White sacked from Orica GreenEdge role due to US Postal Service doping
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Thursday, November 01, 2012

White sacked from Orica GreenEdge role due to US Postal Service doping

by VeloNation Press at 7:26 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
 
Australian team commissions external audit, will review all riders and staff

Matt WhiteLess than a year after the team was launched, Orica GreenEdge has announced that it is parting ways with sports director Matt White in connection with doping in cycling.

White was implicated in the USADA report into drug use on the US Postal Service team and since then Cycling Australia and Orica GreenEdge have been looking into his history. On October 13th he admitted using doping substances during his racing career and apologised for that.

“I am sad to say that I was part of a team where doping formed part of the team's strategy, and I too was involved in that strategy,” he said then. “My involvement is something I am not proud of and I sincerely apologise to my fans, media, family and friends who trusted me and also to other athletes in my era that consciously chose not to dope.”

He stood down from his Orica GreenEdge position pending the outcome of a review, and also did the same in relation to his role with CA’s National Men's High Performance Program as professional men's road coordinator. He was sacked from the latter position days later.

Orica GreenEdge announced today that it would take the same course of action in relation to the role he had with the team. “OGE has been awaiting the outcome of the ASADA process into Matthew White’s involvement in doping in the US Postal team,” it stated. “OGE had indicated that it would await the outcomes of this process before determining its next steps. However, following discussions with Matt it has been determined that he will leave OGE effective immediately.

Team owner Gerry Ryan said that the team’s reputation was crucial. “Orica-GreenEDGE is a clean team and our commitment to being clean has been a foundation principle of the team since the day of its inception,” he said.

Independent review announced:

Ryan explained that the team had decided on a course of action to ensure that the team moved forward in the right way. “To maintain public confidence in our strict adherence to this principle OGE has appointed an eminent and independent external expert to audit the rigour and effectiveness of the team’s anti-doping policies and procedures.”

The team has commissioned Nicki Vance in order to carry out the review. She was a start up director for the World Anti-Doping Agency, established the testing and international programs for the Australian Sports Drug Agency (ASDA) and headed up the Anti-Doping Program for the Sydney Organising Committee for the Olympic Games. She has been working as an independent anti-doping consultant since 2002.

According to the team, she will carry out the following roles during her review:

• Confirm that Orica-GreenEDGE’s anti-doping policies, protocols and recruitment procedures are world’s best practice and are being implemented without exception; and

• Recommend and oversee the implementation of any necessary enhancements.

In addition to that, the team plans a pro-active review of all riders and team members in order to assuage any public questions which may exist about the current lineup.

Ryan recognises that the sport is at a crucial point. “Professional cycling is at a cross roads. The future of the sport is being determined by what we do today,” he said. “OGE will not step back from taking any necessary decision to protect the integrity of the sport and the team and to restore the confidence of cycling fans around the world.

“It’s time to put our values to work. OGE believes a hard-line approach is an essential pre-requisite to continue in the sport with credibility.”

The team’s general manager Shayne Bannan echoed this and said that being a new team, that it was important that Orica GreenEdge shows initiative at this point. He said that it would ‘continue to have a strong voice in the AIGCP (the professional team’s association) in order to seek unity and a common path on these crucial issues,’ and that the teams will meet the UCI at the beginning of next month to determine the best way forward.

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