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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Monday, November 25, 2019

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2019 Tour de France | 2019 Giro d'Italia

Far from being demeaning to human spiritual values, scientific rationalism is the crowning glory of the human spirit. - Richard Dawkins

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Ineos would pull out of cycling if rules were broken, says Sir Jim Ratcliffe

Road.cc posted this:

Sir Jim Ratcliffe has restated his position that Ineos would pull out of cycling should members of the team be caught cheating – although there was a certain ambiguity in his words regarding any events that may have taken place before he took ownership of what was up until that point Team Sky.

Former Team Sky and British Cycling doctor Richard Freeman is currently the subject of a medical tribunal, at which he has admitted ordering a delivery of testosterone to the National Cycling Centre. The General Medical Council is attempting to prove that the substance was intended for a rider.

Egan Bernal

2019 Tour de France winner Egan Bernal. The INEOS/Sky team has won every Tour since 2012 except 2014. Sirotti photo

Freeman’s defence hinges on an allegation that former British Cycling and Team Sky head coach, Shane Sutton, 'bullied' him into ordering the banned substance for the treatment of erectile dysfunction. His defence team also accused Sutton of doping – a line of questioning that resulted in the Australian storming out of the hearing.

Team Ineos boss Sir Dave Brailsford was overseeing Freeman and Sutton at this time, giving rise to questions over the way that both British Cycling and Team Sky were run.

“Dave will have to deal with that side,” Sir Jim Ratcliffe told The Times(link is external). “I am not interested in the history – just our watch and going forward. If there are any issues for Dave, he will have to deal with those. There is nothing happening in our team.”

Speaking in May, when Ineos took over Team Sky, Ratcliffe said the petrochemicals firm would withdraw its sponsorship should members of its team be caught cheating.

Speaking in light of recent developments, he restated this position, emphasising that he strongly believed that nothing untoward had taken place.

You can read the entire story here.

Elia Viviani will ride Classics, Tour de France to prepare for Olympics

Elia Viviani, who has transferred from Deceuninck-Quick Step to Cofidis for 2020, has announced that he will try to win Milano-San Remo, skip the Giro d'Italia and then ride the Tour de France. He believes this will give him optimal condition to try for medals at the Tokyo Olympics' track events.

Elia viviani

Elia Viviani (on right) winning the 2019 Hamburg Cyclassics

Though thirty-year-old Viviani has done no better than ninth at Milano-San Remo, he's going to give it another shot. Then with the Tour (June 27 – July 19) coming a little before The Tokyo track events (August 3 – August 9) Viviani believes he will be in perfect condition to go home with a little gold.

He has a personal history of winning races after a Grand Tour. After the 2019 Tour in August he won the Prudential RideLondon, the Hamburg EuroEyes Cyclassics and the European road champs.

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