News

Fulgsang denies links to Ferrari

Fuglsang releases statement on Instagram denying allegations, CADF yet to comment on leaked reports suggesting Danish rider had links with Dr Ferrari

Jakob Fuglsang, the Astana rider at the center of a secret dossier leaked by the CADF (Cycling Anti-Doping Foundation), has denied any links to controversial Dr. Michele Ferrari.

On Sunday, Danish and Norwegian media reported excerpts from a 24-page report dated from the summer of 2019 that the Danish rider had met with Ferrari. Fuglsang took to social media to deny the allegations.

“I contest that I met with Dr. Ferrari,” Fuglsang wrote on Instagram. “I am not aware of any report and I can confirm no procedure has been opened by competent anti-doping authorities against me.”

Fulgsang’s comment comes on the heels of an official denial from Team Astana earlier Monday.

“Accordingly, I have no case to answer,” Fulgsang wrote. “I am extremely concerned that such rumors could be spread out of the press.”

Media cited an internal CADF document that suggests that Ferrari, who’s been banned for life, is active again in the peloton, and suggested that Ferrari had met with members of the Astana team.

CADF officials have yet to comment in the wake of the explosive reports.

On Monday, the UCI said it has yet to see any official report from CADF.

“As of today, the UCI has not received a report from the CADF in order to initiate proceedings against the individuals and the team mentioned,” the UCI said Monday. “The CADF, the independent body mandated by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) to define and implement cycling’s anti-doping strategy, undertakes its investigations completely independently. Our federation is following this case closely and will take the measures deemed appropriate in the interests of cycling.”

Fuglsang, 34, who won the 2019 Criterium du Dauphine and Liege-Bastogne-Liege, and is considered a favorite for the 2020 Olympic Games.

Ferrari was banned for life by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) for his relationship with the disgraced Lance Armstrong, who was also kicked out of the sport and stripped of his seven Tour de France titles after he admitted doping.

Ferrari also worked with 2012 Olympic champion Alexander Vinokourov, who was suspended for two years in 2007 for blood doping. Vinokourov is Astana’s general manager.

On Monday, Ferrari posted a message on his personal website, also denying the report.

“Once again I unfortunately find myself compelled to deny the latest media hoax that concerns me,” Ferrari wrote, adding that he has not worked with any Astana rider in 10 years. He also denied that he visited races in Catalunya, as cited in the report, or that he was seen motor-pacing riders.

According to Politiken, the report by CADF suggests that Ferrari had continued to help the riders in Astana. He is alleged to have travelled to Monaco, where Fuglsang lives, and other venues such as the Tour of Catalonia to meet with riders.

“I haven’t heard people talk about it on the team,” Danish cyclist Magnus Cort, who competed for Astana in 2018 and 2019, told newspaper BT.

“I simply do not believe that takes place anymore. But of course there will always be idiots trying their luck,” he said.

Fuglsang’s former trainer, Rune Larsen, who worked with Astana in 2018 said he was surprised by the allegations.

“During the many years I worked with Jakob, it was always with the mindset that we should reach as far as possible with legal tools, even if it meant that there was some things we could not achieve,” Larsen told broadcaster DR.

Astana said it would “collaborate with any inquiry that could be opened by CADF or the UCI.”