Bernard Hinault has launched a stinging attack on Chris Froome, claiming he should never have been on the Giro d’Italia start line given his ongoing anti-doping battle.
“He returned a positive test at the Vuelta and afterwards his B-sample proved positive,” Hinault told Het Laatste Nieuws.
Froome returned an adverse analytical finding for twice the permitted level of salbutamol at last year’s Vuelta, which he won, making him the first man since Hinault in 1978 to win that race and the Tour de France in the same year.
“He should never have been allowed to start in the Giro. Why do we need to wait so long for a verdict?
“Those two Italians who had the same thing were suspended much faster,” he added of Alessandro Petachi and Diego Ulissi. “Why does Froome get so much time to find an explanation? Is it because Team Sky has so much money?
“This is all very sad. Froome isn’t part of the legend of the sport. What image does he give cycling?
“He may also start the Tour (in July). It’s a real scandal, this has to stop.”