March 21, 2008 (Freiburg, Germany) — An enquiry examining allegations of team doping by T-Mobile (formerly Telekom and now High Road) between 1993 and 2006 released its preliminary report this week according to AFP. The report concludes that allegations of team doping centering around Freiburg’s University Medical Clinic are probably true. Former team cyclists Rolf Aldag, Erik Zabel, Bert Dietz, Christian Henn and Patrik Sinkewitz were questioned by the enquiry. All five cyclists have confessed to using banned blood-booster erythropoietin (EPO), but none currently ride for High Road.
The enquiry was launched last spring after two Freiburg doctors – Lothar Heinrich and Andreas Schmid – were accused of supervising team doping sessions. Now, two other doctors, Andreas Blum and Stefan Vogt, have been named in the enquiry’s report. The clinic chairman, Matthias Brandis, is quoted as saying that the doctors received a lot of money and their work was unethical.
Enquiry chairman, Hans-Joachim Schaefer, promised that this is only the beginning and more details will be released over the coming months. Schaefer also expressed sympathy for the cyclists whom he said had to integrate themselves into teams where doping was going on.
Andreas Kloeden (now with Astana), a runner-up in the 2004 and 2006 editions of the TdF, could be the target of future investigations based on receipts for medicinal substances delivered to his wife. The enquiry may also examine the role played by Georg Huber, the former team doctor to Jan Ullrich (winner of the 1997 TdF).