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Stefano Garzelli's 2002 probenecid bust - doping or stitch-up?

fmk_RoI said:
In an interview over on Podium Cafe, Benjo Maso mentioned Stefano Garzelli's 2002 probenecid bust and doubts surrounding it at the time.

Anyone here got any info on this story?

Was it a stitch-up, aimed to embarass Mapei?

Or was Garzelli just a silly little boy?

Mr. Hein Verbruggen openly criticised mr. Giorgio Squinzi's (Mapei Boss) allegations that all the Top 5 Grand Tour riders of the late 90's were doped. There was also bad blood because he claimed that the Mapei team monopolised the young talents market (Pozzato, Cancellara, Rogers, Eisel, Davis and many others rode for the Mapei Espoirs Team in 2002), and so on. In a way, it's possible to speculate...
 
I can think of many reasons to want to do the dirty on Mapei. But Squinzy seemed a little like Gerolsteiner's Holczer in some ways, a lot of talk about doping on other teams when he should have been looking to his own.

Does anyone know if Garzelli ever spoken about it in the years since?
 
A

Anonymous

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fmk_RoI said:
I can think of many reasons to want to do the dirty on Mapei. But Squinzy seemed a little like Gerolsteiner's Holczer in some ways, a lot of talk about doping on other teams when he should have been looking to his own.

Does anyone know if Garzelli ever spoken about it in the years since?

Or Lefevere for that matter...
 
fmk_RoI said:
I can think of many reasons to want to do the dirty on Mapei. But Squinzy seemed a little like Gerolsteiner's Holczer in some ways, a lot of talk about doping on other teams when he should have been looking to his own.

Does anyone know if Garzelli ever spoken about it in the years since?

I don't know but i remember that Mapei forced him to continue in that Giro until the counter-analysis came out. It was a strange situation...

I admired that team (fell in love with the team kit when i first saw it) and i believe that mr. Squinzi and the director of the Mapei Centre Aldo Sassi tried to promote clean cycling within the team. It's important to note that controversial Patrick Levefere left the management of Mapei in 1999 to create his own team (Domo Farm Frites) taking with him the belgian part of the team. Furthermore, the team's results in the Grand Tours, with the exception of the win in the 1995 Giro with Tony Rominger, were generally poor, despite having competent leaders like Pavel Tonkov or Stefano Garzelli. Maybe they lacked the "extra" that certain teams had, and ended up concentrating on stage wins from Tom Steels and Andrea Tafi or a top ten result from riders like Daniele Nardello or Gianni Faresin.

And if i remember correctly, Tony Rominger left Mapei in 1997 for Cofidis because mr. Squinzi wanted him to end his partership with a renowned doctor (mr. Orange Juice); Michele Bartoli was fired midway through the 2001 season for similar reasons and even Patrik Sinkewitz said that there was no organized "system" at Mapei, unlike Quick-Step...

Mapei also invested in the Mapei Training Centre in Castellanza to assist the cycling team and had an under-23 squad to introduce young talents into the professional scene without going through the jungle of the italian under-23 peloton.

In my opinion, Mapei's departure was a big loss for cycling but at the time, the UCI and the other big bosses of the sport were happy with it...