Contador clenbuterol decision due mid-January

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Alberto Contador will hear the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) ruling of his case mid-January, 18 months after he tested positive for clenbuterol at the 2010 Tour de France. The CAS secretary general, Matthieu Reeb told France's RMC Sport yesterday the Swiss court will rule between January 15 and 20.

The Spaniard maintains his innocence and says the Clenbuterol came from eating a contaminated steak during the race. In February, the Spanish Cycling Federation (RFEC) ruled that he did not intentionally ingest the prohibited drug. The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) and World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) appealed the decision to the CAS in March.

Contador is three-time winner of the Tour de France and this year, won his second Giro d'Italia title. He faces a possible two-year ban and the loss of his 2010 Tour title.

Schlecks star in Tour de France documentary

Andy and Fränk Schleck star in a documentary film, The Road Uphill, about their quest to win this year's Tour de France with new team Leopard-Trek. The 90-minute film debuted in their home country, Luxembourg on Saturday.

"This intimate cinematic portrait of two brothers and a team, who are under pressure to live up to the expectations of their country," read a press release, "takes us on a journey into the lives of these professional cyclists."

The brothers finished on the podium this year behind Cadel Evans (BMC Racing), Andy second and Fränk third. It was the fourth time for Andy to finish second.

Jean-Louis Schuller's film follows Leopard's debut season and contains interviews with many of the Schlecks' team-mates. It is similar to a film released last year about team HTC, Chasing Legends.

The Road Uphill features English subtitles. No details were given on its release date, but it is expected to be available on DVD or though internet downloads.

GreenEdge announces its sports directors and Down Under team

Australia's first top-division team, GreenEdge announced on Friday that it will debut with six sports directors.

General Manager Shayne Bannan said in a press statement that his choice of directors reflects GreenEdge's initial formation: "to gather experienced and talented people in the sport whose competences compliment each other."

The directors include Australians Matt White and Neil Stephens, Italians Vittorio Algeri and Danilo Nardello, Belgian Lorenzo Lapage and Frenchman Lionel Marie.

All six have already worked as directors: Stephens with Movistar, Algeri with Milram, Nardello with Geox, Lapage with Astana, and White and Marie with Garmin.

White is also head coach of the national road team. Garmin fired him last year after he referred a rider to a doctor. The team's policy is that its medical staff first approves all referrals.

He will help GreenEdge in its debut year, starting at the Tour Down Under. Yesterday morning, the team released its roster for the six-day stage race. Defending champion Cameron Meyer will lead the team, which includes Matt Goss, Stuart O'Grady, Leigh Howard, Robbie McEwen, Jack Bobridge and Simon Gerrans.

Savio clears name

Gianni Savio cleared his name and avoided a four-year doping suspension this week. The Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) requested the ban and said that Savio violated World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) code 2.8, giving or helping a rider dope.

The Italian has been managing teams for 27 years, this year second division team, Androni Giocattoli. He won two stages at this year's Giro d'Italia with José Rujano and Ángel Vicioso.

Former rider, Luca De Angeli told a Massa public prosecutor and the CONI that Savio helped him dope. De Angeli rode for Savio's team in 2003 and 2005, failing a drug test for EPO the second year. He also failed a doping test as an amateur.

Savio's lawyer went on the offensive and instead of waiting for the Italian anti-doping tribunal hearing. He argued De Angeli's claims in Massa, where the investigation started. The public prosecutor, who originally sent the investigation's documentation to the CONI, agreed that De Angeli's claims were unfounded.

The CONI has yet to comment.

Riccò blood doping case continues

Riccardo Riccò will face the Italian anti-doping tribunal (TNA) on February 3 in Rome and a possible 12-year suspension. The Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) announced the court date on Monday.

The CONI recommended the ban after it reviewed evidence that Riccò blood doped. In February, he nearly died from a botch transfusion. He admitted to a nurse that he had done it on his own with blood that been stored in his refrigerator for 25 days.

Riccò change his story later. He denies that he transfused his blood and any admission to the medic.

He already served a 20-month ban for doping at the 2008 Tour with EPO. He briefly returned to cycling, winning a stage at Settimana Lombarda, a stage at Giro del Trentino, and two stages and the overall Tour of Austria, and the Coppa Sabatini one-day race.

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Gregor Brown

Gregor Brown is an experienced cycling journalist, based in Florence, Italy. He has covered races all over the world for over a decade - following the Giro, Tour de France, and every major race since 2006. His love of cycling began with freestyle and BMX, before the 1998 Tour de France led him to a deep appreciation of the road racing season.