Iljo Keisse takes case to Belgian Court of Appeal again
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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Iljo Keisse takes case to Belgian Court of Appeal again

by Ben Atkins at 8:33 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
 
Quick Step rider could have final verdict by April 26th

iljo keisseThe Iljo Keisse saga took a step towards conclusion yesterday, as the Quick Step rider took his case to the Belgian Court of Appeal once more, according to Het Laatste Nieuws. The court made a provisional ruling on November 10th last year, but postponed its definitive ruling until a number of points in the case could be clarified.

Keisse originally tested positive for cathine and HCT after winning the Gent Six Days in November 2008; he was initially suspended for two years, of which he served 11 months, before being cleared by the Belgian federation, on appeal, due to a lack of scientific evidence. Unfortunately for the Belgian though, his case was taken to the Court for Arbitration in Sport (CAS) by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) in July 2010 and his ban was reinstated.

Since he had returned to the peloton for several months, the date of the end of Keisse’s suspension was pushed out to July 2011.

In November last year, with the invitations to several Six-Day races in his pocket, Keisse took his case to the Belgian Court of Appeal, which ruled in his favour. The UCI decided though, that, since the CAS was an international court and the Belgian court a domestic one, the Belgian courts decision only applied to races inside Belgium.

So far this season, with his Quick Step team keeping faith in him, Keisse has raced a number of Belgian races, including last week’s Scheldeprijs, but has taken no results to speak of.

The UCI has been given until April 26th to present the full facts of the case, at which point he could be cleared, but the court will present its final verdict on May 24th.

Should Keisse be unsuccessful there seems to be a little confusion over the date he would be allowed to return. According to a letter from Quick Step team manager Patrick Lefevere his suspension should end on July 5th, but the court has also quoted the date of August 6th.

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