Contador won’t appeal, says he doesn’t have confidence in sports courts
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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Contador won’t appeal, says he doesn’t have confidence in sports courts

by VeloNation Press at 6:58 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
Claims anti-doping system doesn’t work properly

Alberto ContadorAlberto Contador has confirmed that he won’t appeal the two year, partially-backdated suspension which was handed down on him by the Court of Arbitration for Sport on February 6th.

The Spaniard is currently blocked from competition until August 5th, and previously said that he might consider appealing the CAS verdict to the Swiss Federal Court.

However he has now ruled out this course of action, believing that there would be little chance of success.

“After talking with lawyers, they tell me they see little future, or none at all, in filing an appeal to the standard courts of Switzerland,” he told El Mundo. “Because, even if they [the courts] accept it, the case would return to CAS. The deadline for this option has passed, but not so about going elsewhere. The case is not closed, I don’t know what we will do.”

Contador tested positive for Clenbuterol during the 2010 Tour de France, which he won. He fought the case and initially was cleared by the Spanish Federation RFEC in February of last year. However this verdict was appealed to CAS by both WADA and the UCI and, after several delays, the case was finally heard last November.

CAS announced its verdict in February, ruling against Contador and removing all of his results since his positive test.

Continuing to insist on his innocence, he confirmed to El Mundo that he doesn’t have faith in the current system. “I have lost confidence in the sports courts. I have not doped and I am punished,” he said, adding what he wanted to see to restore his faith.

“[They should] reform the regulation on Clenbuterol, because it is obsolete,” he said. “There have been continuous positive cases which have appeared since mine. I think that there have been more than 100 cases.”

Contador insisted that he did not intentionally take Clenbuterol and also said that he has not doped during his career. The WADA case before CAS highlighted what it said were fluctuations in his blood profile, with a transfusion being suggested as a possible source of the Clenbuterol, but CAS said that there was insufficient evidence that this could have caused the positive test.

“The Panel concluded that both the meat contamination scenario and the blood transfusion scenario were, in theory, possible explanations for the adverse analytical findings, but were however equally unlikely," it ruled. "In the Panel’s opinion, on the basis of the evidence adduced, the presence of clenbuterol was more likely caused by the ingestion of a contaminated food supplement."

Contador has continued to train during his suspension and is likely to target the Vuelta a Espana when he returns. It is as yet unclear what team he will compete with, but both he and Saxo Bank have suggested that they could resume their collaboration.

While WADA raised questions, he insists that he has nothing to hide when he does race again. “I have always believed in the fight against doping. At all times I have been and continue to be available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year for me to make the necessary controls,” he said. “I have always believed in the test system, since it is necessary for sport to punish cheaters and to defend the innocent, but I have now seen that the system does not work as I thought.”


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