Ineos boss gives Sir Dave Brailsford ‘full support’ in wake of Richard Freeman tribunal

Ineos chairman Sir Jim Ratcliffe has given his “full support” to Sir Dave Brailsford, general manager of the Ineos Grenadiers cycling team, in the wake of the Dr Richard Freeman tribunal.

Dr Freeman worked as team doctor for British Cycling and Team Sky – as Ineos Grenadiers were formerly known – and was this month found guilty of ordering banned testosterone in 2011, “knowing or believing” it would be used to dope an athlete.

This month’s tribunal named no athlete and no evidence of doping was found, and Ratcliffe has since backed Brailsford, who has not spoken publicly since the ruling on 12 March.

“This happened what, 10 years ago?” Ratcliffe said in an interview with the Telegraph on Tuesday.

“My principal concern is where we are now and how we conduct ourselves now. I was very clear, right from the beginning, that if there was ever any sense of that going on in our team, I’d walk away from it immediately.

Read more:

  • A lost generation of future footballers
  • Lewis Hamilton ‘being used’ by Black Lives Matter, claims Bernie Ecclestone
  • Rio Ferdinand identifies Frank Lampard’s key mistake that led to Chelsea sacking
  • ‘It’s nice that it’s just the norm for us’: Life in the most gender equal sport on the planet

“And nothing’s changed in that regard. In my opinion, you haven’t accomplished anything if you’ve done it by cheating. There’s no honour in that.”

Independent Rugby Newsletter

Live Rugby union coverage direct to your inbox every week

Read our privacy notice

Independent Rugby Newsletter

Live Rugby union coverage direct to your inbox every week

Read our privacy notice

Ratcliffe admitted that he had not spoken with Brailsford since the ruling, but said: “We’ve all got antenna haven’t we?

“And your antenna starts pinging if you’re uncomfortable about something. My antenna doesn’t start pinging away when I’m chatting today to Dave. Quite the opposite.

“I also know the riders. I know Chris Froome, I know Egan [Bernal] and Geraint [Thomas]. I’d be astonished if there’s any of that going on.

“I like Dave. I think he’s a very straightforward northerner. I think he’s accomplished a lot. A bit like Toto [Wolff] has with Mercedes F1. There’s no accident that these guys are successful. When I look at how meticulous Dave is, the marginal gains stuff isn’t fiction. He is a workaholic.

“I mean, he is present at the [races] for 220 days a year in his caravan, you know? I mean, that’s utter dedication. To the detriment of his own health and family life. So that’s the side of Dave I see.

“He has my full support. Unless something came up that I was shocked by, he will continue to have my full support.

“It comes back to this debate we had when we first took over. Cycling has a mixed history, a reputation. But assuming it’s now clean as a sport, you shouldn’t consign it to the dustbin, should you? Like athletics, or football, it’s a fantastic sport and that’s why, ultimately, we decided to support it.”

Source: Read Full Article