Cyclist Frank Schleck, who was suspended for a year after failing the dope test during last year’s Tour de France, has once again reiterated that according to him the punishment that he was meted out was too severe.
The 32 year old rider, who came third during the Tour of 2011 had tested positive for diuretic Xipamide, which is a banned substance. The ban handed down to Schleck is backdated to last year’s July 14 and basically means that Schleck will be missing the Tour de France this year.
Schleck had earlier said, “I am thoroughly disappointed with the verdict. I personally think that suspending me for a one whole year is extremely harsh especially since the council has conceded that I had taken the diuretic Xipamide, unintentionally without knowing it.
Frank, who is the older brother of 2010 Tour de France winner Andy Schleck, has also added that it was unfortunate that as per the UCI provisions involuntary contamination is enough for pronouncing a punishment.
Following the ban, Schleck will lose all the results of 2012 event. He was in standing in the 12th position when he was forced to withdraw.
Luxembourg’s anti-doping body (ALAD) president Robert Schuller has said that they accepted the ban that was imposed on the rider.
Earlier, Schleck had said that he had absolutely no idea how the banned substance got into his system. He further said that though a one year ban was imposed on him, it has been proven that he is not a doper. He said, ‘I am relieved that the judges concerned acknowledged that mine is not a case of doping and I did not take the diuretic Xipamide to enhance my performance. This is very important to me, my family and friends and to all those who support me. I know I did nothing wrong”.