Making a rare public appearance at the opening of his brother’s bike shop in Berlin on Friday, former pro cyclist and 1997 Tour de France winner Jan Ullrich announced his intention to write a book.
The German reportedly wants to tell his side of the story after the revelations from the Operación Puerto doping investigation forced a premature end to his cycling career and virtual disappearance from the sport.
“I will write a book, to put forth my view of things, but first I have to gather energy for it,” Ullrich told German press agency dpa. “Cycling will clean itself,” he added. “The sponsors go away, the money goes away. Then people will ride for the love of it.”
Now 34 years old, Ullrich revealed that he only rides his bike “out of passion”. He has withdrawn from the public eye almost entirely since announcing his retirement in February 2007, a decision he described as “like shooting a hole in my heart”. The German said he may watch this year’s race on television, but only sporadically.
“That brings back too many memories,” he said. “Of course it is painful.”