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November 10, 2006

T-Mobile angry at Basso signing

Eurosport | T-Mobile slam Discos over Basso

T-Mobile, who dumped Jan Ullrich, his personal coach, and most of their team management in the wake of the Operación Puerto investigation, says Discovery Channel is violating an agreement between teams by signing 2006 Giro winner Ivan Basso, formerly of CSC.

“We are astonished at the move of Ivan Basso to Discovery,” the German outfit announced in a statement. “We find it inconceivable that they have agreed to sign him, as he must first prove his total innocence against the allegations made against him, just like Jan Ullrich, and only then should he be able to look for a team.”

Discovery Channel director Johan Bruyneel says the team and Basso consulted 4 “specialist lawyers -- a Swiss, a Frenchman, a Spaniard, and an Italian -- and they informed us there was nothing to stop us signing Basso.”

Posted by Frank Steele on November 10, 2006 in Ivan Basso, Jan Ullrich | Permalink


let me get this straight, he has to "Prove his innocence" first? what kind of socialist crap is that?!? with that logic we can accuse anyone of anything and make them prove they didn't do it! that would bar anyone who is at the top level from competing anywhere. if they really want to make it stick shouldn't the accusers prove guilt? i know it's europe but come on people we are not in the dark ages of democracy where you had to prove you were not a heretic or witch by dying in fire or drowning.

Posted by: jsttri at Nov 10, 2006 5:23:10 PM

I reposted to correct an error that I found:

My Gut reaction, I think the European need to forgive, forget, and move on after Operacion Puerto. Why is it in cycling, if you screw up, you don't get a second chance? It seems like the Europeans want to force these riders out and not let them compete ever again. Thank God for Discovery for having the balls to do what’s right because if you screwed up or got FALSELY caught up in a media circus or were falsely accused wouldn’t you want a second chance . Besides, who has the right to take someone's livelihood away from them? Does it strike anyone else as odd/ironic that it was a team with Texas roots that did what was right for the sport? It must have been that good ol' Texas independence...

Posted by: speedemononskis at Nov 12, 2006 12:46:30 AM

blah blah blah. If drugs are not fought against, there will be no more sport. Just entertainment for the vacous masses. CSC were presented with enough evidence to remove Basso from the TdF under the code of ethics relating to suspicion of doping - the team would not remove the likely winner easily. Basso has not been cleared, the Spanish judge has advised that federations cannot use the information provided until the legal process to determine exactly what happened has finished. The fact that Disco can ignore the circumstantial evidence and sign Basso just shows they are a team that cares only about winning at any cost and unfortunately casts a cloud over the achievements of LA.

Posted by: jon at Nov 13, 2006 6:17:34 AM

Being accused of doing something wrong, suspected of doping, or being under investigation, or even in-trial puts a high-profile athlete in a lot of trouble itself. But in no circumstance he can be considered guilty without the verdict. Look at how many other athletes are accused or in trials for things. But they never get suspended for being accused ....

Codes of ethics in US and Europe are apparently the opposites.

Disco's code is the basic -- "you are innocent until proven guilty". CSC and T-Mobile code of ethics is "you are guilty until proven innocent"!!!!!!

Of course people living in America cannot understand why a Dark Age code still exists in European cyclism!!!

This has nothing to do with "trying to win at all costs" and LA.

Posted by: wir10 at Nov 18, 2006 9:26:06 AM

I love our sport (the colorful peleton, the personal suffering, etc.) but I am greatly disappointed in Discovery for hiring a cyclist that is "circumstancially" caught up in the biggest anti - drug raid in the history of our sport: Operation Puerto. And everyone is just "blowing it off" as if it is nothing. It's a bunch of crap is what it is. I pray that the organizers of Giro and Tour forbid Discovery - and Basso from participating.

Posted by: Kraeger at Dec 8, 2006 3:12:56 PM