McQuaid defends dope testing

Reuters - Wed, 09 Jun 18:41:00 2010

International Cycling Union President Pat McQuaid has rejected accusations by French Anti-Doping Agency chief Pierre Bordry that drug tests are too predictable to be efficient.

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"This is a false statement. It is very serious from a legal point of view," McQuaid said.

"Riders are tested all day long and they are not aware of any specific times.

"In 2007, we did 1,500 out-of-competition tests. In 2009, we did 9,000 (2,500 urine, 6,500 blood). That's an average of 25 tests a day," the Irishman added.

Speaking to German TV channel ZDF on Tuesday, AFLD President Bordry said: "The doping controls are organised so that riders are aware before they intervene. There are not enough targeted and random checks, so it allows those who want to cheat to know the system perfectly."

The UCI and the AFLD have been at odds since last year's Tour de France, when Bordry accused the ruling body's anti-doping officers of giving the team of eventual winner Alberto Contador and seven-times champion Lance Armstrong preferential treatment.

Contador and Armstrong both rode for Astana last year and the team said at the time of the allegations they had always done what was asked by the testers.

The UCI defended their testing procedures and said they would not work with the AFLD in this year's Tour.

"Bordry is damaging cycling here. He wants to be the centre of the story, he wants to be the main man," McQuaid said.

"It is time for Mr Bordry to shut up."

McQuaid added that an unprecedented anti-doping programme had been implemented ahead of the Tour de France, which starts from Rotterdam on July 3.

"We have a long list of 334 riders and those have had two blood tests and two urine tests in the last two months," he explained.

"They will also get the same within the coming month. And we also have a list of 55 riders, like the favourites, who will have extra tests."

Teams taking part in the Tour de France were requested to hand organisers by April 2 a list of 15 Tour riders likely to make it into their final squads so they could be targeted by anti-doping authorities prior to the race.

Reuters

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