Vuelta champion Horner to release biological passport data
Horner became the oldest rider (41) to win a grand tour when he triumphed at the Vuelta a Espana
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American Chris Horner (RadioShack-Leopard) will release his biological passport data today in an effort to curb the cynicism that’s bloomed around his remarkable Vuelta a Espana win — a win he called “perfect and beautiful.”
“I’m gong to release all my biological passport, from 2008, the inception of the biological passport. I don’t know how many guys have done that in the past, but I’m going to release all of mine,” Horner told VeloNews Tuesday night. “I think it’s just necessary. Clearly there are a lot of people out there that think the result wasn’t done clean at the Vuelta. I think this will clear up any matter at all, and they’ll have no leg to stand on from this point on.”
Horner won the Vuelta by 37 seconds over Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) and made history as the oldest man to win a grand tour, at 41 years old. It was an unbelievably exciting race, but some found it, simply, unbelievable. The win came at the upper reaches of what most thought was possible — the oldest grand tour winner ever? — at a time when the sport is still reeling from last fall’s Lance Armstrong revelations.
Skepticism was rife, and the fact that drug testers got confused the morning after he won and went to the wrong hotel to test the champion came across the news wires as a missed test for Horner, only setting off more alarm bells. A hotel mix-up was blamed and the United States Anti-Doping Agency cleared him of any wrongdoing.
“I think — clearly what happened after the Vuelta made it difficult for people to believe in the result itself,” he said.
Asked if he was upset with the rampant skepticism, Horner was measured.
“I wasn’t frustrated. You understand that the questions are going to come from the press. Clearly the next morning I was not happy with how it was handled,” he said.
Horner was expected to publish the passport data — 39 tests in total — Wednesday morning on his website, chrishornerracing.com.
“That’s the best I can do,” he said. “Clearly, that will show everyone and that will satisfy all the cynics and critics and press. Really, more than anything, I want to make sure everybody understands the Vuelta, and what a beautiful race they were watching.”
Asked if he would still be the first American Vuelta champion years from now, Horner said yes. “I am 100 percent confident,” he said.