Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Ivan Basso Admits Operacion Puerto Involvement

May 7, 2007. Ivan Basso was summoned to the Procura Anti-Doping of CONI (Italian Olympic Committees) in Rome to testify about his involvement in "Operacion Puerto". Blood bags of Basso had been found in the offices of Doctor Eufemiano Fuentes in Spain.

With evidence mounting of his involvement, Basso U-turned from previous statements of total innocence and admitted being involved.

On May 1st the Discovery Channel Pro Cycling team announced that Ivan Basso would be released from his contract with the team. At the time Basso cited "personal reasons related to the re-opened investigation by the Italian Olympic Committees [CONI]."

After the tragic ending to the life of Marco Pantani attention is already turning to how Basso should be treated in the media and the court of public opinion. As the head of the Italian cycling federation Renato Di Rocco told Gazzetta dello Sport, "Ivan has done exactly what everyone asked of Pantani, and Marco didn't do; now, we ask in the name of cycling to not leave Ivan Basso alone."

Photo: Basso arriving at the Procura in Rome

1 comment:

  1. First Basso, now Scarponi. Let's hope others follow suit so we tifosi can focus on the racing. Though it's naive to think journalists will refrain from rumor and speculation until the authorities release the facts, hopefully we can get through the Giro without too much distraction. I envy your being in Verona for the final time trial.

    We know from spring successes that Cunego, Savoldelli and DiLuca are going well, but Simoni is a bit of a mystery this year. He did place top 20 in Georgia, but there's not much else to go on. Perhaps his adventures in mountain biking have infused him with a renewed spirit? I think he may have the strongest team for the mountains too. Popovych should be an interesting dark horse.

    As always, I look forward to the sprint stages. I would have liked to see Bennati mix it up with the Big Dogs, but I suppose Lampre must be all for Cunego.