USADA Bans Accepted By Danielson, Vande Velde, And Zabriski

After making statements that they doped during their respective times as teammates of Lance Armstrong, Garmin-Sharp riders Tom Danielson, Christian Vande Velde, and David Zabriskie have accepted their bans imposed by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).

While Vande Velde has been banned from September 9 2012, and lost his results from June 4, 2004 through until April 30 2006, the suspension of Zabriskie starts from September 1, 2012 and he loses all results from May 12, 2003, until July 31st 2006 and Danielson has been banned from September 1 2012, and loses his results from March 1 2005 until September 23, 2006. Each rider has received a ban of six months. The bans imposed by USADA on Levi Leipheimer (Omega Pharma Quick Step), Michael Barry (Team Sky), and George Hincapie (BMC), all former US Postal riders have also been accepted by the riders.

In a statement released by Garmin-Sharp, the team said Slipstream Sports was created for the formation of a team where cyclists could compete 100% clean and it is good to see the incredible strides cycling has taken to clean itself up. The statement further read that cycling has never been cleaner and Garmin-Sharp finds itself at a critical moment in cycling’s evolution: confronting its history.

Fourth in the team’s debut Tour de France in 2008, Vande Velde, turned professional with US Postal in 1998 and started the Tour the following year and rode until the end of the 2003 season for it. Velde said he used EPO during his stints at Liberty Seguros and at CSC under Bjarne Riio. The USADA report stated Vande Velde who was a somewhat reluctant doper who nonetheless worked with Dr. Michele Ferrari and submitted to his doping regimen of EPO for many seasons.

Vande Velde admits to his doping and made apologies for his past in a statement and said he loves cycling and he failed and succeeded in one of the most humbling sports in the world. He added that he competed drug free as a young pro rider, but decided to go for performance enhancing drugs when presented with a choice, a decision which he deeply regrets. Velde added that he won races before and after doping and selected the wrong path. He said actually he never won after doping and decided to come out clean and racing well before Slipstream and believed in the team because of its unbending mission of clean sport.

Zabriskie, who joined Garmin in 2008, at the same time as Vande Velde and Danielson rode with Lance Armstrong from 2001 to 2004 and said he was introduced to doping by Postal team boss Johan Bruyneel who is currently fighting USADA’s charges. Zabriskie said he accepts full responsibility of his decision to use performance enhancing drugs and was happy to come forward and tell USADA his side of whole story to help bring the issue to the fore and assure a safe, healthy, and clean future for cycling. According to USADA, Danielson was directed towards Johan Bruyneel by Dr Ferrari.

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