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Cyclist Schumacher admits 'I took drugs like pasta'

BERLIN (AFP) –

German Stefan Schumacher during the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games on August 13, 2008

German Stefan Schumacher during the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games on August 13, 2008. Stefan Schumacher, who has served a two-year doping ban, has admitted regularly knocking back a cocktail of performance-enhancing drugs, likening it to eating pasta after training.

German rider Stefan Schumacher, who has served a two-year doping ban, has admitted regularly knocking back a cocktail of performance-enhancing drugs, likening it to eating pasta after training.

Schumacher was caught in October 2008 when a sample taken during that July’s Tour de France was shown to have contained CERA, a variant of the banned blood-booster erythropoeitin (EPO). He also tested positive at the Beijing Olympics.

Drug-taking, he said, was par for the course in his then-team.

“I took EPO, growth hormones and corticoids (steroids),” the former Gerolsteiner rider told Der Speigel in an interview that will be published in full on Sunday.

“I was put into a system. I’m not proud of it but that’s the way it was. Doping became an integral part of the daily routine, like a plate of pasta after training.”

The admission of his doping history was a first for Schumacher, who now races for the Danish team Christina Watches-Onfone, and comes in the wake of the confession by former Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong that he cheated his way to the top.

A number of other top cyclists, notably from the Dutch former Rabobank team, to have since admitted regular doping during their careers.

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