With the internet swirling with rumours about Contador being cleared, a quick post to state a few points.
- On a point of order, it’s all rumours for now. That said when the Spanish media pack starts running in the same direction…
- As I’ve said before, under the rules Contador needs supply proof to support his hypothesis. It actually shouldn’t be hard to find the bad meat. So whilst everyone is surprised that he has been cleared, it is possible that Contador and his defence team have presented reliable evidence to convince the RFEC. Perhaps it really was about food poisoning after all. After all, if the correct processes are being followed and UCI anti-doping rule 296, already cited by the Spanish press, is used to exonerate Contador then he will have had to establish the hypothesis.
- But if that was the case, surely this get-out-jail ticket would hardly be a secret document presented only to the RFEC? If proof existed, wouldn’t Contador be touring every TV station to wave the evidence in everyone’s face?
- The signs are not convincing. Early on RFEC President Juan Carlos Castaño struggled to grasp the basics and was making supportive noises; this got louder with even the Spanish Prime Minister and the country’s most senior judge making noises when I doubt they’d reviewed the evidence or read the UCI rulebook. It could well be that the rules are being ditched.
- If Contador has been cleared because of notions like the dosage is small then the crumbling sound you can hear is the very legitimacy of the UCI and WADA in Spain. Such a the judgement would be in flagrant breach of their principles.
- Again it raises the question over nationality. Just as many Italians got banned for involvement in Puerto, big name Spaniards appear to enjoy substantial political cover. WADA will probably push the IOC on this and we could even see the UCI being asked whether it can accept Spanish riders given their national governing body appears to reject the once-accepted rules.
- Without evidence to back Contador’s meat hypothesis this is going to the Court of Arbitration faster than you can say “OJ Simpson, Innocent“.