Motorised bike investigation continues, YouTube author heard
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Thursday, June 24, 2010

Motorised bike investigation continues, YouTube author heard

by Samuel Morrison at 5:08 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Public prosecutor Raffaele Guariniello hears from YouTube author, Michele Bufalino

A sporting fraud investigation into the possible use of motorised bikes in the professional peloton continues in Italy. Journalist At the suggestion of Amore & Vita Conad team owner Ivano Fanini, Italian journalist Michele Bufalino, who published a YouTube video of Fabian Cancellara, was heard yesterday in Turin by public prosecutors.

Bufalino of Pisa posted a video on YouTube, May 29, following an article in Il Giornale and a report on Rai television about battery-powered, motorised bikes. His video pointed to Cancellara's finger movement during his winning attacks in the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix, which the Bufalino said was when Cancellara engaged the motor. (

"This video explains how mechanic doping may be done," said Bufalino in his video. "We don't accuse anybody of this, we just invite you to think about [it]."

In Italy, gambling on sports is legal and altering the results of a bicycle race by doping or any other means constitutes sporting fraud. Public prosecutor Raffaele Guariniello opened a sporting fraud investigation June 11 and he and his assistant, Luogotenente Buccola, has met with Bufalino and others.

Last Monday, June 14, Guariniello heard from former professional Davide Cassani, who presented an example of a motorised bike on Rai television during the Giro d'Italia. The bike reportedly came from a Hungarian engineer living in Pisa, Istvan Varjas. Varjas will meet with Guariniello in the coming days.

During Rai's footage, Cassani said, "The person we got the bike from verified to us that some professionals have used it."

The motor can reportedly produce 100 watts for up to 90 minutes and fits completely in the seat tube. Austrian company Gruber Assist introduced a similar motor at the 2008 Eurobike show. (

Guariniello is a recognised name in Italian sports thanks to his persistence in an investigation of Italy's top football club, Juventus. His case saw the team's doctor receive a 22-month suspended prison sentence for administering EPO to the club's players. The doctor escaped the sentence thanks to an appeals process that exceeded the statute of limitations.


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