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NewsWire: Landis under grand jury investigation; Tony Martin returns Tuesday

In our daily NewsWire, we bring you a collection of the intriguing stories from newspapers, journals and elsewhere around the world of competitive cycling. Pour your coffee, mute your phone and read on.

San Diego grand jury investigating Floyd Landis — San Diego Union Tribune

A grand jury in San Diego is investigating Floyd Landis for possible wire and mail fraud in relation to his defense fund. According to the San Diego Union Tribune, Landis has received a “target letter” from the US attorney’s office informing him of the probe.

Following his doping positive in 2006, which stripped him of his Tour de France title, Landis wrote a book and toured the country soliciting donations to help pay the legal fees associated with fighting his doping charge. In May 2010, nearly four years after his initial positive test, he admitted to doping and alleged that other top riders on his team, including Lance Armstrong, had doped as well.

When contacted by the San Diego newspaper, Landis declined further comment. His attorney, Leo Cunningham, said in an email: “I can say that Floyd and I know that there are very experienced lawyers in the San Diego U.S. Attorney’s Office, and we are confident they would do the right thing once they had a complete understanding of all the facts behind anything they might be investigating.”

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Tony Martin to return at GP Frankfurt — Het Nieuwsblad

Tony Martin will resume racing at the Grand Prix Frankfurt on May 1, three weeks after he was hit by a car and hospitalized in Switzerland. He underwent surgery in Zurich with fractures to his face, left shoulder blade, and arm.

“I am satisfied that I got the doctor’s green light to race again,” said the German of Omega Pharma-Quick Step, who says he can start racing again without pressure.

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London minicab firm loses government contract over squabble with cyclists — Cycling Weekly

London minicab firm Addison Lee will not see its government contract renewed following controversy over the company’s owner, John Griffin, instructing his drivers to illegally use London’s bus lanes, which also serve as bike lanes. The company’s contract to ferry civil servants within the city will not be renewed when it runs out at the end of the month.

The firm was paid over £35,000 by the government between August and January 1, 2011.

Griffin further angered cyclists when he wrote in a company newsletter that injuries to cyclists were inevitable.
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Vanendert and De Clercq refine TT positions — Het Nieuwsblad

The Lotto-Bellisol duo of Jelle Vanendert and Bart De Clercq spent Thursday in the Eddy Merckx wind tunnel, refining their aerodynamic positions ahead of a the Tour de France and Giro d’Italia.

“It is a must during preparation to do a big round of testing such as this,” said team sports director Marc Sergeant. “It’s a combination of several factors, with the position on the bike being one of the most important. Things like the bike, helmet, shoes and clothing also play a part.”

“Everyone knows that an optimal position can make you a few percent faster, and in a time trial that makes a lot of difference,” Vanendert said.

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