Schumacher wants acquittal
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Thursday, October 8, 2009

Schumacher wants acquittal

by Bjorn Haake at 11:57 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping

Stefan Schumacher, currently suspended for EPO-doping, is asking for an retroactive acquittal. His plea follows the announcement that none of the 2008 Tour de France re-tests showed any signs of CERA, an EPO substance. Schumacher claims there is a high chance of a false-positive test.

His lawyer Michael Lehner published a brief statement, saying that "Stefan Schumacher is asking AFLD [French anti-doping agency] to retract the false-positive analysis result connected to him. He was very much exonerated by the results. He has to feel like a victim of AFLD politics, in which - for whatever reasons - he was was chosen as a 'guinea pig'. Without sufficient test basis some supposedly positive analysis results magically appeared."

According to German magazine Focus, the test was only approved on July 1, 2009. Therefore, Schumacher claims that both his Tour de France samples (September/October 2008) and his Olympic road race sample (spring 2009) were taken while the test was still being refined. Schumacher says that the chance of a false-positive test was very high.

Schumacher is suspended until January 2011. He is currently appealing his case to CAS, the Court of Arbitration for Sports in Lausanne. On his website, Schumacher has compiled the charges against AFLD. He cites the following mistakes:

  • His samples were not anonymous (which should have resulted in dropping the case)
  • Documents talked about irregularities in his urine samples (when blood samples were performed)
  • Samples were not transported in one of two recognized transportation systems (plastic sacs were used instead)
  • Samples were stored at temperatures of up to 18C (allowed are 4C)
  • Various documents positions in the tables didn't match up
  • Two documents addressed him as "Michael Schumacher"

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