LANDIS PUSHES FOR DELAY IN FRENCH DOPING ENQUIRY

Floyd Landis accepts defeat in 2006 Tour

An American newspaper has reported Floyd Landis is pushing for a delay in the French Anti-Doping Agency (AFLD) investigation into his positive tests for testosterone during the 2006 Tour.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the American?s defense team has said that rather than have to face an enquiry in France and one in the United States simultaneously, Landis would prefer that the French enquiry be suspended.

The French enquiry is due to open on February 8th with a scheduled hearing for Landis, although the American is not expected to attend. There is speculation that the entire case will be put on hold shortly afterwards.

The AFLD investigation could lead to a scenario where Landis is banned from racing by one anti-doping authority but allowed to compete by another. Any AFLD ban would only apply in France, and Landis could not be stripped of his Tour title by the AFLD - that decision can only be taken by the UCI - but a ban would stop the American from taking part in the Tour in the future.

Just to make matters even more confusing recent French legislation means the ALFD has no longer any right to investigate potential anti-doping offences by foreign riders. But because Landis positive for testosterone happened last July, before the legislation went through French Parliament, the AFLD has the right to open up an enquiry into the Lanids case.

However, Landis legal adviser Maurice Suh recently told the American media that "We believe it's strongly in Floyd's interest to not have to defend two actions simultaneously in two different countries." World Anti-Doping Agency President Richard Pound has also called for the French to suspend their hearing. Landis US investigation is due to take place some time in March.

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