The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) confirmed on Thursday afternoon that Alberto Contador’s hearing schedule for June 2011 has now been postponed “in order to give to all parties concerned reasonable time to prepare”.

The hearing will study the evidence in Contador’s case relating to his positive anti-doping test for clenbuterol at the 2010 Tour de France. The Spanish Cycling Federation (RFEC) had acquitted Contador allowing him to return to racing. Subsequently both the Union Cycliste Internationale(UCI) and World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) had lodged appeals with CAS, seeking a ban for the positive.

No new date has yet been set, but it is likely that it will be after the 2011 Tour de France in July, creating the possibility that Contador could ride the event with the hearing pending. Contador’s participation in the event could be at the discretion of Tour organiser ASO, although Contador could appeal against any decision not to let him race.

The Spaniard failed a test for clenbuterol during the final rest day of the 2010 Tour de France – which he won overall – on July 21. He has blamed the positive on consuming a tainted steak brought by a friend from Spain.

Contador is currently leading the Giro d’Italia.

The CAS statement in full reads:

Following the agreement between the Appellants and the Respondents, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has accepted to postpone the hearing in this matter in order to give to all parties concerned reasonable time to prepare for such hearing and to guarantee the participation in person of witnesses and experts. Accordingly, the CAS Panel has decided to cancel the hearing initially scheduled for 6-7-8 June 2011.

New hearing dates will be fixed as soon as possible.

Related links

Contador hearing could be delayed until after Tour

Contador clenbuterol case: CAS selects hearing panel

CAS to make Contador decision before Tour de France

WADA appeals against Contador acquittal

UCI to appeal to CAS in Contador case

Contador now cleared of clenbuterol charges

Spanish media claims Contador could avoid ban

Contador could use ‘Gasquet’s Kiss’ theory to back case

Contador says he will fight on despite provisional ban

UCI awaits final Spanish decision in Contador case

Contador tests positive for clenbuterol