Jan Ullrich: The black era of cycling is over
Jul 26 2017 04:39 pm CET

Jan Ullrich: The black era of cycling is over
Jan Ullrich: The black era of cycling is over
Photo of Jan Ullrich by Heidas - License: Cc-by-sa 3.0

Jan Ullrich, the only German winner of the Tour de France, believes that mass doping is a thing of the past.

The ex-rider, who was involved in the 'Operacion Puerto' doping scheme, doesn't think professional riders are using substances to enhance their performances. "The black era of cycling is over," he said to German magazine Sport Bild.

"I hope cyclists nowadays have learned from our mistakes. I want to believe that and I want to believe in the innocence of the riders."

Ullrich stated that he watched this Tour with particular enthusiasm because of Marcel Kittel's success. "It is very fortunate for German cycling to have someone like Kittel, who unfortunately is in a Belgian team instead of a German one. Anyway, he has awakened a new enthusiasm for cycling in Germany," he commented.

Despite Kittel's performance, the former rider doesn't believe his country is close to taking another victory at the French Grand Tour. "The Tour de France has existed since 1903 and I am the only German that has won it.

"That shows how hard it is. I was, as they say, a talent of the century. But there is still plenty to do. You need the right training, the right coach and the right sponsors. Unfortunately, right now I don't see anyone who could fight for the overall win."
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