Landis’s Lawyer Lashes Out At International Cycling Union
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The attorney for cyclist Floyd Landis criticized the International Cycling Union yesterday for leaking the results of the Tour de France winner’s positive “A” sample drug test, saying it breached the organization’s own rules.
Results of the second or “B” sample are expected to be released Saturday, and until they are completed, “it should be strongly noted that there is not even a formal doping charge that has been filed against Mr. Landis,” attorney Howard Jacobs said.
Jacobs said he was “troubled by the actions of the UCI and how they have spoken out about this case, which is in direct contravention of the UCI’s own rules and the World Anti-Doping Code.
“While there has been much speculation and reporting as to the cause of the “A” positive, the fact remains that the “B”sample has not been tested,”he said in a statement released from his office in Los Angeles.
Landis showed a testosterone imbalance in an initial urine sample taken during the Tour de France. Both “A” and “B” samples were provided July 20 after he sped his way back into contention by winning a tough Alpine leg of the multi-stage race.
Last Wednesday, the UCI, cycling’s governing body, revealed that an unidentified cyclist had tested positive, but it refused to release the name until the backup sample had been tested. The next day, Landis’ Phonak team said it was Landis who tested positive.
Jacobs said the UCI should have known the name would become public once the announcement of a positive test was made “due to the confidentiality breaches that have been previously noted by many at the French laboratory” where the testing took place.
The attorney also cited a New York Times report that said a carbon isotope ratio test had detected synthetic testosterone in Landis’ system.The Times attributed the report to a person inside the UCI with knowledge of the results.
“This raises even more concerns, particularly following the provisional suspension earlier this year of a high-ranking UCI official for leaking documents and-or information to” the French newspaper, LEquipe, Jacobs said.
Landis’s doctor, Brent Kay, confirmed the finding on the CIR test to the Times, though in Jacobs’s eyes, that did not make the UCI’s leak OK.
“Let’s be clear, the UCI are the ones who said the CIR test was positive,” Jacobs told the Associated Press.
The attorney said he had seen no proof of the positive CIR test.
“While there is an allegation that the CIR is positive, they don’t provide documentation that backs that up,” he said. “To say I agree with that conclusion, I can’t do that, because I haven’t seen the documents.”
If Landis’s “B” sample comes back positive, the results will be forwarded to the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, which would begin its disciplinary procedure.
The CIR test could prove even more damaging than the elevated testosterone-epitestosterone ratio discovered in Landis’ “A” sample. That’s because the CIR tests detects the presence of synthetic testosterone, meaning it was introduced by an outside source.
Jacobs also represented cyclist Tyler Hamilton in his doping case.
Hamilton won a gold medal at the Athens Olympics and was considered a possible successor to seven-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong. But he tested positive for blood doping at the Spanish Vuelta in September 2004, lost his appeal and is serving a two-year suspension that ends next month.