Cycling star accused of race-fixing

Team Astana's Alexander Vinokourov (Reuters / Vincent West)
Swiss L’Illustre magazine claims famous Kazakh cyclist Aleksandr Vinokourov bribed his Russian opponent Aleksandr Kolobnev in order to win last year’s Liege-Bastogne-Liege race.

The claims are based on the revelation that the cyclists contacted each other many times during the race. It later emerged that the duo had discussed transferring 100,000 euros to Kolobnev.

Earlier this month Vinokurov told the Interfax news agency that his email account had been hacked.

Meanwhile, commenting on the accusations carried by the Swiss magazine, Vinokourov stressed that never in his career had he diverged from sporting principles. He also made it clear that the money transferred was in a fact a loan he had granted to his friend.

“This is my private life, I’m not at a police interrogation,” he said.

“These accusations are nonsense, just another attempt to trample my reputation,” the 2006 Vuelta winner and Olympic silver medalist added.

Vinokourov has reportedly filed a lawsuit against the Swiss magazine.

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