• Cycling

Cancellara considers RadioShack future

ESPN staff
October 12, 2012

Fabian Cancellara has been left questioning his position with the RadioShack-Nissan team in the wake of allegations made against team manager John Bruyneel in the United States Anti-Doping Agency's (USADA) case file in the Lance Armstrong investigation.

The former world time trial champion, who has endured a season of highs and lows that alone might have been enough for him to consider his future with the team, believes he is owed an explanation from Bruyneel over his role in what USADA described as the most "sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping programme" in the history of sport.

But the Swiss is confident that cycling has changed, describing Armstrong as the "last of the Mohicans" of the sport's doping era.

Cancellara admitted he was yet to read the entire 1,000-page body of evidence produced against Armstrong and his alleged co-conspirators, but had found Bruyneel name-checked 129 times in the 200-page reasoned decision that summarised the decision to strip the American of his seven Tour de France titles.

"I want to know what happened," Cancellara told reporters in the Swiss Alps. "I don't know if I can work with Johan. I don't know what the future brings, either for Bruyneel, or for the team. It's not in my hands."

Unlike Armstrong, Bruyneel will defend himself against the extensive USADA evidence, which has now been passed on to the UCI. The 48-year-old managed Armstrong to all seven of his Tour de France victories and led Alberto Contador to two more yellow jerseys.

Bruyneel took over as team principal when RadioShack merged with Leopard Trek at the end of 2011, but stepped down as team manager when the allegations first broke ahead of this year's Tour. His case will be heard next month.

"I don't know how the team owner, Flavio Becca, will react," Cancellara added. "In the past two years, he's had a lot of problems with the team. He's losing money, not getting wins, and is suffering problems with his image.

"Any normal businessman would have thrown in the towel by now, but I don't think Becca will.

"There's one thing I do know for sure - Armstrong [who rode for RadioShack prior to the merger] has nothing more to do with this team.

"Lance was apparently a systematic doper. He doped on a scale that cycling has never seen before seen. He has really destroyed a lot. I hope now that Armstrong was the 'Last of the Mohicans', the last keeper of the generation.

"Today riders are once again paying the price for what went wrong six, seven years ago. That's not fair. Lance has ensured that the early years of my career are wasted years. I hope that we can finally put this period behind us. It won't happen immediately, it takes time, but it must happen."

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