programmes to continue the fight against doping,” it concludes.

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