The Austrian newspaper Kurier reported today that an independent commission announced the ban of Austrian Pro and current XTERRA World Champion Michael Weiss for 2 years until November 2013.
Just a few months after winning Ironman St. George, Austria's anti doping agency NADA had cleared Weiss in September of 2010 in an ongoing doping investigation, but according to the Kurier an independent commission in Austria announced a reversal of that judgment today. The case had actually been hanging over the head of Michael Weiss since 2005.
Statements by former road Pro Bernhard Kohl had led to the Michael Weiss investigation about visits to the blood plasma laboratory Humanplasma in Vienna in 2005, but according to the Kurier, even though the commission had little doubts about Weiss having been in that blood plasma lab, when Kohl did not repeat those accusations against Weiss, the case had to be dropped.
The Austrian cycling federation who then governed him as a professional mountain biker and NADA appealed that dismissal and a 5 person jury led by head judge Peter Döller reviewed the case and finally announced the ban in Austria tonight.
Weiss still has the opportunity to take his case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne, Switzerland if he has any intentions to compete in the next 2 years.
"This is not from anything that is remotely recent. The allegation dates back to 2005, as I was a professional mountain biker, and is based solely on one individual’s verbal accusation. NADA is a politically motivated agency and this development is in complete disagreement with the ruling by the Austrian State's attorney which dismissed the case weeks ago, as there was no evidentiary proof," said Weiss to slowtwitch when asked about the ban. "All of my results in triathlon will remain standing, as the case has no basis in my career as a triathlete."
How this ban will affect the triathlon career of Michael Weiss is not certain at this time. We will however follow up regarding this situation.
Original article: Kurier.at