8 Oct 2009

French anti-doping chief slams UCI, Astana

8:30 am on 8 October 2009

The French anti-doping agency, the AFLD, say they're surprised at the lack of positive doping tests at this year's Tour de France and won't now collaborate with world cycling's ruling body next year.

And the AFLD maintained their claims that the Astana team of Lance Armstrong and eventual winner Alberto Contador were among the most "blatant" when it came to delays during doping controls.

The AFLD's shaky relationship with cycling's world ruling body the International Cycling Union, the UCI, crumbled some more this week when newspapers, citing an AFLD report, claimed that some teams, including Astana, were given special treatment at this year's race.

Some riders were difficult to locate on this year's Tour de France, testers had to sometimes wait up to an hour for a rider to appear after being notified of an impending control and some blood samples were not always kept refrigerated.

Jean-Pierre Verdy, who is chief of the team which carries out the controls, says it was mostly Astana and the other teams weren't quite as blatant.