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Zonneveld, Thijs

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De Standaard - Belgium | 07/03/2013

Rabobank was part of the doping system

The former Dutch cyclist Michael Boogerd has admitted in an interview televised Wednesday to doping himself for over ten years. The Dutch bank Rabobank, sponsor of his team, shares the blame for the fraud, the journalist and former racing cyclist Thijs Zonneveld writes in the liberal daily De Standaard: "The bankers in their pin-striped suits should have known that doping plays a major role in cycling. ... When you demand success after success in such a world, you put the cyclists under pressure to do the same thing as their pill-swallowing, drug-injecting rivals. ... Rabobank invested millions in the team and made at least twenty times as much in return. It was a cash cow - there could be no better publicity. ... As sponsor, Rabobank was part of the system that corrupted the sport, and then it sprinted away when it saw that its image was at stake. That's all very well. But please, let's not have any whining in front of the cameras."

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