By Gregor Brown
Despite the plea of the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), Lance Armstrong now appears to have his back against the wall. The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) said on Tuesday that the Armstrong case should proceed in the hands of the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).
The USADA has charged Armstrong with possession, trafficking and administering banned drugs and methods.
Today, a federal court judge will decide if the USADA's case violates Armstrong's rights and if the USADA has jurisdiction. On August 6, the UCI said the US agency should not handle the case, but that it should go directly to the sports high court, CAS.
WADA's director general, David Howman said on Tuesday, "There is no provision within the [anti-doping] Code that allows the UCI to interfere with the USADA case based on the UCI's own rules."
The USADA filed a brief on Wednesday with the same federal court in Austin, Texas, where Armstrong argued it lacked jurisdiction. Today, the court will decide what USADA is able to do next. If it allows the agency to move ahead, Armstrong will have to accept penalties or to face arbitration.
The USADA already issued Doctor Luis Garcia del Moral and trainers, Michele Ferrari and Jose "Pepe" Martí lifetime bans. Armstrong's former team manager, Johan Bruyneel will face arbitration.
UCI attempts to block USADA Armstrong case
Schwazer Olympic doping case draws in Ferrari
Italian race walking champion Alex Schwazer admitted on Wednesday to EPO use and working with trainer Michele Ferrari. A positive test for the drug on July 30 saw him pulled from the London Olympics on Monday.
Ferrari has been banned from working with athletes in Italy since 2002. Investigators revealed in June that Filippo Pozzato (Farnese Vini) trained under Ferrari from 2005 to 2010. He faces a hearing on September 11 and a possible one-year ban.
Ferrari achieved greatest notoriety as Lance Armstrong's trainer. USADA banned Ferrari for life in July as part of its investigation into Armstrong. The Schwazer case, however, shows that he is attempting to continue his practice under the radar.
Schleck doping case goes to disciplinary committee
Fränk Schleck's doping case will head to Luxembourg's anti-doping disciplinary committee, according national newspaper Le Quotidien. The committee will rule based on his failed dope test in the Tour de France on July 14.
Schleck tested positive for diuretic Xipamide in a random doping control following the stage to Cap d'Agde. The UCI released the test result on the second rest day in Pau. His RadioShack-Nissan team sent Schleck home and continued on, winning the team classification from Sky.
The committee may shelf the case or issue a suspension. Schleck, third in the 2011 Tour, claims he was poisoned.
Lars Petter Nordhaug announced he will leave Sky after signing a two-year contract to ride for team Rabobank in 2013 and 2014.
"Sky is a great team, I was satisfied there, but I am ready to develop myself further," he said in a press release. "There were more teams interested in me. But Rabobank is a strong team with good riders, I really want to ride with them."
Sky's Italian, Davide Appollonio will ride for team AG2R. Samuel Dumoulin (Cofidis) and Carlos Betancur (Acqua & Sapone) will also join the French team.
Daniel Oss and Dominik Nerz will leave Liquigas-Cannondale for BMC Racing.
The future of Joe Dombrowski is still up in the air. The 21-year-old American won the Baby Giro d'Italia in June and drew interest from several WorldTour teams.
Cycling Weekly's 2012-13 transfer index