Wig­gins pack­age was med­i­cal, con­firms Team Sky’s Sut­ton

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

Team Sky coach Shane Sut­ton con­firmed yes­ter­day that a mys­te­ri­ous pack­age de­liv­ered to Bradley Wig­gins’s doc­tor dur­ing the 2011 Dauphine Libere con­tained med­i­cal sub­stances.

UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) is prob­ing al­leged wrong­do­ing at Team Sky and British Cy­cling, who share head­quar­ters, and the pack­age, de­liv­ered by British Cy­cling coach Si­mon Cope, forms part of its in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

Team Sky boss Dave Brails­ford has re­fused to clar­ify ex­actly what the pack­age con­tained, but Sut­ton con­firmed it was medicine that would have been ad­min­is­tered by team doc­tor Richard Free­man.

“I be­lieve (Free­man) ad­min­is­tered the med­i­ca­tion,” Sut­ton told the British gov­ern­ment’s Cul­ture, Me­dia and Sport com­mit­tee dur­ing a hear­ing about doping in sport in cen­tral Lon­don.

“Ob­vi­ously there was a med­i­cal sup­ply he (Cope) de­liv­ered. I don’t know what was in the pack­age.

“What­ever it was, he (Free­man) would have ad­min­is­tered. When the in­gre­di­ents of the pack­age comes out, ev­ery­body will be clear. I’m quite sure, 100 per­cent, there’ll be no wrong­do­ing.”

The Daily Mail has re­ported the pack­age was de­liv­ered on the day Wig­gins won the Dauphine Libere stage race in France, giv­ing him the big­gest vic­tory of his ca­reer at that point. It has emerged Wig­gins was granted ther­a­peu­tic use ex­emp­tions (TUEs) to take banned anti-in­flam­ma­tory drug tri­am­ci­nolone be­fore the 2011 Tour de France, the 2012 Tour, which he won, and the 2013 Giro d’Italia.

Five-time Olympic cham­pion Wig­gins, Cope, Brails­ford and British Cy­cling have all strongly de­nied break­ing anti-doping rules.

Sut­ton, who stepped down from his role as British Cy­cling team di­rec­tor over sex­ism al­le­ga­tions ear­lier this year, said he had lit­tle con­tact with Team Sky’s med­i­cal team. “My role in all of this was to be part of Brad’s coach­ing team, not Brad’s med­i­cal team,” he said.

“Know­ing the kid (Wig­gins) for many, many years, as far I’m con­cerned he never worked out­side any rules.

“Given the fact Dave Brails­ford was prob­a­bly the pi­o­neer be­hind clean cy­cling and cre­ated what is prob­a­bly the clean­est team in the world-he set up a zero-tol­er­ance pro­gramme-there was no wrong­do­ing there. “I can’t state strongly enough there was no wrong­do­ing on any part of Brad and Team Sky.” Aus­tralian Sut­ton ap­peared to be­come frus­trated as the ses­sion pro­gressed and at one point said he was “quite up­set” Team Sky’s in­tegrity was be­ing ques­tioned.

Ear­lier, British Cy­cling pres­i­dent Bob How­den said he did not know what was in the pack­age in ques­tion. Ge­orge Gil­bert, chair of British Cy­cling’s ethics com­mis­sion, said the pack­age might have con­tained “ped­als” or “spare shoes”. —AFP

Mo Farah

Bradley Wig­gins

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