Tour Won't Take Riders Who Reject Pledge

Tuesday, June 26th 2007, 2:51 pm
By: News On 6

PARIS (AP) _ The Tour de France won't accept riders who refuse to sign a new anti-doping charter.

Cycling's governing body, the UCI, introduced the charter June 19 and asked all 600 ProTour cyclists to sign. Tour director Christian Prudhomme said the race will, if necessary, go to the Court of Arbitration for Sport to try to reject riders who refuse to sign.

``We will oppose the presence at the start of the Tour de France of riders who have not signed the UCI's anti-doping charter,'' Prudhomme said in an interview with French newspaper Le Monde published Tuesday. The Tour starts July 7.

The UCI asked riders to pledge they are not involved in doping and that they will submit DNA samples to Spanish authorities probing a massive doping ring there. In the statement, cyclists also pledge to pay a year's salary on top of their two-year ban if found guilty of drug use.

The UCI will publish on its Web site a list of those cyclists who sign. Although the federation can't force riders to sign, the UCI is asking team managers to consider that when deciding whether to enter riders in a race.