Andy Schleck has said that there is ‘no reason to be happy’ about Alberto Contador’s two-year ban for doping at the 2010 Tour de France, even though he is set to take the race’s overall title after Contador’s name is removed from the result sheet.
“There is no reason to be happy now,” said Schleck in a statement issued by his RadioShack-Nissan team on Monday afternoon.
“First of all I feel sad for Alberto. I always believed in his innocence. This is just a very sad day for cycling. The only positive news is that there is a verdict after 566 days of uncertainty. Now, we can move on.”
On Monday, the Court of Arbitration for Sport ruled that Contador should be banned for two years for failing a test for clenbuterol during the 2010 Tour. The Spaniard will not be free to race again until August 5, and has had all of his results annulled since the 2010 Tour, including his 2011 Giro d’Italia win.
Schleck lost the 2010 Tour to Contador by just 39 seconds, one of the slimmest margins in the race’s long history. Schleck lost the race lead to Contador after the Luxembourger dropped his chain on the Port de Balès climb during stage 15. Contador appeared to attack Schleck at the time of the incident, causing widespread controversy and the two professionals to fall out. Contador later issued a video apology to Schleck for the incident.
“I trust that the CAS judges took all things into consideration after reading the 4,000 page file. If now I am declared overall winner of the 2010 Tour de France it will not make me happy. I battled with Contador in that race and I lost,” said Schleck.
“My goal is to win the Tour de France in a sporting way, being the best of all competitors, not in court. If I succeed this year, I will consider it as my first Tour de France victory.”
Schleck had finished in second place in the last three editions of the Tour de France – but that will now change after Contador’s suspension means he loses the 2010 Tour title to Schleck.
Schleck will contest the 2012 Tour de France for the RadioShack-Nissan team.