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I never saw Armstrong dope, says Ferrari

PARIS, France, December 15 – Lance Armstrong’s former doctor Michele Ferrari on Friday insisted he had never seen the disgraced seven-time Tour de France winner dope.

Ferrari, who like the American has been banned for life by the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), also said that he had virtually no relationship with the other cyclists who accused him of being at the centre of the scandal.

“I’ve never seen any doping practice from Lance Armstrong. I never heard something about that. He never asked me for information about doping,” Ferrari told Al Jazeera.

“My relationship with some teammates of Lance Armstrong was very, very short and occasional. It was not strict. There are six riders who accused me, but these riders, I didn’t have any relationship, any consulting with these guys.”

Ferrari believes he is the victim of a conspiracy and that his accusers were prepared to make him a scapegoat in order to ease any sanctions they might face.

“What I can say about the USADA investigation is that there is no evidence, in particular no evidence against me, but I can say also there is no smoking gun about the investigations,” said the 59-year-old Italian.

“I can suppose that some of these athletes, the federal investigation was able to demonstrate their doping practice, which they organized by themselves, and to save themselves, they agreed with the USADA investigation.”

Armstrong, 41, was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles and banned from the sport for life in October after the USADA produced evidence of widespread doping by him and his former team-mates.

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