Ullrich aiming for world title; Mapei boots Bartoli; UCI appeals Hamburger ban

Ullrich looks for road race world title

German cycling star and 2001 Tour de France runner-up Jan Ullrich said in an interview Monday he hoped to add the road race world championship title next month in Portugal to the Olympic gold he won in the event last year in Sydney.

"I will fully concentrate on the road race, although I could also medal in the time trial. But I have already won the time trial world title. The road race gold is still missing in my collection," Ullrich told Kicker sports magazine.

The 1997 Tour de France winner Ullrich said the Lisbon road race course of Oct. 14 is "very tough because of the large number of climbs."

But he said he was in good training for the event after having to sit a week recently due to illness. Ullrich is competing in some events in Germany as well but gave the current Tour of Spain a miss because it didn't fit his schedule.

Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa)

Bartoli shown the door by Mapei

Italian cycling team Mapei sacked former world No. 1 Michele Bartoli on Monday, citing a breakdown in trust between the two parties.

"It would be advisable for Bartoli to negotiate with his future team right now," team boss Giorgio Squinzi said in a statement faxed to AFP.

The parting of the ways comes at a time when cycling's rumour mill was suggesting Bartoli was planning to join the Fassa Bortolo outfit.

"Michele Bartoli can race for who he wants to, that includes Fassa Bortolo," Squinzi said.

Squinzi added that there had been a total breakdown in trust on both personal and professional levels with the 30-year-old former team leader, who started the season in good form, winning the Het Volk Classic.

Mapei team manager Alvaro Crespi added: "The relations with Michele Bartoli have never been easy."

Crespi said Bartoli, from Pisa, had refused to ride in several races and had recently excused himself from duty with laryngitis, certified by a doctor who was not authorized by the team.

Mapei also announced that they had signed France's Olympic mountain bike world champion Miguel Martinez on a three-year contract. Martinez will switch to road-racing with his new team.

Agence France Presse

World cycling body says it will appeal doping acquittal of Danish rider

LAUSANNE, Switzerland The world cycling body said Monday it would appeal the Danish Doping Board's acquittal of cyclist Bo Hamburger of charges that he had used the banned endurance-building drug EPO.

The Sports Confederation of Denmark's three-member doping panel said that while Hamburger's A-sample and one of the B-samples were positive, the second B-sample was negative and that gave cause for reasonable doubt.

The decision was opposed by the Danish Cycling Union, which imposed a life ban on Hamburger despite his acquittal. UCI's decision to take the case to the arbitration court followed a request from the Danish union.

Hamburger was the first rider to test positive for EPO under a new system introduced by UCI in April.

The Associated Press

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