Thursday, 30 June 2011

More Belgian busts - who is Sven S.?

Hot on the heels of the Wim Vansevenant dope parcel story comes news that "a former BMC part-time soigneur" named only as "Sven S." has been arrested as part of an ongoing investigation into a consignment of performance enhancing drugs detected by Belgian customs in 2009.

BMC's website
The full identity of the arrested man remains secret, but BMC - current home of such illustrious riders as Cadel Evans and George Hincapie - are denying any connection with him. Co-team owner Jim Oshowicz told reporters that he'd never heard of him: "A part-time soigneur for us? His name means nothing to me." Meanwhile, team member Greg Van Avermet says he is aware of the man but states he has never worked for BMC. But a brief search of BMC's own website reveals the existence of one Sven Schoutteten, rather embarrassingly listed as a soigneur - while it's important to point out there's no proof that this is the arrested man (and unless proven otherwise, let's assume innocent until proven guilty), BMC really should have thought this one through because it's going to raise a lot of awkward questions - the team may get a hard time from the press today at the official presentation and will have to be more guarded in what they say.

Sven Schoutetten, eh? Oops.
The intercepted consignment is believed to have been made up of around 200 doses of the notorious red blood cell production-boosting EPO, one of the best-known doping products outside the cycling world. This is yet more bad publicity that cycling really could do without just before the Tour de France, the only time of year that the world's attention is turned to the sport.

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