Somewhat anticlimatic, but Tyler Hamilton's suspension was upheld, meaning no racing until September or so, and no pro tour team until 2008. This is a consequence of them taking 17 months to get through the appeal process. Which is a ridiculous amount of time for a 24 month sentence. Tylers take here. The official verdict here, 29 pages of a badly scanned fax, boring. Velonews and Cyclingnews articles. Check mountain bike's website next week in the Boulder Report for a summary by Joe Lindsey who consistantly writes the most level headed doping articles in the cycling press
I am skeptical that he was clean. Given the lack of hard proof that Tyler had a in utero absorbed twin, I think it is very likely that he and his teamate (Santi Perez, the only other procylist to test positive for blood doping) were blood doping with their own blood, but got their blood mixed up and thus both tested positive for blood doping with someone elses blood. Thats an opinion, but it is a moot point, really. Tyler did not admit guilt and fought it till the end as an innocent man, frankly he comes off alot better looking than the powers that be. The testing system is suspect for sure, Hamilton undoubtedly was tested non-anonymously and specifically and he also was publicly damned by WADA cheif Dick Pound. It leaves an ugly taste of witch hunt doping rules rather than impartial scientific tests. This needs to be fixed ASAP. I care more about this than being heartbroken about Tyler being guilty. Dick Pound needs to be suspended.
So Tyler sits out until September and either joins a US based team (and wins damn near everything) or a second tier Euro pro team. Either way, I say he wins the Tour de Langkawi next year and maybe podiums in the Giro or the Vuelta once before he retires. Blood doping or no, he is a stud, he will have served his time and I welcome his return to pro cycling.
Good luck Tyler, make me proud of you again.
The RKP Christmas Wish List
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