World sport’s top court CAS on Monday rejected an appeal by disgraced German cyclist Stefan Schumacher against a two-year ban for doping, related to offences at the 2008 Tour de France.
Schumacher tested positive for the banned blood booster EPO CERA both at the Tour de France and Olympic Games in 2008. He was appealing against a ban handed down after offenses at the Tour de France.
His claims that the testing procedures were not water-tight, however, were refuted by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
“The Court of Arbitration for Sport has dismissed the appeal filed by German cyclist Stefan Schumacher against the decision of the International Cycling Union to recognize the two-year suspension imposed by the French Anti-Doping Agency and to extend it worldwide,” said the court in a statement.
The CAS brought forward the suspension to August 28, 2008 — when the athlete effectively stopped racing since he could no longer get a license — instead of January 22, 2009, the date fixed by the International Cycling Union (UCI).
Schumacher was one of six athletes who, either during or after the 2008 Tour de France — where he won two stages — tested positive for the banned-blood booster erythropoietin (EPO) CERA.
Before his offense was even known, Schumacher competed at the Beijing Olympic Games in August 2008, where he was also caught using CERA.
He then fell victim to a decision by France’s national anti-doping agency (AFLD) to retest samples from the Tour. In October 2008 he was told he had tested positive for CERA twice on the race.
It was not until February 2009 that cycling’s ruling body, the UCI, handed the German a two-year ban from the sport.
Two months later Schumacher was informed by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), in April 2009, that he had also tested positive for CERA in Beijing.
The German denies ever being doped and on April 1 took his case to the CAS in Lausanne.
Speaking from Germany Monday an angry Schumacher said he would ultimately have to accept the decision.
“I’m angry. You always have to prepare for the worst but I find this hard to believe,” he said.
“I’m a fighter, but I will just have to accept this decision.”