Theo de Rooy, director of the Rabobank cycling team, announced Friday that he is quitting following the Tour de France which saw Danish cyclist Michael Rasmussen, wearing the leader’s yellow jersey, sacked in a doping row July 25.
“This parting is very difficult for me. The team is my passion but I saw no other option,” De Rooy told the ANP news agency.
According to the Rabobank team website, Rabobank understands and respects this decision.
Since the foundation of the Rabobank Cycling Plan in October 1995, de Rooy has been involved in the Rabobank Cycling Teams. In 2004 he exchanged his role as a team leader in the professional team for a position as general director of the Rabobank Cycling Teams.
Under the responsibility of de Rooy, over the span of 12 years Rabobank has won 6 World titles, 81 national championships, 10 World Cup Classics and 27 stages in the three grand tours. His contribution to a total number of 1738 victories was a crucial one.
During the Tour, De Rooy kicked race leader Rasmussen off the team for allegedly lying about his whereabouts before the race to evade drug testers. On Friday the team’s sponsor Dutch bank Rabobank announced it was starting an investigation into the events that led to the sacking of Rasmussen.
The probe is expected to be concluded in October.
© AFP 2007