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June 01, 2006

Labarta resigns: Will it save CV's Tour spot?

Eurosport | Labarta resigns over investigation

José Ignacio Labarta, the assistant director of Comunidad Valenciana, resigned today “so that the shadow of suspicion does not fall on [the CV squad] and their staff.”

Labarta is reportedly one of the figures involved in a blood doping operation headquartered in Madrid that is currently under investigation.

VeloNews quotes team manager Vicente Belda:

"If we are not in the Tour it will be the biggest injustice that can be committed in the world of cycling," Belda told reporters at the Euskal Bizikleta bike race. "We have a clear conscience. We hope the bad news stops right there. We´ve been doing things the past few years as they should be done. We have nothing to hide and have nothing that can make us guilty."

Eurosport also cites claims in the Spanish magazine Interviu that investigators taped clinic visits by Phonak's José Enrique Gutierrez and Santiago Botero, T-Mobile's Oscar Sevilla, and Liberty Seguros' Angel Vicioso, all of whom raced for Kelme when Eufemiano Fuentes was the team doctor.

Sevilla's T-Mobile team manager, Olaf Ludwig, is quoted on the team website that Sevilla “confirmed to me by phone that he hasn't had any contact with Fuentes.” As for the taped visits to the clinic? “The doctor he worked with had a clinic in the same building as Fuentes,” says Ludwig.

Posted by Frank Steele on June 1, 2006 in Doping, Jose Enrique Gutierrez, Santiago Botero, Top Stories, Tour news | Permalink

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