at an intensive training session in NY NY (link)
From TBV correspondent Marc comes the translation of the official AFLD communique from today's hearing in France:
Feb. 8, 2007
Mr. Pierre Bordry, President of the FFLD, summoned Mr. Floyd Landis [to appear] before the College of the Agency, meeting Feb. 8, 2007, to examine a disciplinary proceeding opened July 27, 2006, following an anti-doping test July 20, 2006, at the end of the 17th stage of the 2006 Tour de France, whose result revealed the presence of exogenous testosterone. Mr. Landis requested, in a letter dated January 30, 2007 and read by his attorney during the hearing, that the AFLD allow him the possibility to give priority to his defense against an American disciplinary proceeding regarding the same facts, for which he has been summoned on the decision of the UCI and inasmuch as he is licensed by the American Cycling Federation. He specifies in this letter that he undertakes not to participate in any cycling race in France from this date to the end of 2007, and in particular not to race in the 2007 Tour de France. Taking account of this promise, the College of the Agency has decided to postpone further examination of the case until a date can be set based on the outcome of the proceedings before the USADA, but in any case, no later than the end of June 2007, it being noted that the USADA hearing is currently scheduled for May 14. The Agency reserves the right to prescribe any further measures regarding the hearing which it deems appropriate. Should the undertaking made by the athlete not be respected, Mr. Landis would be summoned without delay to appear again before the College of the Agency.
NY Times article about the event refers to Marc's translation above in a link. (See the RELATED box.)
The LAT's Michael Hiltzik weighs in on the AFLD decision, and includes important details about the upcoming USADA hearings in May:
The decision will allow the California-based cyclist to focus on his appeal of charges brought under the international sports doping system and prosecuted by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).
That appeal hearing is scheduled to open on May 14 before a panel of three arbitrators. They are Christopher Campbell, a San Francisco lawyer and former Olympic wrestler, who was selected by Landis; Richard McLaren, a London, Ontario, lawyer selected by USADA, and Patrice Brunet, a Montreal lawyer chosen as the panel's chairman by the other two arbitrators.
Meanwhile, sources confirmed Thursday that Landis had rejected a request by USADA to retest eight of his urine samples, including six from the 2006 Tour, that had previously been ruled negative for doping. A report of the request appeared in L'Equipe, a French sports journal.
MSNBC posts the Reuters story with the addition of (at least a portion of) the actual letter Landis submitted to the AFLD panel:
“Let me assure you that I fully share the goal of preventing illegal doping. In this case, and in order to avoid any misunderstanding, I agree voluntarily not to participate in any professional or amateur cycling event in France until December 31, 2007, and in particular the Tour de France 2007.”
From the Tornoto Globe and Mail as well as from USAToday, and the IHT comes an AP piece stating that the AFLD has decided to postpone its Landis decision after Landis agreed NOT to race in France in 2007:
The AFLD had been expected to rule, but agreed to an appeal by Landis to postpone their decision until after the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency rules in May, AFLD president Pierre Bordry said. The decision came after Landis pledged not to race in France in 2007, Bordry said in a statement he read to reporters in Paris.
Reuters has a bit of a different slant without the Landis letter, but the same story:
"Mr. Landis has asked the AFLD, in a letter read by his lawyer during the hearing, to have the possibility to first defend himself in front of the American disciplinary body (the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency)," AFLD said in a statement.
"He says in this very letter that he promises not to take part in any race in France until the end of 2007, in particular in the 2007 Tour de France.
"The AFLD subsequently decided to postpone the examination of his case to a date that will be set according to the course of the procedure before the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency."
The AFP newswire posts the above with a mention that the AFLD hearing will take place no later than June.
BBC Sport writes the same story, as does CNN.com.
CyclingNews merges all the reports, and include news from L'Equipe about Landis refusing USADA permission for tests of other B samples, discussed in a separate story here.
Rant thinks that the AFLD has saved face, but may still have something up their sleeve IF Landis has a favorable outcome in his May USADA hearing.
Spinopsys thinks that Landis has bought himself some time, and may have won the first battle of a long war.
Finger Food writes a considered piece about the Landis story amongst other things, but his eyes are glazing!
Life, Liberty and Property blames the French, and USADA.
The FredCast brings some news of the Endurance Sports Awards with this rare picture of Landis wearing jacket and tie:
We also get two more reports with pix from Brooklyn, by the tag team of Suitcase of Courage and She Knits/Cycles by the Seashore. He was exploring his radical side, and she considered staring someone down who asked a rude question. It must be love. Both report that TBV got plugged and praised, which will only go to our pointy little heads.
Racin' Rick talks about FLandis and the AFLD, plus gives us more insight into last night's fund raiser in Brooklyn.
The RightRant doesn't care what you think!
Biking Bis thinks that the AFLD compromise is not a surprise.
Deadly Fast is all over the AFLD Landis hearing story.
Spinopsys looks at the leaves, and observes:
It’s funny but but looking back we should have seen that this has always been in the hands of the French - their race, their lab, their media, their rules, their sporting politicsNashville Cyclist thinks Landis should just take the ban now, then moves on to wondering if/when/how the USA should ratify the WADA code.
Thought for the Day
"Instead of burning a guy at the stake, what about burning him at the STILTS? It probably lasts longer, plus it moves around." -jh-