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Thursday 07, Jan 2016

  Boogerd Given Two-Year Suspension For Doping

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The world governing body of cycling, the UCI, has handed a suspension of two years to former rider and directeur sportif Michael Boogerd.

In a press release issued by the UCI, it confirmed that the suspension of Boogerd would run until December 21, 2017. The statement on the UCI’s website reads the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) announces that Michael Boogerd has been sanctioned with a two years’ ineligibility for the anti-doping rule violations he committed during his cycling career. It was further added that the ban is effective until 21 December 2017. The UCI also mentioned that the case has been resolved via an acceptance of consequences as provided for by the World Anti-Doping Code and the UCI Anti-Doping Rules and the UCI will not comment any further.

In a statement, Boogerd said he is bearing the responsibility because of his voluntary confession on March 6, 2013 and would accept the consequences of decisions that he had taken in the past. Boogerd added he did not receive a reduced ban as he was always alone and ready to tell his own story and not about other riders of coaches. In a statement, the Roompot team confirmed that Boogerd would not fight the suspension and added we wish Michael and his family a lot of strength in this difficult time and hope in the future to re-use his knowledge of and love for cycling.

Boogerd would not be able to continue in his role as a directur sportif for the Roompot – Oranje Peloton Pro Continental team. In addition to this, the results of Boogerd from 2005 to 2007 will be scratched from his palmares that included a victory at the Dutch national championships in 2006.

In an interview in 2013, the former Rabobank rider confessed to having used the banned blood booster EPO, cortisone, and blood transfusions. Boogerd, who was an official with the Dutch second-tier team Roompot Oranje last season, said he used banned substances at the end of his career from 1997 to 2007.

Nicknamed the “Boogie-man”, Boogerd was appointed team manager of Team Roompot, a UCI Professional Continental cycling team launching in 2015. Boogerd was a specialist in the one-day classics who won the Amstel Gold race in 1999 and edged Lance Armstrong into second place, and had two stage wins in the Tour de France. In 1993, he turned professional with the WordPerfect–Colnago–Decca team that would later become Racobank.

The Dutch former professional road bicycle racer was one of the leaders of a generation of Dutch cyclists in the late 1990s and early 2000s along with teammate Erik Dekker. The specialties of Boogerd were hilly classics such as La Flèche Wallonne, Liège–Bastogne–Liège, and the Amstel Gold Race in the Ardennes week and the Lombardian races in the Fall, and mountain-stages. Boogerd has been Dutch Champion three times, in 1997, 1998 and in 2006.Boogerd finished 5th overall in the General classification in the 1998 Tour de France that was his highest finish ever in the Tour.

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Wednesday 03, Apr 2013

  Doping On Cycling Team Was Tolerated By Rabobank

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Doping On Cycling Team Was Tolerated By Rabobank

A Dutch newspaper has revealed that Team Rabobank tolerated the use of doping up until at least 2007. It was revealed by de Volkskrant that the riders were allowed to use their own products and medical staff of the team ensured that they didn’t hurt their health.

Three former riders, including Michael Boogerd, one of the Netherlands’ most popular riders, were said to have been involved in the HumanPlasma blood doping ring. A key witness in the Humanplasma scandal, Stefan Matschiner, revealed that three riders of the team were customers of the Swiss blood doping expert.

Boogerd had admitted to using banned blood booster EPO, cortisone and, late in his career, blood transfusions and said he used the banned substances from 1997 to 2007, the end of his career. He even admitted using the Austrian blood lab, Humanplasma, for transfusions. The cyclist won the Amstel Gold classic in 1999, edging Lance Armstrong in second place, and had two stage wins in the Tour de France.

Six former riders – Danny Nelissen, Marc Lotz, Thomas Dekker, Levi Leipheimer, Michael Rasmussen, and Grischa Niermann — and former manager Theo de Rooij have admitted doping. Nelissen confessed to using EPO while riding for the team and confirmed that a doping system was implemented after the Rabobank had endured a low-key start to the 1996 season. Nelissen remarked the pressure of supporting a family had influenced his decision to dope. He claimed he had EPO administered by the team doctor Geert Leinders at the Tour de France in 1996 and 1997.

Rolf Sorensen of Denmark admitted to doping in the 1990s and said he used EPO and cortisone. Theo de Rooy who was team manager from 2003 to 2007 did not deny that there was doping on the team and remarked if there was doping, that was a deliberate decision by the medical staff but claimed not to know of the HumanPlasma involvement.

Theo de Rooy added it was the responsibility of each rider to determine how far he would go into the medical field and said the team management did not encourage or pay for doping, and was not officially allowed. He went on to remark that he had disciplined riders who wanted to organize their own medical care outside the team structure. De Rooy left the team shortly after Rasmussen was removed from the 2007 Tour de France after the 16th stage and was handed over a ban of two years July 2007 to July 2009, for lying about his whereabouts. The cyclist later admitted to using EPO, growth hormones, insulin, testosterone, DHEA, IGF-1, cortisone, and blood doping, for most of his professional career.

Team Rabobank announced its withdrawal from sponsoring the team in October 2012 after 17 seasons in the peloton. The team however announced its intention to continue as a ‘white label’ under a new foundation yet to be established and made an announcement that it would participate in 2013 under the name Blanco Pro Cycling Team (successor of the former Rabobank), with the intention to find a sponsor for 2014 or to stop the team otherwise.

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Thursday 07, Mar 2013

  Dutch Ex-Cyclist Admits Doping

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Dutch Ex-Cyclist Admits Doping

A former Dutch professional cyclist who once edged Lance Armstrong to win the Amstel Gold Race had admitted to using performance enhancing drugs.

Michael Boogerd, the spring classic specialist, admitted to making the use of performance enhancing drugs for a decade during his career. Boogerd revealed he used EPO and cortisone besides using blood transfusions in the last period of his career and added that he doped from 1997 to 2007, a period that covered almost his entire professional career.

Boggerd rendered an apology for keeping the doping culture alive and said he is sorry that he cannot accept that doping was wrong. The cyclist admitted to using the Austrian blood lab, Humanplasma, for transfusions and said he flew to Vienna for blood transfusions and stored his own blood for later use though he did not name anyone who helped him dope and remarked doping was his responsibility and choice.

The confession by the Dutch former cyclist came after several reports linked the former Rabobank rider to doping practices, including going to the Vienna lab. The cyclist, who retired in 2007, had two Tour de France stage wins and won the Amstel Gold classic in 1999, narrowly beating Lance Armstrong, who was banned for life from cycling and stripped of his seven consecutive Tour de France titles and later confessing to doping during his seven-straight Tour victories.

Bogart won a Tour stage in 1996 and his best overall finish in the Tour was fifth in 1998. His greatest triumph was widely regarded as the 2002 Tour 16th stage win in the French Alps, including a solo climb to the finish in La Plagne. After announcing his retirement, the Dutch cyclist became a regular cycling commentator for NOS.

With this confession, Boogerd is the latest rider from the now disbanded Rabobank team to admit doping after Michael Rasmussen, a climbing specialist who won stage victories in the Tour de France and Spanish Vuelta, who admitted to taking everything from testosterone and growth hormones to blood transfusions from 1998-2010 for boosting his performance. In 2005 and 2006, Rasmussen finished the Tour de France wearing the polka dot jersey as the best climber and was the overall leader of the 2007 Tour until he was kicked off for lying about his whereabouts when he missed the pre-race doping tests. The cyclist later admitted that he had lied and was given a two-year ban from cycling.

Last year, Rabobank ended its long sponsorship of professional cycling and said the trust in the cycling world has gone after the publication of the US Anti-Doping Agency’s report on Lance Armstrong and Bert Bruggink of the board of governors said that we are no longer convinced that the international professional cycling world is capable of creating a clean and honest sport.

A judicial inquiry was recently opened by Belgian authorities into Dr. Geert Leinders, who worked for the Rabobank and Team Sky cycling teams. An investigation was launched by the prosecutor’s office in Dendermonde after a Dutch newspaper claimed the Belgian doctor played a key role in alleged doping practices at the former Rabobank team.

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