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

  • Geoff Waters, Durban, South Africa

    “Justice delayed is justice denied’. Watching Contador soar up the Grossglockner and over the great Dolomite climbs in this year’s Giro, in the absence of a resolution to his doping case I remained sceptical and full of niggling doubts. Also, the roadside crowds seemed visibly down on past years. Is the public finally voting about cycle sport with its feet?

  • Jon

    Great – two grand tours sabotaged by one doper who had his tainted meat excuse ready before the syringe hit the bin, and the UCI with a history of overlooking results for cyclists who make donations to ‘help in the fight against doping’ – only they meant the other side of that fight, the side where it’s about chemically assisted supermen making big bucks and a network of drug suppliers and PR people keeping a lid on things. And the there’s the Vuelta. In Spain. That’s going to be all 3 tours ruined then. 2011, the year doping killed cycling – again.

  • arronski

    no no no no no, ban him before the TDF or not at all, don’t fcuk up another grand tour for everyone !

  • Gilles

    Well, I’m in the ‘Who give’s a monkey’s camp’ Thankfully the road sport is free to watch so I haven’t invested a nickle. Never will either. Infact, I will never ever again go to see a cycle race. Never say never, but I just did. That feels real liberating. Never, there, I said it again. Never ever. And again. Never. Once more – never.

    Bingo, I’m done.

  • Mauro

    I became interested in cycling a year ago and since then all I hear and read about is scandals, controversy and wrong decisions… I think a circus is run better than pro cycling.

  • Rojales

    These so called professional bodies [ UCI , WADA , CAS] are doing more to distroy the sport than Berties duff steak. Surely there must be a time limit.

  • old man

    The whole business stinks and cycling is being left open to ridicule. There was a smell from last years Giro with all the ex druggies riding and going well; this year the exes are back in the grupeto except for “Berty”. He will deny all things allowed to ride the TdF and bring cycling into the headlines again for the wrong reasons. Don’t the press love it.

  • Vincent

    We were wrong all the time. It’s actually called CleAnbuterol!

  • MIKE

    Absolute madness.
    He had a banned substance in his body, end of story.
    So now they are going to let him ride, and probably win, the Tour, to add to his Giro win, and then find him guilty and then say he was not the winner after all?
    What about the poor guys who finish second, but get awarded the races without the satisfaction of standing on the winners podium?
    Get your act into gear. The facts have not changed and the blood tests are still positive. So what needs more time to prepare?

  • Michael Mace

    Oh, come on CAS you must be joking. It is aLmost a year since the Tour De France and to mess about like this is unfair to Contador and all of us who like cycling.
    Is the CAS made up of a load of ex M.O.D. civil servants. They certainly appear to be incompetant enough.

  • red balloon

    What a surprise. Let off the hook again. The circus still rolls on. Only in Pro cycling could this happen. If it was not for the presence of a british team in the peleton, I would turn my back on the sport

  • Chris

    They’ve had nearly a year to prepare.
    Surely these cases would be more reliable while the evidence and witness testimony is fresh? Taking more time can’t change the blood test results or make it easier to prove the “tainted steak” defence.
    In the mean time another season of Pro Tour races goes by that might have their results nullified if the accused rider is subsequently banned. Delays are bad for the sport.
    Poor show.

  • adam

    The sport is doomed…. innocent or not it should be the top priority to sort this out prior to him potentially winning the Giro and then the Tour. Or risk having him win two tours and then being stripped of both titles…

    Let’s hope ASO just refuses to let him enter. Sorry Contador, but until this mess is cleared up you should be sidelined.