In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: André Greipel powers to spring win at Paris-Nice; Geraint Thomas solos to win on second stage of Tirreno-Adriatico; Australia dominates Oceania Championship time trials; Former colleague defends Wiggins doctor Freeman: ‘I feel like he’s been strung up’; Amgen Tour of California men’s, women’s teams announced; Nicolas Roche says he would not back Brailsford either; Kluge, Ewan both out of Tirreno-Adriatico; Unable to find a new team, Alessandro Vanotti retires; Boonen: I will truly miss the team time trial; Alabama Cycling Classic to feature live streams; NASCAR racing champions choose cycling for fitness; 2017 Paris-Nice: Stage 5 highlights; 2017 Tirreno-Adriatico: Stage 2 highlights; 2017 UCI Women’s WorldTour: Focus on Kasia Niewiadoma.
Your Friday Daily News Digest
Former Team Sky and current British Cycling doctor Richard Freeman has been in the news for several months, having been the physician linked to the receipt of a mysterious package sent from Manchester to France in June 2011. The package, which was uncovered by the Daily Mail in October, was transported by BC employee Simon Cope and administered to Bradley Wiggins by Freeman.
Former British Cycling psychologist Dave Readle worked alongside Freeman in the past and defended him this week in interviews with the BBC and the Daily Mail. He has since spoken in depth to CyclingTips, talking about Freeman’s character plus his work within the federation, the claims that the doctor is responsible for the lack of a paper trail in relation to the delivered package, the changing mood within British Cycling and Sky over the years, claims of bullying within the organisation and his contention that Freeman is essentially being made a scapegoat. Here is an excerpt:
CT: From your point of view, do you feel that Dr. Freeman has been left to take the brunt of the blame? How do you interpret how things have gone?
Well, what I would say is up until the 2008 Olympics – because I was there before that – British Cycling was probably the best place to be in the world, anywhere. In terms of when you talk about a team, they were really supportive. There was a good sense…everybody wanted to help each other out. It had a real family feel to it. So the stuff that was reported back then like it being like the Waltons… it was an amazing place. You had your characters there. Even the staff… you had Dan Hunt, Rod Ellingworth, Matt Parker, Spike the Mechanic [Peter Taylor]. You had everyone there. It was a really good place to be. Regardless of what other things that went on, it worked at that time.
Then I think then after… the team ethos… the successes that they have had, the rewards and the accolades… Everyone was happy to go collect all the knighthoods and the press claps on the back, but as soon as the shit has hit the fan, it has now become Team I. Nobody is there supporting each others. It is just me, me, me, I am looking after myself. I am going to point the finger, stab him in the back.
It has become a bit like a Greek tragedy. Everything is nice on the outside, but everyone is now turning on each other.
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