Contador defended by Pereiro, won’t race Oviedo criterium after all
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Saturday, October 23, 2010

Contador defended by Pereiro, won’t race Oviedo criterium after all

by VeloNation Press at 8:44 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France
 
2006 Tour winner believes in Contador, criticizes UCI

Alberto ContadorContrary to earlier reports, Alberto Contador will not race in the second edition of the Criterium Ciudad de Oviedo on October 30. Contador's press agent released a statement Friday night, saying that Contador won't be racing until the doping case is settled.

Despite a declaration from the organizers that Contador will be competing and the fact that Contador is mentioned as one of the riders in a race including Olympic Champion Samuel Sánchez, Contador's agent Jacinto Vidarte was quite clear about it. “Contador never had the intention to race the Criterium Ciudad de Oviedo or any other race, until the current situation is resolved.”

The organizers have since released an additional statement, confirming that Contador won't be at their event. They have not named a replacement yet. In the statement Contador is being quoted as saying that he currently has no intentions to race at all. "He wants to be very strict and respectful about it and stay inactive while the International Cycling Union [UCI] makes a decision in his case," Marca wrote.

In the meantime, Oscar Pereiro criticized the UCI for handling the case in an interview with Spanish radio Cadena SER. "It can't be that a rider of the level like Contador is in this situation. In a weird way, they announced a positive two months after the Tour finished and they don't know what to do. A rider of his level deserves reliable justice."

Pereiro was rewarded the 2006 Tour de France title more than one year after finishing second in Paris. It took that long for Floyd Landis to be officially disqualified and the current situation could well become the same. Contador has claimed that he ate tainted meat, with some experts backing his opinion.

Others see the opposite and the German public channel ARD criticized the UCI, albeit for other reasons than Pereiro. ARD claims that the UCI was trying to keep the case under the covers.

Pereiro believes in the innocence of Contador. "We are talking about a very respected rider, who is very consistent throughout the whole season. He doesn't have ups and downs in his form. He is a rider who does all his Tours at an extraordinary level, without being the big dominator, like Lance [Armstrong].”

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