Sky told to give answers about drug

Team Sky's leader Chris Froome (in yellow) said that at his previous team, Barloworld, he had been given injections of Fluimucil to assist recovery.
Team Sky's leader Chris Froome (in yellow) said that at his previous team, Barloworld, he had been given injections of Fluimucil to assist recovery.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

LONDON • Damian Collins MP, the head of the British House of Commons culture, media and sport committee, has called upon Team Sky to give more detailed information about their use of Fluimucil.

The antioxidant and mucolytic is said to have been in the package delivered to the cycling team's then-doctor Richard Freeman at the Criterium du Dauphine in 2011.

Following a Guardian investigation last week into the uses of Fluimucil, which showed it had been used by injection to aid recovery in the period before the UCI banned the use of needles in cycling in May 2011, Collins told the Observer: "Team Sky need to set out how they used Fluimucil, how often and for what purposes. British Cycling should also be in a position to state whether this was a drug they routinely kept in their stores and was it regularly supplied to Team Sky."

Sky's leader Chris Froome, a three-time winner of the Tour de France, confirmed that at his previous team, Barloworld, he had been given injections of Fluimucil to assist recovery, something that was within the rules as it was before the needle ban.

His team doctor at the squad added that the injections of Fluimucil were small and given to riders because of its antioxidant properties.

When he gave evidence to the committee of MPs on Dec 19, Team Sky principal Dave Brailsford said that he understood Fluimucil was administered by a nebuliser, which turns the preparation into an airborne solution that can be inhaled in order to loosen up mucus within the lungs when a rider has breathing issues.

The pressure on Brailsford was turned up a notch on Saturday when David Kenworthy, the outgoing head of UK Anti-Doping (Ukad), told the BBC that his body's investigation had yet to be given clear information about what was in the package.

A statement from Team Sky said: "As we have said from the start, we are confident that there has been no wrongdoing.

"We are continuing to cooperate fully with Ukad and we look forward to the conclusion of the investigation."

Collins has said that his committee will wait until the investigation is complete before calling further witnesses, who could include Freeman and the coach who transported the package, Simon Cope.

On Saturday, the MP repeated his concern that there may be no paper trail to confirm what was being carried.

"One question will remain until it can be determined beyond doubt what was in the package," he said.

"That is: How can you be certain that the cycling team are living up to their own professed high standards, if there are no written records available to the management of what the team doctor is administering to the cyclists?"

THE GUARDIAN

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 09, 2017, with the headline 'Sky told to give answers about drug'. Print Edition | Subscribe