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Rasmussen retreats on Rabobank 2007 Tour statements

Michael Rasmussen has retreated from explosive comments he made to Danish television that he suggested that “100 percent” of Rabobank’s 2007 Tour de France squad was doped.

Rasmussen’s claims were met with incredulity from three-time world champion Óscar Freire, who challenged the veracity of the Dane’s statements, threatening to sue.

Freire, who retired last year, had never been linked to a doping scandal throughout his career. On Monday, he challenged Rasmussen to publicly apologize. Rasmussen did just that, telling Spain’s EFE wire service he never saw anything suspicious with Freire.

“I never saw Freire doping. And not (Juan Antonio) Flecha, either,” Rasmussen said. “It was a mistake to say that all the Rabobank riders took doping products. I don’t mention either of them in my book. I regret the speculation and accusations that resulted in the Spanish media.”

Rasmussen made his claims in an interview with Danish television to promote a new book, Yellow Fever.