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Susan Egelstaff column: Cycling still a long way off receiving clean bill of health

After the scandal-packed year that road cycling went through last year, 2013, apparently, is a new dawn for the sport.

The dopers have either confessed or have been caught, and there is the suggestion that this year marks the beginning of a new era for the sport.

The Tour Down Under, which began on Sunday, is the first race of note of 2013, and, coincidentally, is inextricably linked with the most prominent person in the shocking doping revelations that have dominated cycling over the past 12 months: Lance Armstrong. It was in this race in which he made his comeback in 2009 – he retired for the first time in 2005 after seven consecutive Tour de France victories – and it was also in this race that he made his final inter-national appearance, in 2011.

So, considering the list of riders, past and present, who have admitted taking drugs, and in the aftermath of Armstrong's confession to Oprah Winfrey that he doped throughout his career, there are claims that cycling is now a clean sport.

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