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Tour de France organizers exclude Astana team; Alberto Contador may not defend title

Updated: February 13, 2008, 9:37 PM ET
Associated Press

PARIS -- Tour de France champion Alberto Contador likely won't get to defend his title after Tour organizers excluded the Astana cycling team from this year's race.

Astana was banned from the race Wednesday because of its past doping issues. The "damage caused by this team to the Tour de France and cycling in general, both in 2006 and 2007," led to their exclusion, organizers said.

Astana pulled out of the race last year after Alexandre Vinokourov, a pre-race favorite, tested positive ...

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