Jörg Jaksche: We can discuss the whole thing in court, my pleasure!

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06.07.2007/  Cyclingheroes spoke with Jörg Jacksche about the past, reactions after his confession and about Jaksche's wishes for the future.

Copyright Cyclingheroes
Jörg Jaksche talking with Manolo Saiz (picture: Cyclingheroes)

Cyclingheroes: How did you come to the decision to lay the cards on the table?

Jaksche: I thought a year long about it , in which the situation increasingly troubled me. But there was always doubt again. I thought if you have to leave cycling, then not just like that. It just can't be that the riders are always the ones who have to suffer. They are part of a system. End of story!

Cyclingheroes: Did you receive many reactions?

Jaksche: Yes there were lots of positive reactions. Also from the media.

Cyclingheroes: Hans Michael Holczer (team manager of Gerolsteiner) said at German TV that you called him during the weekend. What did you talk about with him?

Jaksche: I said hello and hung up again [Jaksche is laughing because that's what Holczer answered at the TV programm]. Seriously, I still did not know if it was right or wrong to give evidence. I called Holczer because he belongs to the spearheads in the fight against doping.

Cyclingheroes: In an interview we did last February you spoke about irregularities in the Puerto report. In the interview with German weekly 'Der Spiegel' you said that there was a selection and that you are not 'Jorge'. Can you illustrate that?

Jaskche: On the Puerto lists there were over and over again different names. Some names dissapeared, other names were added later. There are alarming inconsistencies. According to the Guardia Civil I was treated by Fuentes since 2002. But I was introduced to Fuentes in 2005. The police did a lousy job. It would be very interesting to know who had his finger in the pie. On the list I am Bella, but not Jorge [In the Puerto report the Guardia Civil claims that Jörg Jaksche is on the Puerto list under the codenames Bella and Jorge].

Cyclingheroes: You also spoke about professional cycling as a subculture. Can you explain what you meant with that?

Jaksche: A a professional rider you live in a world where you are not working for 30 or 35 years like everybody else. For 10 years you are living a very extreme life. Doping belongs to it, its a part of it. If the sports directors are satisfied, you don't develope a feeling of guilt. If the results are good, the sports directors are satisfied. You are not awaren that you are doing something wrong. Many people know where its all about, but its a self-contained world, in wich nobody can infiltrate. Its not compatible with the normal world.

Cyclingheroes: Did the 1998 Festina scandal change a lot?

Jaksche: I think in France it did. Ofcourse there was the Cofidis scandal but Francaise des Jeux and Bouygues Telecom are okay. These teams are primarily about clean cycling and secondarily about results. I suspect that not a lot has changed in the other countries.

Cyclingheroes: UCI president, Pat McQuaid said that the UCI is considering legal measures against you [In the interview with German weekly 'Der Spiegel' Jaksche said that a rider told him about a deal between some teams and the UCI to warn them for controls]. Does that surprise you?

Jaksche: Several people are considering legal measures. They are welcome to do so, for me its not a problem. We can discuss the whole thing in court, my pleasure!

Cyclingheroes: Do you think the UCI is happy that you made yourself available as a crown witness ?

Jaksche: Sure, I think they are very happy with it.

Cyclingheroes: A lot of teams are totally depending on their title-sponsor. In the USA Toyota-United tries to buil-up a team that is more independent from their sponsors. Toyota-United has 20.000 paying members and they sell bikes. Do you think that the dependency of single coporations intensified the doping problems and that in contrast to that new business models like the one of Toyota-United could be helpful in the fight against doping?

Jörg Jaksche: Yes, definitely. For example it is important for the teams to get a share of the tv revenues. They could save money for bad times. One should organize the teams like clubs. That would be great. It would take a good deal of the pressure of the team managers. When the contract with your main sponsor is running out, you need results. No matter how. The sport sdirectors are not happy with the current dependency.

Cyclingheroes: In the interview with 'Der Spiegel' you said you wnant to continue your career. Do you think you will get a contract after your ban is over?

Jörk Jaksche: I suppose with some teams I don't stand a chance... But there are other possibilities. I think I would get a contract.

At the end of our conversation it was important for Jörg Jaksche to say that cycling should be given another chance. Jaksche concluds: „Its important for young riders that the sponsors take their responsibility seriously now and not let cycling down.“

Related Stories:

Jaksche: "The team management knew everything"

Jaksche will cooperate with authorities

Special coverage: Puerto affair

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