herald

Monday 21 January 2019

Plenty for fans to chew on as Contador and Armstrong spring some surprises

One in and one out! Alberto Contador is back in the peloton and racing in Portugal whilst Lance Armstrong has hung up his wheels again.

Both were major surprises which caught everybody off guard. At the end of business in Spain on Tuesday, a four-member panel issued a report clearing the 2010 Tour de France winner of a doping violation in connection with his positive test for trace amounts of clenbuterol in a sample submitted on the Tour de France's second rest day.

The ruling by the panel, endorsed by the Spanish Cycling Federation, allowed Contador back into the peloton in time for the Tour of Portugal.

The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) and WADA have the option of appealing the Spanish Federation's ruling to the International Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Both respective organisations have the right to challenge the ruling. But they must submit an appeal within 30 days of last Tuesday's decision.

Lance's decision was also a surprise, as he was committed to the Tour of California later in the year.

It looks as if UCI President, Pat McQuaid, will be a busy man in the next couple of months in the light of developments, with two of the biggest names in cycling causing ripples far and wide this week.

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