Michael Boogerd responds to Floyd Landis’ accusations
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Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Michael Boogerd responds to Floyd Landis’ accusations

by Ben Atkins at 3:54 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France, Doping
 
“Bruises were due to anti-doping tests,” says retired Dutch champion

Michael BoogerdRetired Dutch rider Michael Boogerd has responded to accusations made by Floyd Landis that the former Dutch champion engaged in blood-doping during the Tour, according to wielerflits.nl. In an interview with Sunday Times journalist Paul Kimmage, the transcript of which is posted on the website nyvelocity.com, the disgraced American rider used Boogerd as an example as he illustrated the point that everybody in the peloton knew exactly what everybody else was doing.

“I remember one specific incident,” Landis said, “I think it was in 2003, and we had done a blood transfusion the night before and if you don’t do it exactly right, and hold it and keep the pressure on it, (it leaves a mark/bruise because) it’s a much bigger needle. (Next day) I was riding and Michael Boogard [sic] came up next to me and he pointed to my arm and just smiled and winked and then he pointed at his arm…like, ‘I got the same thing.’”

Speaking on Dutch radio station Radio 538 Boogerd denied that he had ever engaged in blood doping, and that any bruises he had would have actually been the result of the anti-doping effort.

"He did not say that I've used drugs, but he insinuates it," he said, correcting the interviewer’s first question. “I think half the peloton at that time rode around with bruises. That was because of the blood controls at the time. Nine out of ten times they put the needle into you, you got a bruise; when you walk into a hospital you get it exactly the same.”

“I don’t know why he has included me in it,” he continued. “Maybe it’s because of our argument in 2006. He showed no respect for the yellow jersey and I called him arrogant.”

Boogerd rode his entire career with the same team, signing for Wordperfect in 1993, which became Novell in 1995 and then Rabobank in 1996, and was a three-time champion of the Netherlands; he rode every Tour between 1996 and 2007, finishing all but the 2000 edition. The high point came in 1998, when he finished in fifth overall, but this position owes a lot to the number of riders and teams that abandoned the race in the wake of the Festina scandal.

He won two stages of the Tour, on his debut in 1996 and in 2002, and also won Paris-Nice and the Amstel Gold Race in 1999. Since his retirement in 2007 Boogerd has worked in a promotional capacity for Rabobank and as a summariser for Dutch and Belgian television.

As well as Boogerd, and Lance Armstrong and various members of the United States Postal team of which he was a member, Landis also specifically implicated Spanish rider Oscar Pereiro, the man who was eventually awarded the 2006 Tour that was taken from Landis.

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