12 Jan 2013

Swiss lab denies helping Armstrong

4:55 pm on 12 January 2013

A Swiss laboratory has denied it helped Lance Armstrong cheat after claims from the US Anti-Doping Agency that it gave the shamed cyclist information about how to beat drug tests.

The head of the anti-doping laboratory in the Swiss city of Lausanne, Martial Saugy has refuted a claim his lab helped Armstrong get around EPO tests.

The head of the US anti doping agency Travis Tygart, claimed Saugy tipped off the Texan rider about a test for the illegal blood booster in 2002.

Tygart also said the Swiss lab chief told him that world cycling's governing body asked him to meet Armstrong and his former manager Johan Bruyneel to explain the EPO testing process, calling the rendezvous "totally inappropriate".

Saugy has confirmed the International Cycling Union (UCI) had asked him to meet the pair but added: "In the context I remain persuaded that it was the thing to do. It was neither an error nor naivety as some people have written."

He added it would be "paradoxical" that the lab that found the first cases of EPO use should be the one to meet the race champion to tell him how to get around the test.