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Testimony continues Tuesday in what will likely be the most important day in the four-day Court of Arbitration for Sport hearing in Alberto Contador’s clenbuterol case.
Lawyers representing the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) were expected to promote their argument that traces of clenbuterol entered Contador’s system during the 2010 Tour de France as part of a blood-doping procedure on the Tour’s second rest day.
According to a report in the Spanish daily AS, WADA is pressing the following theory: that Contador re-injected blood on July 20, when still-unofficial tests showed high levels of plasticizers in his system. The following day, according to this theory, Contador injected himself with plasma to balance his blood count, in the process unintentionally adding clenbuterol to his system.
WADA was scheduled to bring experts to promote its theory in front of the three-member CAS panel that will decide Contador’s fate in Lausanne, Switzerland. Expected to testify were Javier Martín Pliego, biological passport expert Michael Ashenden, Paul Scott and Vivian Jones, all of whom were called by WADA and the UCI.
WADA and UCI lawyers are also arguing that “strict liability” — that a rider is responsible for what enters his system — should be applied in the “caso Contador.”
Contador’s legal team continues to argue that the 50 picograms of the banned anabolic agent entered the three-time Tour winner’s system after he dined on supposedly contaminated steaks brought from Spain to France.
Other witnesses expected to testify are former Contador teammates Benjamin Noval and Paolo Tiralongo, who are expected to confirm his argument that clenbuterol entered his system after the team dined on steaks brought to France from Spain. Several Astana teammates allegedly dined on the beef inside the Astana team bus, but only Contador was called in for testing for anti-doping controls.
Contador is expected to testify on his own behalf Wednesday. A three-member panel will hear closing arguments on Thursday and take several weeks before releasing its ruling.
Contador attended Monday’s and Tuesday’s sessions, joining his legal team and his brother, Fran.
There’s already a suggestion that hearings could be extended for an additional day due to the number of testimony and evidence both sides want to introduce.
Contador could face a two-year ban and the loss of his 2010 Tour crown if found guilty.