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by Mark Zalewski
December 30, 2016
In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Van Aert extends series lead with Azencross win; Sanne Cant wins Azencross; Frustrations as no proof of innocence given to parliament in Wiggins case; Syncing with Sagan: Sam Bennett looks ahead to 2017; Van der Poel okay after hard crash; Stybar makes return to cyclocross in Azencross; More questions arise from Tour of Qatar cancellation; Family of fallen cyclist calls for safer roads; Jens Voigt to ‘Everest’ Berlin Teufelsberg hill for charity; Video: Best of 2016 by bike; Ride along with Wout van Aert.
British members of Parliament have been left scratching their heads after previous claims by Team Sky that a mystery medical delivery to Bradley Wiggins in 2011 have been unsubstantiated. Team Principal Dave Brailsford and Wiggins’ coach Shane Sutton were amongst those in front of MPs on December 19, with the duo asked to give their explanation as to what was delivered to Wiggins by British Cycling employee Simon Cope.
Brailsford said the delivery was innocent, comprising the legal decongestant Fluimucil. He said it was taken by Cope from British Cycling’s medical stores and brought hundreds of miles to Wiggins, despite the same product being available in stores close to the final stage of the Critérium du Dauphiné.
MPs requested proof that this was indeed the case, but British Cycling have been unable to provide any. Further questions have been raised by the timing involved, with the product apparently being sourced four days before its eventual delivery, thus calling into question Sky’s claims that Wiggins was sick. Damian Collins MP is the chairman of the Culture, Media and Sport select committee which questioned Brailsford, Sutton.
“The more we discover about the package, the more new questions seem to be thrown up,” Sutton told the Daily Mail. “We now know from Simon Cope’s expense claims that the request to take the package must have been made some time in advance, and that he travelled from southern England up to Manchester to collect it, and then went back to fly to France from London Gatwick.
“If this medicine was needed urgently it would have been much quicker to buy it in France. We also know from last week’s hearing that the medication was administered as soon as it was delivered. It also seems that British Cycling themselves do not know categorically what was in the package. They say they understand it to be Fluimucil but do not explain why they understand that it was. We need to be sure that British Cycling do keep proper records of what goes in and out of their medical stores.”
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