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