Angry Vinokourov retires - UCI surprised about one year ban

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07.12.2007/ An angry Alexander Vinokourov announced his retirement today but said he would fight to restore his honour. The UCI issued a statement that the organisation is surprised about the one year ban that was sentenced yesterday by the Kazack Cycling Federation. 

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Alexander Vinokourov after he finished this years Fleche Wallonne (picture: cyclingheroes)

Yesterday Vinokourov was sentenced with a one year ban for blood doping during this years Tour de France.The winner of the 2005 edition of Lège-Bastogne-Liège announced his retirement today. Durig a press conference today, Vinokourov said: "I quit with professional cycling." The 34 year old added: "The decision is final." Vinokourov seemed to be angry about his ban: "I don't want to be part of this sport anymore. I shut the door and leave." Vinokourov continued by saying: "Its sad it has to end this way but I want to restore my honour. I want to proof my innocence."

Meanwhile the UCI issued a statement saying: "

The Kazakhstan Cycling Federation has announced today that they have imposed a 12 month suspension on Alexandre Vinokourov for the use of the prohibited method of homologous blood transfusion during the 2007 Tour de France.

The UCI is surprised by this decision. All the elements available indicate that the rider should incur a 2 year suspension. Article 261 of the UCI Anti-Doping Rules provides for a 2 year suspension for a first offence of using a prohibited method.

The UCI has requested the full decision and case file from the Federation. Upon receipt, the decision and reasons of the hearing body will be reviewed. If the UCI determines that the decision is not in accordance with UCI Anti-Doping Rules, an appeal to the Court of Arbitration of Sport will be lodged." 

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