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Just posted over on Cyclingnews:

Astana-Würth leaves the Tour
Dutch television's sports anchorman Mart Smeets has just reported that the Astana-Würth team has left the Tour de France. The team had five of its Tour riders officially named in the Operacion Puerto affair (Sergio Paulinho, Isidro Nozal, Allan Davis, Alberto Contador, Joseba Beloki), as well as several others (Michele Scarponi, Marcos Serrano, David Etxebarria, Angel Vicioso, Unai Osa, Jörg Jaksche), and of course ex-team manager Manolo Saiz. The team therefore wouldn't have had enough riders to start.

In an official statement, Active Bay, the team's management company, confirmed the news. "In view of the content of the dossier sent to Spanish authorities, Active Bay has decided, in accordance with the Ethical Code signed between the UCI ProTour's teams, to withdraw from the Tour de France those riders that appear in the above-mentioned dossier.

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Daily_Spin said:
Just posted over on Cyclingnews:

Astana-Würth leaves the Tour
Dutch television's sports anchorman Mart Smeets has just reported that the Astana-Würth team has left the Tour de France. The team had five of its Tour riders officially named in the Operacion Puerto affair (Sergio Paulinho, Isidro Nozal, Allan Davis, Alberto Contador, Joseba Beloki), as well as several others (Michele Scarponi, Marcos Serrano, David Etxebarria, Angel Vicioso, Unai Osa, Jörg Jaksche), and of course ex-team manager Manolo Saiz. The team therefore wouldn't have had enough riders to start.

In an official statement, Active Bay, the team's management company, confirmed the news. "In view of the content of the dossier sent to Spanish authorities, Active Bay has decided, in accordance with the Ethical Code signed between the UCI ProTour's teams, to withdraw from the Tour de France those riders that appear in the above-mentioned dossier.

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NOT FAIR!
Vino and Kashechkin were not among those involved. They don't disqualify the entire T-mobile or CSC squad, then why should Vino be punished? Vino is as guilty as Hincapie, Landis, Leipheimer, Evans, Zabriskie and others. So why should Vino sit out and others go on?
 

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55x11 said:
NOT FAIR!
Vino and Kashechkin were not among those involved. They don't disqualify the entire T-mobile or CSC squad, then why should Vino be punished? Vino is as guilty as Hincapie, Landis, Leipheimer, Evans, Zabriskie and others. So why should Vino sit out and others go on?
It's not like the just arbitrarily made up a rule to exclude Vino. It's an established rule regarding the number of riders required to start.
 

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55x11 said:
NOT FAIR!
Vino and Kashechkin were not among those involved. They don't disqualify the entire T-mobile or CSC squad, then why should Vino be punished? Vino is as guilty as Hincapie, Landis, Leipheimer, Evans, Zabriskie and others. So why should Vino sit out and others go on?
In their press release, AW said they were withdrawing because they couldn't field the minimum of 6 riders.

Riders will have to be a hell of a lot more careful when signing with teams now!
 

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Doc_D said:
I know it isn't likely, but would the rules exclude Vino from riding with another team?
There's probably no rule covering this specific situation (i.e., "If any entrant's team is deemed unable or unfit to participate ...") but there are probably procedural requirements (i.e., the paperwork) that would preclude him moving to another team on such short notice.
 

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coreyb said:
It's not like the just arbitrarily made up a rule to exclude Vino. It's an established rule regarding the number of riders required to start.
Yeahh,,, riiiight. But they had to drop this bomb on the day before TdF, knowing quite well Vino will have no time to look for the other team.

Let's be clear - the officials "played" the rules to exclude the entire team. Vino, Kashechkin never had a chance. They lost their sponsors, went to their home country, found new sponsors. Not good enough, apparently.

If Vino is punished just for being on the same team as some of the suspended riders, how about suspending entire teams of CSC, T-Mobile, Phonak, etc?
 

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ChilliConCarnage said:
In their press release, AW said they were withdrawing because they couldn't field the minimum of 6 riders.

Riders will have to be a hell of a lot more careful when signing with teams now!
Well, what do you want them to do? Go around asking - oh, and by the way - how many riders on your teams are doping?
 

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55x11 said:
If Vino is punished just for being on the same team as some of the suspended riders, how about suspending entire teams of CSC, T-Mobile, Phonak, etc?
So why don't we just suspend everyone and call it a wash this year.......the riders on the list got popped, Vino was not targeted.....thems the breaks....live by the sword......
 

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55x11 said:
But they had to drop this bomb on the day before TdF, knowing quite well Vino will have no time to look for the other team.
What? The tour officials didn't drop any bomb.
55x11 said:
Let's be clear - the officials "played" the rules to exclude the entire team. Vino, Kashechkin never had a chance.
That's as clear as mud. How did they "play" the rules?
55x11 said:
If Vino is punished just for being on the same team as some of the suspended riders, how about suspending entire teams of CSC, T-Mobile, Phonak, etc?
As stated numerous times in this thread, he isn't being punished for that.
 

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55x11 said:
Well, what do you want them to do? Go around asking - oh, and by the way - how many riders on your teams are doping?
55x11 - I usually agree with what you post, but I have no clue what you're talking about here. AW wasn't targeted in any way. EVERY team signed an ethics statement stating they would suspend any rider connected with the Fuentes affair. That's why Ullrich, Basso, Mancebo, etc. etc. etc. are all out. So AW had to do the same thing that EVERY team is under compulsion to do, which is to suspend the riders on the list. That left them with less than the 6 riders required to start. That's not a new rule.

I'm not sure if you're saying the Spanish police were somehow complicitly involved, but I don't believe they would collaborate with the UCI/ASO/ProTour to try and time this so that it happened the day before the tour. I think they may have attempted to expidite their findings to try to get it out before the Tour, at the urgings of Tour officials, but I don't see any conspiracy against AW.

I'm just as disappointed that Vino's going home, but that's the way it goes...
 

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ChilliConCarnage said:
55x11 - I usually agree with what you post, but I have no clue what you're talking about here. AW wasn't targeted in any way. EVERY team signed an ethics statement stating they would suspend any rider connected with the Fuentes affair. That's why Ullrich, Basso, Mancebo, etc. etc. etc. are all out. So AW had to do the same thing that EVERY team is under compulsion to do, which is to suspend the riders on the list. That left them with less than the 6 riders required to start. That's not a new rule.

I'm not sure if you're saying the Spanish police were somehow complicitly involved, but I don't believe they would collaborate with the UCI/ASO/ProTour to try and time this so that it happened the day before the tour. I think they may have attempted to expidite their findings to try to get it out before the Tour, at the urgings of Tour officials, but I don't see any conspiracy against AW.

I'm just as disappointed that Vino's going home, but that's the way it goes...
It sucks, the timing of it sucks. He is definately the big loser in all of this. Even if AW were allowed to start, the would have been disqualified for not having enough people finish the TTT.
 

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55x11 said:
Well, what do you want them to do? Go around asking - oh, and by the way - how many riders on your teams are doping?
Well that might be a start to cleaning up the sport. Riders need to get their act cleaned up.
 

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coreyb said:
I thought there wasn't a TTT this year
I think the rules state the minimum number of riders a team needs to field to start the race. It seems they don't have enough. I'm pissed because I picked Vino to win it.
 

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ChilliConCarnage said:
55x11 - I usually agree with what you post, but I have no clue what you're talking about here. AW wasn't targeted in any way. EVERY team signed an ethics statement stating they would suspend any rider connected with the Fuentes affair. That's why Ullrich, Basso, Mancebo, etc. etc. etc. are all out. So AW had to do the same thing that EVERY team is under compulsion to do, which is to suspend the riders on the list. That left them with less than the 6 riders required to start. That's not a new rule.

I'm not sure if you're saying the Spanish police were somehow complicitly involved, but I don't believe they would collaborate with the UCI/ASO/ProTour to try and time this so that it happened the day before the tour. I think they may have attempted to expidite their findings to try to get it out before the Tour, at the urgings of Tour officials, but I don't see any conspiracy against AW.

I'm just as disappointed that Vino's going home, but that's the way it goes...
No, no, I know - I am not implying a conspiracy here. But someone decided to deliver the "news" about who will be excluded the day before the Tour, to make sure riders and teams didn't have time to respond. In the end, a lot of teams got screwed.
But Vino and Kaschechkin got screwed the most.

I just think it's unfair, that's all. Can you imagine being Vino? You get no support at T-Mobile, look for transfer - deal with Disco falls though, so you have to take the offer from Saiz. You get two Kazakh riders to join you there. You don't do any spring races, working towards the Tour. Then early in your first season manager gets involved in a scandal. Sponsors withdraw. The team future is questionable. So you go back to your home country and convince a bunch of businessmen to sponsor the team instead. They agree. You show up to the Tour only to hear you are out, you are in, you are out, you are in, and finally you are out again. Can this guy get a break? I would be royally pissed if I was Vino.

Sorry, but I feel strongly about this...
 

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coreyb said:
Impossible to determine. If Basso and/or Ullrich are innocent, aren't they getting screwed the most?
Well, I am assuming that Basso and Ullrich wouldn't be dismissed so easily if there was no solid evidence against them. Remember that the team management was involved in both decisisions. As much as I would like to believe they are innocent and they were framed, this is even crazier conspiracy theory than believing that the whole sting operation was just so they can get rid of Vino. Or that we never landed on the moon. This is for people in tinfoil helmet liners.

I gave Hamilton a lot of benefit of the doubt. But now I am convinced that of all "nicest-guys" out there, he is the best liar. I agree with others that strangely enough I do not care as much about cheating, as I do about people declaring their innocence when caught and leading their fans to believe they are falsely accused. Doping is a professional choice, as far as I am concerned. But misleading your fans into believing you are innocent and swearing on your dog's grave that you have done nothing wrong while in fact you did, is something that stinks on a much more personal level.

I think today's news hasn't settled in our brains just yet. When it does - and it may happen tomorrow or next week or next month, we will all suddenly realize how significant today was.
 
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