Mon 16 Oct 2006
Comments Off on Basso: I will return and win the Tour
Today’s L’Equipe contains an extensive interview with Ivan Basso.
In it he talks about his hopes and plans for his future, and also discusses the much requested DNA test.
Basso states that he has offers from many teams, but that he would prefer to stay at Team CSC. “It’s my team. I think I contributed largely to its structuring.”
Regarding his relationship with Riis, Basso said he had been very dissappointed right after the start of the Tour de France, but that he had come to accept the decision. Of their relationship now, he said: “We are in the situation of couple that has had a few problems and that’s trying to put the pieces back together.”
On the archiving of the case against him, Basso commented that CONI anti-doping commission president Franco Cosenza did not do this “on the simple declaration of the Madrid judge, who said that the documents of the Guardia Civil could not be used. (He) did not base his decision on the 39 pages transmitted in July to the Tour organisation, but on a much more complete dossier, to which the UCI added its arguments.”
On why Basso has so far chosen not to underfo a DNA test, Basso commented: “My attorney would not have been opposed to the principle of DNA research, but the situation wasn’t clear enough,” he said. “There is too much confusion around the investigation. We don’t know if we can trust the state of conservation of the blood bags seized by the investigators.” He added that it was the recommendation of his attorney not to do the DNA test (which he of course will follow).
Basso remains convinced he will return to the Tour and win it. “I even take bets on it,” Basso commented although he has yet to be invited to the presentation of the Tour de France, scheduled October 27 at the Palais des CongrÃ¨s in Paris.
It is worth noting that the UCI has announced that it may take up to 10 months before it decides whether or not to appeal the Operation Puerto cases to CAS. This is due to the refusal of the Spanish Courts in releasing material from the case to UCI. In a comment on this, Erik Breukink of Rabobank called the delay “unacceptable” and called upon the UCI to make a clear decision on the riders involved in Operation Puerto.