Olympics: Brailsford and Hoy give thoughts over possible Millar participation
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Saturday, April 21, 2012

Olympics: Brailsford and Hoy give thoughts over possible Millar participation

by VeloNation Press at 9:11 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping, Olympics
 
Final CAS ruling expected next week

Chris HoyBritish Cycling’s performance director Dave Brailsford and its top Olympic athlete Chris Hoy have expressed different positions in relation to WADA’s challenge on the British Olympic Association’s lifetime doping ban, with the former willing to accept a change and the latter arguing that the ban should remain.

Brailsford told PA that he believes that lifetime Olympic bans for serious offences should be introduced across the world but, if CAS overturns the current BOA ruling, that he’d be willing to consider David Millar for selection.

In 2004 the Scottish rider admitted using EPO and was handed a two year ban. The BOA position makes him ineligible for the London Olympics, but this is expected to be overturned by CAS next week.

“My job is to pick the fastest team, the best team that can win that race in London," said Brailsford. "It is not my job to decide if somebody is eligible or not.

"I will get shown a list of people who are eligible, then I will look at performance and decide who is most likely to get the result and I will pick them."

Chris Hoy – who would be on the Great Britain cycling lineup with Millar if the latter ultimately goes to London, believes that the deterrent effect is too big to abandon.

"It will be sad if we have to fall in line with the rest of the world," the four time Olympic gold medallist told the BBC. "I don't see anything wrong with having more stringent rules. I think it should be the rest of the world that's falling in line with our rules.”

"If you are caught for taking drugs, then you will not be allowed to compete in the Olympic Games. That to me is a good incentive not to take drugs. If you take that away, are you taking a step back in the fight against drugs?"

Millar said recently that even if he is cleared for selection, that he could decline the slot. He said that he was concerned about the possible reaction, and that it might be more simple not to take part.

However it remains to be seen if he’d change his mind if CAS does indeed rule against the ban.

WADA, which took the action against the BOA, has stated that it is not opposed to the idea of tougher penalties. However it argues that these have to remain consistent across the board, with all countries abiding by the same code rather than some having tougher sanctions that the others.

It has told the BOA that it is able to seek a change in the Code, although that is something that wouldn’t come into effect until long after London 2012.

Brailsford said that he believed a change could be good, but that he’d abide by whatever CAS said. “I think Wada is important and a global consistency is important.

"If we get consistency then we need to look at the sanctions and I think they need to become more severe. I would, without a doubt, try and encourage Wada to review their sanctions.

"I think you could categorise doping offences. You [could] have the A category, which [would be] a lifetime ban. If you go to the extent of blood doping and buying EPO it is so pre-meditated, you are not doing it for any other reason than to cheat.

"For me that is a life ban. You know what you are doing, you took the risks, you got caught, you are out of the sport. Then I'd have a B category of six years which may be for contaminates or the misuse of certain substances. Then I'd have a C category for minor infringements, which could be discretionary."

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