De Angeli rode for Savio’s team in 2005 but tested positive for EPO and was suspended for two years. He then suffered personal problems but decided to speak out two years ago and accused Savio of dealing doping products when giving evidence to the anti-doping investigators at the Italian Olympic Committee. This sparked the police investigation.
Gianni Savio has spoken about the Mantova investigation that has engulfed Italian cycling in the past week. The Androni Giocattoli manager was at the Paris Roubaix team presentation and believes that whatever the outcome of the investigation, Italian cycling has taken another severe hit to its already shaky integrity.
“Fortunately it’s not a question for us. We have no riders in the investigation so it’s very difficult to know what happened and what will happen,” he told Cyclingnews.
“But it’s damaging for Italian cycling,” he added. “I think that all these questions are bad for cycling.”
Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport has revealed further details of the police investigation that has engulfed the Lampre-Farnese Vini team, claiming that 16 riders and staff from the team have been formally placed under investigation for doping related offences.
A total of 35 people are under investigation by police in Mantova as part of a two-year investigation. Local media in Italy have suggested the investigation was sparked by the confession of Emanuele Sella after he tested positive for CERA in 2008.
The BMC Racing Team has announced on Friday morning that Alessandro Ballan and Mauro Santambrogio will not be racing pending the outcome of the Mantova police investigation, an anti-doping investigation currently being held in Italy.
The investigation is still big news in Italy with Gazzetta dello Sport again dedicating two pages to it on Thursday under the headline of “Un ‘inchiesta che fa tremare’ -an investigation that makes you shake with fear. One page carried an interview with the judge and the other an interview with Guido Nigrelli, the pharmacist at the centre of the investigation.
Nigrelli again denied any wrongdoing. He confirmed that former World Champion Alessandro Ballan used to do testing with him and confirmed he has been a friend of Lampre team manager Giuseppe Saronni for 30 years. He also said the Lampre-Farnese Vini team doctors ordered regular supplies of medicines from him but insisted he had not done anything illegal.
“The thing that has bothered me the most is that 60 families risk everything. If Lampre doesn’t ride the Giro, it’ll close down,” he said, raising the spectre that the future of the Italian team could be at risk.