Wednesday, 26 September, 2018

Tour de France -- Chris Froome and team Sky booed at race presentation

Chris Froome said he was always confident he would be cleared of wrongdoing Chris Froome said he was always confident he would be cleared of wrongdoing
Cassandra Castillo | 12 July, 2018, 21:37

Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme urges fans to "keep both feet on the ground" when four-time champion Chris Froome rides by.

The four-time Tour de France victor tested positive for excessive levels of salbutamol during last year's Vuelta a Espana but the World Anti-Doping Agency concluded Froome's results did not constitute an adverse analytical finding.

"But we're all pros, we know how to fuel, we don't need to read online what Sky say they're doing".

Most of the teams participating in this year's race were well received, but the same could not be said for Sky, who were jeered from the outset.

Froome will be supported by a typically strong Team Sky squad in France, and appeared at Wednesday's press conference alongside team-mates Geraint Thomas, Luke Rowe, Wout Poels, Michal Kwiatkowski, Egan Bernal, Jonathan Castroviejo and Gianni Moscon.

"But that data is available, and I would like to think that as people understand that more, they will understand my decision to keep on racing knowing I have certainly done nothing wrong", Froome said.

"It wasn't even technically an "AAF" (adverse analytical finding) and few people understood this subtle difference". World Anti-Doping Agency rules state an athlete can be cleared for excessive salbutamol use if he proves it was due to an appropriate therapeutic dosage.

More news: Monstrous iceberg seen breaking off Greenland glacier

Team Sky boss Dave Brailsford praised Chris Froome's attitude throughout the International Cycling Union (UCI) investigation into a doping sample, insisting his lead rider deserves a lot of credit.

"Of course it has been damaging", he said when asked about his reputation. "Now I just want to draw a line in the sand and move on".

"Doing the Tour de France and the Vuelta (a Espana) past year taught me an fantastic amount about how to manage my training".

It came as French star Romain Bardet called for calm.

"I call on all spectators to protect all the athletes and to respect the judicial decision so that Chris Froome can compete in a safe and serene environment like all other athletes". "That's just something you deal with in the moment".

I was here in 2011 with Alberto Contador, who crushed it in the Giro and was fifth - which is nothing to sneeze at - but couldn't back it up in the Tour.

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