Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 19th 2014 Contents A72
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Saturday, July 19, 2014
with cycling panel
LONDON---Lance Armstrong s
meeting with an independent panel
investigating cycling s doping past
was welcomed by the World Anti-
Doping Agency yesterday as a positive
step in getting to the bottom of the
drug culture which ravaged the sport.
Armstrong met with investigators
for seven hours on May 22 at a hotel
outside Dulles Airport in Washington,
DC, according to Elliot Peters, an attor-
ney for the American rider who was
stripped of his seven Tour de France
titles for doping.
WADA director general David How-
man said the agency knew a meeting
would take place but had no informa-
tion about what was said, stressing that
the Cycling Independent Reform Com-
mission is doing its own work.
"It just shows the establishment of
an independent commission was a use-
ful device," Howman said. "To be fair,
it s what Armstrong said all along ---
that if there would be an independent
body he would go and talk to them."
"Credit s due all around," Howman
added. "At least that discussion has
occurred. That s very good"
Armstrong s willingness to talk to
the commission has been seen as crucial
in efforts to look into the International
Cycling Union s handling of doping in
the late 1990s and early 2000s, includ-
ing whether former UCI officials cov-
ered up or were complicit in his dop-
"It s up to the CIRC and the infor-
mation he actually gave," Howman said.
"We re going to have to be patient and
wait for them to complete their job."
The commission is chaired by Dick
Marty, a Swiss politician and former
Swiss state prosecutor. The other mem-
bers are German anti-doping expert
Ulrich Haas and Peter Nicholson, a
former Australian military officer and
war crimes investigator.
UCI President Brian Cookson has
said that Armstrong s lifetime ban for
doping could be reduced if he provides
information which assists other doping
investigations. Peters said Thursday
that Armstrong did not ask for, and
was not offered such a deal.
Howman said WADA would be told
if there were moves to cut Armstrong s
"They ve got to complete their job
before they start doing anything," he
said. "We would hear if there were any
suggestions of penalty changes and
things like that, because that s where
we have to be involved."
The UCI would not comment yes-
terday on details of the investigation
but said that, since the panel was
formed in February, it has met with "a
wide range of individuals and organ-
Among those meeting with the com-
mission have been "riders and members
of their entourage, experts, sponsors,
anti-doping agencies, UCI staff mem-
bers and many others directly or indi-
rectly involved in the sport of cycling,"
the UCI said in a statement to the AP.
Under the WADA code, athletes can
have sanctions reduced if they provide
"substantial assistance" to anti-doping
investigators. The aim is to target any
members of an athlete s entourage who
may be involved in the doping.
American sprinter Tyson Gay
received a reduced one-year suspension
in May after cooperating with the US
Anti-Doping Agency s investigation, a
decision accepted by WADA.
Howman dismissed calls by some
athletes for imposition of lifetime bans
for a serious first offense. WADA has
doubled the penalty from two-year to
four-year suspensions in the new dop-
ing code that goes into effect next year.
Lifetime bans were deemed to be legally
Hamilton fastest in 2nd
practice for German GP
beat teammate Nico Rosberg to the
fastest time in the second practice ses-
sion at the German Grand Prix as Mer-
cedes set the pace yesterday.
Hamilton completed his best lap on
the Hockenheimring in 1 minute, 18.341
seconds, edging Rosberg by 0.024 sec-
"A pretty good day today," Hamilton
Rosberg had been leading but he
went off track on the second turn and
his teammate then topped the leader-
board on supersoft tires for the first
time. Red Bull s Daniel Ricciardo was
third, 0.078 behind Rosberg, followed
by Ferrari s Kimi Raikkonen and
McLaren s Kevin Magnussen.
"It s tomorrow when we ll see how
close we really are," Ricciardo said of
his team s challenge. "I think we had
a good car today and we extracted pretty
much everything we could out of the
Felipe Massa of Williams and Jensen
Button of McLaren were sixth and sev-
enth, respectively, followed by Red Bull s
Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari s Fernando
Alonso, Williams Valtteri Bottas,
Sauber s Adrian Sutil, and Toro Rosso s
Daniil Kvyat, who was within half a
second of Raikkonen in fourth.
Track temperatures hit an astonishing
58 degrees C (136 F) at one stage during
the afternoon session. Rosberg s brakes
were smoking as he waited for Hamil-
ton s tires to be changed.
The forecast is for more of the same
temperatures today, while rain and sum-
mer storms could arrive tomorrow.
Mercedes also finished 1-2 in the
opening practice, with Rosberg beating
Hamilton by 0.065. (AP)
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