Friday, February 17, 2012

"Contador's ban unjust"

Entirely as expected, Samuel Sánchez was not too happy about the two-year ban handed out to friend Alberto Contador by CAS last week - even if it landed him on the 2010 Tour podium. Talking to home newspaper La Voz de Asturias, the Olympic champion outlined why.

"The ban imposed on Alberto was unjust and excessive - especially so considering CAS recognized he hadn't doped", he said. "It's totally out of the blue, so I'm not able to savour it (being promoted to third). Finishing on the podium in this manner doesn't make me happy at all as I've got no memories or emotions of the moment."

As the world's undisputed number one stage-racer now won't be able to line up in France in July, a host of riders are eyeing an opportunity to finish on the podium - or perhaps even land the big price. Samu though, for one, hasn't decided what to aim for in the race. Overall, stage, climber's jersey... all three?

"Once I start racing I'll make my mind up on what to aim for. First and foremost, though, I need to reach the same level of form as I did last year. We've started this season with the goal of bettering what we achieved last year, but that will be hard. But the least we can do is give it a shot!"

The newly-turned 34-year-old will kick off his 2012 campaign in Andalucía on Sunday, and the native of Oviedo is as eager as always to get started.

"I can't wait. Due to the bad weather, this winter seems to have been extra long. I've been travelling a lot to the south of Spain in order to train. Now it's time to see if I'm on track".

1 comment:

Stephen said...

I’m not sure about ‘unjust’ but it does seem perverse that you can get the same ban for ‘probably’ taking a contaminated supplement as you would for knowingly taking a season long course of EPO.
I know all the arguments in favour of standardising bans etc but its easy to understand how people like Samu have sympathy with Contador over this. Cancellara was interviewed after the judgement and spoke of how people like him live in fear of a positive caused by something they have eaten, however careful they are they can never be 100% certain that everything they put in their mouth is clean.


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