Daily News Digest: Aderlass doctor given prison sentence
Hello again, CyclingTips readers,
As we close out the week, the headlines include news of a prison sentence for the doctor at the center of the Operation Aderlass investigation and updates on which riders will be at which races in 2021, among other news items.
Read on for the latest from the world of cycling.
Doctor at center of Operation Aderlass investigation sentenced to four years and 10 months in prison
Mark Schmidt, the German doctor at the center of the Operation Aderlass investigation, has been sentenced for four years and 10 months in prison.
Schmidt, who had admitted to helping athletes dope but denied having done so in the interest of making financial gains, was found guilty in a Munich court on 24 counts of using prohibited doping methods, two counts of prohibited use of drugs, and a further count for causing dangerous bodily harm by giving a mountain biker a substance that was not approved for human use, according to the Associated Press. He was also fined €158,000 and banned from practicing medicine for three years. Four co-defendants that had helped Schmidt in his operation, including his father, were also fined or given suspended prison sentences.
The verdict comes a little less than two years after police raids at the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships in Austria and in Erfurt, Germany, where Schmidt was based. More than 40 blood bags and other evidence of doping were found as part of the raid in Erfurt.
A few of the athletes who had worked with Schmidt, including former road pros Georg Preidler and Stefan Denifl, had already been found guilty in other court cases. Preidler was given a suspended prison sentence last year in Austria, while Denifl received a prison sentence in Austria earlier this week.
Bernal reportedly mulling a possible Giro start in 2021
Egan Bernal is reportedly considering racing the 2021 Giro d’Italia. The 24-year-old Colombian told La Gazzetta dello Sport that he is still uncertain of his plans for the season, but that he is mulling a possible start at the Giro in what would mark his debut in the Italian Grand Tour.
Bernal noted that he had given an interview late last year in which he said he would be racing the Tour this year, but told La Gazzetta that he was still thinking about potentially racing the Giro, saying that “the Giro comes first in the calendar, and in my head, option number one is to be at the start.”
The 2019 Tour de France winner is currently working his way back from the back issues that troubled him last season. He has not raced since pulling out of the 2020 Tour de France.
Junior races cancelled at Cyclocross Worlds
The UCI announced on Friday that the men’s and women’s junior races at the upcoming Cyclocross World Championships in Ostend, Belgium, have been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The under-23 and elite races are still set to go ahead as planned.
Tour de Rwanda postponed
Organizers have announced that the Tour du Rwanda has been postponed to May.
The eight-day stage race had been scheduled to run from February 21 to 28, but organizers decided to push the event back due to the pandemic. The Tour du Rwanda is now set to run from May 2 to 9.
Yates could race both the Giro and the Tour
According to Cyclingnews, Simon Yates could race both the Giro d’Italia and the Tour de France in 2021.
While Yates’s calendar is not yet set in stone, BikeExchange director Matt White told Cyclingnews that it is “highly likely” that Yates will race the Giro and then the Tour before heading to the Tokyo Olympics.
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A closer look at what might keep Joe Biden from bringing his Peloton bike to the White House
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