Cycling: Contador to learn fate before Tour starts

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The Independent Online

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has reiterated its aim of ruling on the Alberto Contador case before the Tour de France after naming the arbitration panel for the hearing.

The International Cycling Union (UCI) and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) last month appealed to Cas over a decision by the Spanish Cycling Federation (RFEC) to acquit Contador following a failed drugs test last year.

The three-time Tour de France champion insists his inadvertent ingestion of contaminated meat caused his positive test for clenbuterol on 21 July, the final rest day of last year's Tour, which he won.

The RFEC initially proposed giving the 28-year-old a one-year ban before subsequently acquitting him. The case will be heard by Efraim Barak (Israel), Quentin Byrne-Sutton (Switzerland) and Ulrich Haas (Germany).

A statement from CAS read: "The written proceedings in this matter are likely to be concluded at the end of May and the CAS envisages to hold a hearing in June 2011, which would allow the settlement of the dispute before the end of June 2011. The hearing date will be published once it has been fixed."

Meanwhile, Pavel Brutt of Russia took the overall lead of the Tour de Romandie, Switzerland, after winning the second stage yesterday.