Stefan Schumacher returns to racing this month with Team Miche
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Monday, August 16, 2010

Stefan Schumacher returns to racing this month with Team Miche

by Ben Atkins at 12:31 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
 
German returns from doping ban with the team that gave Michael Rasmussen his return

stefan schumacherStefan Schumacher has signed a contract with the Italian Miche team for the rest of the season as the German makes his return to the sport. Schumacher was banned from the sport for two years after being one of a number of riders to test positive for CERA, the third generation EPO, in 2008.

He tested positive after winning both long time trials of the Tour de France, and traces of CERA were also retrospectively found in his urine samples from the Beijing Olympics.

“Stefan will now ride for the Italian ‘Team Miche’”, reads a statement on the German’s personal website. “He has signed a contract with the Continental team for 2010, with an option for 2011. Stefan intends to start for the Italians for the first time in the “Giro del Veneto” on 28 August.”

Coincidentally, August 28th is the exact date that Schumacher’s ban ends, set by the Court for Arbitrtion in Sport.

"To me it's about as fast as possible to find the race rhythm," Schumacher told German newspaper De Teckbote. "In the fall there are some races still to go, to show myself, and to see where I stand."

"I know I've made mistakes and that trust in me is now exhausted," he added. "I have nothing to add other than the two years [suspension] were the worst of my life; it’s now about looking forward."

As a Continental level team Miche rarely makes the headlines; the only two victories of the season so far have been taken by Polish rider Przemyslaw Niemiec.

The team made the news in a similar way to this earlier in the year though, as it signed Michael Rasmussen on his return to European racing. The Dane had served a similar two-year ban after lying to anti-doping authorities about his whereabouts on the build up to the 2007 Tour de France.

Miche is a rather smaller team than Schumacher may have intended to sign for, having declared a desire to ride the Vuelta a España, which starts on the same day as the Giro del Veneto. Like Rasmussen before him though, the German has likely found that the climate in the sport makes a rider with his past a less attractive option for the larger teams.

Also like Rasmussen though, Schumacher has a clause built in to his contract with Miche, which allows him to leave the Italian team if a ProTour outfit comes calling.

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