The 'A'-samples had been subjected to the routine screening test panel which includes the testosterone:epitestosterone (T:E) ratio analysis but not the IRMS analysis for synthetic testosterone.
The other half of those urine samples were tested by IRMS at the French laboratory last week, and allegedly show several samples with traces of exogenous testosterone, backing up the laboratory's previous results on the sample from stage 17, which had a high T:E ratio and was later found to have traces of exogenous testosterone by IRMS. However, no the results had not yet been officially released by the LNDD at the time of this posting.
If correct, the results will bolster USADA's case against Landis, which goes in front of an arbitration panel on May 14. Landis faces a two year sanction and the loss of his Tour de France title if he loses the case.
While L'Equipe states that the analysis was done in the presence of two expert witnesses appointed by Landis and two for USADA, Landis' spokesperson Michael Henson was quick to release a statement which claims that Landis' expert witness, former UCLA antidoping laboratory director of clients, Paul Scott, was denied entry to the LNDD. "According to Scott, LNDD lab director Jacques de Ceaurriz did not allow him to enter the facility Sunday morning. Ceaurriz cited direct orders from USADA to prohibit any further observation of the ongoing retesting."
The press release stated that, "As such, the analysis of two samples was conducted without a Landis representative as witness. Such behavior constitutes a clear and direct infringement of Landis' rights while casting severe doubt on the integrity of an already dubious process."
The statement continued, "This latest incident comes on the heels of a week in which Landis' observers have been repeatedly and improperly restricted from accessing key phases of data processing and analysis while USADA's expert and lawyer were able to have free lab access and directed the retesting process of LNDD.
According to the statement, the USADA observers were seen providing instructions to the LNDD staff and conferring with them in private during the sample processing.
Landis' legal team had previously fought against having the samples tested, and then argued for having them analysed at the UCLA lab rather than the LNDD, but that request was denied.
The World anti-doping agency, WADA, told Cyclingnews that since the re-testing of the samples was at the request of USADA, and not part of the normal testing procedures, that they do not receive the results of the testing. However, the leak of the results to L'Equipe was a concern. "WADA is concerned and disappointed by any breach of confidentiality that may occur following laboratory analysis... WADA's role in this case is to assess the sanctioning process conducted by the relevant anti-doping organizations," said Frédéric Donzé, WADA's media relations manager. "Should WADA consider that a decision does not comply with the World Anti-Doping Code, the Agency determines whether it should exercise any rights of appeal that may exist."
Landis reacted to the news saying, "This is yet another in a series of malicious actions by USADA that tramples my right to have my case heard in fair and just way," said Landis. "How can I be expected to prove my innocence while USADA endeavors to break their own rules at every turn? I’m infuriated by the behavior of USADA and the LNDD. Together, they have turned this proceeding into a full-scale attack on my civil rights and a mockery of justice."
In the middle of horse country, in The Garden State
When I went into work today, one of my colleagues came out of his office looking really tired and down. I thought it was because he was busy getting his exams and finals ready. He looks up and said: "the Landis news it not good. I am so bummed"
and here I thought from teh way he was acting that he was about to tell me he had got into a car crash or some other horrible thing
Sorry. When I refresh my browser, this forum has those threads that I have not reviewed in bold type - or so I thought. I did not look far enough down the page. FWIW though, the last time I posted a link here instead of the whole article someone complained that I should not have put up just the link. I will ask the mods to remove this thread.
Bottom line with me still rests with the competency of the French Lab. Once again they have not followed protocol and released the news to a news paper. Regardless of Flandis' guilt or innocence this lab should be stripped of it's license to test for WADA. It has over and over again shown it's contempt for it's own rules and violated the privacy of rider after rider. Until the UCI and WADA can use a trusted facility to do it's testing I believe no one, not the governing bodies or the riders. This whole process is a joke.
Bottom line with me still rests with the competency of the French Lab. ... This whole process is a joke.
I especially like this part,
"The other half of those urine samples were tested by IRMS at the French laboratory last week, and allegedly show several samples with traces of exogenous testosterone, backing up the laboratory's previous results on the sample from stage 17, ..."
Several? Doesn't that mean that some did not show the presence? And since exogenous testosterone either was present in all the samples or none of them, doesn't that show the lab can not reliably test for the presence of synthetic testosterone? (remember this is the lab that only requires one out of four markers to declare a sample positive, not the U.S. standard of three out of four and they were presumably on their best behavior using the best techs and equipment given the visibility of the tests). It seems to me that statement doesn't imply Landis's guilt, but rather exonerates him.