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Alberto Contador's test result a new setback for cycling

The Tour de France victor, who tested positive for a banned substance, says contaminated meat might be the reason. But sport's image has taken other hits.

September 30, 2010|By Lance Pugmire

"When you invest massive resources into a drug-testing program and equipment, it catches everything," Vaughters said. "The sensitive testing in our sport did its job. I want the testing to be this good. This case would not happen in most sports. We're pursuing true sport. The volume and [ethic] of testing in this sport makes it abundantly transparent. I believe we're focused on beating this stuff."

"If I'm a sponsor of this sport, I believe I'm interested in real integrity, not a facade. Sponsors should want this kind of testing that creates real sport and genuine results. It's the best way forward, showing this is the most enforced sport in the world."

Andreu has been cooperating with a Los Angeles grand jury as it looks into allegations of systematic doping in cycling. He often repeats his account that he overheard Armstrong tell cancer doctors in 1996 that he had previously used performance-enhancing drugs. But he says cycling's current trials are no different from baseball's steroid crisis last decade and the occasional PED suspensions in the NFL.

"Do we stop putting baseball and football on TV? Every sport has these things," Andreu said. "You can't pull the plug on a sport just because one big name tried to cheat the sport. There's been progress. There's a lot fewer cheats.

"Alberto's test has thrown a monkey wrench into all of the plans. It will cause a lot of confusion. But most riders are doing this clean. This sport is about surviving, enduring, and I believe it will endure."

lance.pugmire@latimes.com

Twitter.com/latimespugmire

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