Former British Cycling Doctor to Appeal Against Testosterone Doping Ruling

Eleanor Crooks

April 23, 2021

Former Team Sky and British Cycling doctor Richard Freeman has launched an appeal after being found guilty of ordering testosterone for doping purposes.

A Medical Practitioners Tribunal reached that verdict at the end of a long-running hearing in Manchester last month and determined that Freeman should be struck off the medical register.


New Legal Team

Freeman's new legal team confirmed an appeal had been lodged with the High Court on Thursday, although the hearing is not expected to take place until November or December.

The new team is being led by Graham Small at JMW Solicitors, who said: "Mr Freeman is innocent of wrongdoing and we are confident that the truth will ultimately be recognised by the UK justice system."

Freeman admitted 18 of 22 charges relating to the ordering of Testogel to British Cycling headquarters in 2011 as well as poor record-keeping and inappropriate treatment of non-riders.

The three charges he denied centred around the Testogel but the tribunal did not believe him, concluding: "Bearing in mind the breadth of Dr Freeman's dishonesty and the number of people he had pulled into it, the Tribunal found his conduct incapable of innocent explanation.

"It was clear that, on the balance of probabilities, the inference could properly be drawn that, when Dr Freeman placed the order and obtained the Testogel, he knew or believed it was to be administered to an athlete to improve their athletic performance."

Erectile Dysfunction

Freeman claimed the Testogel was ordered to treat former performance director Shane Sutton's erectile dysfunction, which the Australian vociferously denied before storming out during a tumultuous day of evidence in 2019.

The appeal is likely to focus on Shane Sutton's evidence and the tribunal's conclusion that he was a credible and consistent witness.

Freeman's QC, Mary O'Rourke, said following the verdict: "For you to describe Shane Sutton in the terms you do is really stunning.

"You described him as intemperate but neglected to deal with the fact that he threatened Dr Freeman at least three times in this room and threatened me once. If that didn't say all that you needed to know, what did?"

Freeman, who said he "vehemently" disagreed with the tribunal's determination, had been involved in delivering coronavirus vaccines but the panel ruled he should be suspended immediately pending the result of any appeal.

Freeman is also facing two UK Anti-Doping charges regarding the ordering of the testosterone.

This article contains information from PA Media.


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