• Cycling

'90 percent of Giro peloton doping'

ESPN staff
January 23, 2014
Danilo Di Luca tested positive for EPO in an out-of-competition test before the 2013 Giro d'Italia © Getty Images

Disgraced Italian rider Danilo Di Luca has claimed that 90 percent of the 200 riders competing in the Giro d'Italia dope, only six weeks on from receiving a life ban.

In an interview which aired on the Italia 1 television network on Wednesday, Di luca stated that the remaining 10 percent "don't care about the Giro d'Italia, they are preparing for other races and therefore not doping."

He added: "It's impossible to finish in the top 10 in the Giro d'Italia and not dope."

Di Luca, 38, has served two suspensions for doping. His first was a three-month ban in 2007, before testing positive for EPO CERA in 2009 which brought him a reduced 15-month suspension after cooperating with authorities.

Having then tested positive for EPO again ahead of last year's Giro, Di Luca was sacked by his Vini Fantini team and handed a lifetime expulsion from the sport in December.

He has not confessed to doping during his 2007 Giro victory.

Di Luca added: "The best thing would be to legalise drugs so the entire peloton is on a level playing field."

He also revealed he first learned about doping as an amateur. He said: "I was always a champion, and won often. Then, when I left the amateur ranks, riders who had raced with me a month before were a month later stronger than me."

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