UCI: Rasmussen must pay to race again
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Thursday, July 23, 2009

UCI: Rasmussen must pay to race again

by VeloNation Press at 12:16 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
If Danish cyclist Michael Rasmussen intends to return to cycling when his two-year suspension ends on July 25th, the International Cycling Union (UCI) expect the former wearer of the Malliot Juane to pay 700,000 euros in order to fulfill his obligations to cycling's governing body.

"The Chicken", as he was known, was given a ban for failing to truthfully report his whereabouts during his preparations for the Tour de France in 2007. The charge was based on the fact that he had not co-operated with the anti-doping controls. The violation resulted in an unprecedented action by his Rabobank team. They pulled him out of the Tour de France after the 16th stage while he wearing the coveted yellow jersey. At the time, Rasmussen had a commanding lead in the race, and the move effectively handed Alberto Contador his first Grand Tour win.

In a statement the UCI said, "Mr Rasmussen signed the “Riders’ commitment to a new cycling”, in which he pledged to make a contribution to the anti-doping campaign equal to his annual salary in the event that he was given a suspension of two years or more as a result of a doping violation."

While the UCI remains clear on their opinion that the Dane should be prevented from competing until the sum is paid, they will honor the the Court of Arbitration for Sport's (CAS) decision to allow the rider to return to competition pending a decision by the CAS on riders’ obligations to honour their signed commitments.

Along with Rasmussen, Kazakh Alexandre Vinokourov has also appealed to the CAS in order to contest his pledge.

The governing body "strongly rejects" the attitude of both cyclists, as both have "committed serious violations of the anti-doping rules" and both have "rejected any form of reparation."

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