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Menchov denies blood doping accusations

SAINT VAILLON, France (VN) — Denis Menchov (Katusha) denied allegations leveled by ex-Rabobank teammate Michael Rasmussen on Thursday that he underwent banned blood transfusions at an Austrian blood bank.

Rasmussen is testifying this week in a Dutch courthouse in a long-running spat over money with his ex-Rabobank team for damages associated with his forced departure while leading the 2007 Tour de France.

As part of that hearing, the Danish rider also testified that he shared blood doping practices with Menchov, who was then a Rabobank teammate.

Racing this week at Paris-Nice, Menchov categorically denied the allegations.

“No, it’s not true,” he said when asked Wednesday if he blood doped. “I don’t have any comments about doping.”

When a Dutch journalist pressed, Menchov also denied knowing alleged doping ringleader Stefan Matschiner, the agent of former Gerolsteiner rider Bernhard Kohl who organized blood-doping practices.

“I do not know him,” Menchov said. “If you want to talk about sport, I will answer your questions. Otherwise I have no comment.”