Monday, July 16, 2007
UPDATE 1-Cycling-Mazzoleni leaves Astana, could still race
(Changes dateline, recasts with Mazzoleni clarification)
MILAN, July 16 - Italian cyclist Eddy Mazzoleni
said on Monday he had left the Astana team but had not retired.
The team said in a statement earlier that the 34-year-old,
who finished third in this year's Giro d'Italia, had retired
with immediate effect because his involvement in a doping
However, Mazzoleni later said his departure from the team
did not necessarily mean the end of his career.
"I have only decided to rescind my contract with Astana to
protect the image of the team and my colleagues," he told
"Only after hearing the outcome of this situation will I
take a decision. If it falls in my favour I will continue to
Mazzoleni appeared before the Italian Olympic Committee
(CONI) last Friday to face questions about a doping probe being
conducted by Italian police.
The long-running investigation focuses on doctor Carlo
Santuccione, who is alleged to have supplied athletes with
Mazzoleni was left out of the Tour de France because of his
links to the investigation.
Giro winner Danilo Di Luca is waiting to hear if he will be
punished by CONI after phone intercepts from 2004 implicated him
in the investigation.
Former pole vault world champion Giuseppe Gibilisco has
already announced his retirement having been found guilty of a
doping violation as a result of the same inquiry.
(Additional reporting by Julien Pretot in Tignes, France)