ROME (AFP) — Italian rider Filippo Pozzato, who is preparing to compete in the London Olympics, said he was “calm” on Tuesday after appearing before the anti-doping prosecutor of the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI), reports said.
CONI said in a statement on Monday that it had summonsed Pozzato to the hearing in Rome to explain “news which has appeared in the press concerning him.”
“We spoke, they asked me a whole load of questions. It’s not up to me to pass judgement, let’s see what they tell me,” Pozzato said, before playing down suggestions that he might be dropped from Italy’s Olympic team.
“Is there a chance I might miss the Olympics? It’s not for me to judge. We will start preparing tomorrow (Wednesday) and then we will see what happens. I am calm,” he was quoted as saying on the website of sports daily Gazzetta dello Sport.
On Saturday, the daily La Repubblica claimed that the former Milan-San Remo winner had links with Dr. Michele Ferrari, who this week had doping allegations leveled at him by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) at the same time as seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong and four other people.
The Italian federation has for several years forbidden any of its members from having contact with the controversial Ferrari.
Pozzato’s lawyer has denied that the Farnese Vini-Selle Italia rider is under investigation as part of the Padova-based inquiry into the activities of Ferrari.
Pozzato pulled out of the Giro d’Italia last month after suffering a right wrist fracture on the 10th stage.
His Farnese Vini team will not compete in this summer’s Tour de France.