Ullrich deserves 2nd chance, says Kittel

Marcel Kittel (Getty)
Marcel Kittel (Getty)

Dusseldorf - German sprinter Marcel Kittel on Thursday joined disgraced former cyclist Lance Armstrong in blasting Tour de France organisers over their Jan Ullrich snub.

Ullrich is the only German to have won the Tour, back in 1997, although he later admitted to having doped during his career.

On Wednesday, Armstrong, who was stripped of his seven Tour titles for doping, blasted organisers ASO for double standards for "rolling out the red carpet" for other known dopers yet not inviting Ullrich to Saturday's start in Dusseldorf, Germany.

"From a human point of view it's a great shame for Jan Ullrich," said Kittel, a winner of nine Tour stages.

"I can imagine that it's incredibly difficult for him. Everyone deserves a second chance."

Ullrich, who also won Olympic gold in Sydney in 2000, long denied doping but was excluded from the 2006 Tour de France over his links to the Operation Puerto drug scandal and doping doctor Eufemiano Fuentes.

He finally came clean in 2013 about his sordid past but by then it was too late, he had become a pariah in German cycling, particularly amongst the media.

Last month he resigned as sports director of a professional race in Cologne due to negative media reaction, just three days after his appointment.

loading... Live
England 0
Pakistan 126/5 (45.4 ov)
Voting Booth
What is your favourite sport to watch on TV?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
44% - 5916 votes
11% - 1469 votes
19% - 2523 votes
2% - 309 votes
1% - 123 votes
2% - 304 votes
5% - 659 votes
8% - 1097 votes
3% - 419 votes
Water sports
1% - 120 votes
American sports
1% - 129 votes
3% - 385 votes