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Basso quits Discovery Channel team after fresh doping allegations

Basso quits Discovery Channel team after fresh doping allegations

Italian cyclist Ivan Basso quit the Discovery Channel team after authorities reopened an investigation into his role in a Spanish doping scandal.
The Giro d'Italian champion asked to be released immediately from his contract during a meeting Sunday with Disovery officials, the team said in a statement Monday.
He cited personal reasons related to the reopened investigation by the Italian Olympic Committee, which has called him to a doping hearing on Wednesday on charges of having used or attempted to use a banned substance or method.
Basso, who has always denied doping, was suspended by Discovery Channel last week after the summons. He signed a two-year contract in November to ride for the U.S.-based team.
The 29-year-old Italian was one of 50 riders implicated in last year's Operation Puerto, which led to his exclusion from the Tour de France. Basso's name turned up on a list of cyclists who allegedly had contact with a Spanish doctor accused of running a blood doping clinic in Madrid.
Basso was cleared of involvement by the Italian Olympic Committee and the Italian cycling federation in October.
Italian Olympic Committee doping investigators reportedly have obtained bags suspected to contain Basso's blood from Spain and want to compare them with his DNA.
This month, a DNA sample of 1997 Tour de France champion Jan Ullrich was matched to blood bags seized in the scandal. The now-retired German has denied using any banned substances.


Updated : 2020-11-30 14:18 GMT+08:00