At a press conference in Spain earlier today, Alberto Contador once again protested that he never doped in his career. He lashed out at the media for dragging his name through the mud and the anti-doping rules and the system that enforces them.
At news conference, Contador vows to appeal
Contador Will Appeal Tour de France Doping Sanction
I'm sorry, but I've heard all this before. Floyd Landis sang a very similar song for years and look how that ended up.
That said, I think Alberto will fair better in whatever way he chooses to fight the sanction. He has wisely let his agent and his lawyers do much of the talking, rather than blindly flailing about as Floyd did. Alberto has allowed himself to be advised and guided (to a certain extent) by his legal team and has wisely not proposed any truly outlandish theories (contaminated whisky, really Floyd?) of how he believes clenbuterol entered his system.
What do I think? I think it's odd that only a small amount of the banned substance was detected and that plastics that could indicate blood transfusions were also detected. I think it's a shame that the anti-doping system that is so supposedly broken is still in place, without anyone willing to step up and propose changes. I think it's a tragedy of magnanimous proportions that some riders feel they must dope to gain an edge.
Until next time, ride long and keep the rubber-side down.