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Sir Dave Brailsford has questions to answer at Team Sky media day in Majorca

Sir Dave Brailsford has questions to answer at Team Sky media day in Majorca
By PA Sport

09/01/2017 at 18:11Updated 09/01/2017 at 18:22

Embattled Team Sky principal Sir Dave Brailsford is scheduled to face a media interrogation in Majorca on Tuesday.

Embattled Team Sky principal Sir Dave Brailsford is scheduled to face a media interrogation in Majorca on Tuesday.

After the politicians come the journalists. Brailsford was called before parliament at the Culture, Media and Sport (CMS) select committee on December 19, with his appearance prompting further questions.

The evidence provided by Brailsford and other leading figures in British cycling was last Saturday described as "extraordinary" and "very disappointing" by UK Anti-Doping chairman David Kenworthy.

Now Brailsford will continue to fight for his own and his team's reputation - and possibly future - under media scrutiny.

Questions about the UKAD investigation into a package delivered to Team Sky almost six years ago, revealed in the Daily Mail last October, and the British squad's use of therapeutic use exemptions for Sir Bradley Wiggins are set to dominate.

Team Sky have always denied "wrongdoing" and insist no anti-doping rule violation has taken place.

Damian Collins MP, the select committee chairman, says questions remain and witnesses may be recalled, along with new ones.

Further evidence is now likely to wait until the conclusion of the UKAD investigation.

UKAD usually only announces a conclusion to an investigation if an anti-doping rule violation has taken place. But Team Sky, British Cycling and Wiggins will want a public declaration if no wrongdoing is found.

The annual media day at the Vanity Hotel in Port d'Alcudia, on Majorca's more secluded northern coast, has previously been a fun affair, with media rides mixed with presentations about Team Sky's bid to dominate the sport.

But the team seeking a fifth Tour de France title in six editions this summer - and a fourth for Chris Froome, who on Friday stopped short of endorsing Brailsford at a separate media day in Monaco - have greater concerns than simply winning.

Brailsford admitted considering his position before, after acknowledging mistakes in hiring Belgian doctor Geert Leinders in 2011 and 2012.

Team Sky say they had no concerns over Leinders' work during his time with the squad, but the doctor has since been banned for life following revelations of doping during his time at Dutch squad Rabobank.

Brailsford also restated Team Sky's zero-tolerance policy to doping in 2012, leading to a number of departures.

The current turmoil, though, entering Team Sky's eighth season, is the most challenging since the squad's inception in 2009.

Brailsford told parliament he was informed by Dr Richard Freeman that the package delivered to Team Sky and Wiggins at the conclusion of the 2011 Criterium du Dauphine contained fluimucil, an over the counter decongestant when administered by a nebuliser.

Collins and UKAD say they are yet to see documentary evidence to support Team Sky's answer.

Shane Sutton, Wiggins' long-time mentor and formerly Brailsford's right-hand man at British Cycling, told the select committee that Freeman had performed a medical treatment on Wiggins. He spoke before Brailsford disclosed what he had been told to be the contents of the package.

Fluimucil has previously been used by injection to aid recovery, with Froome admitting in a 2014 interview that he received it in this way six years earlier.

But in May 2011 the UCI, cycling's world governing body, introduced a no needles policy in competition.

An injection of fluimucil on any race day would be an anti-doping rule violation; so too would the use of triamcinolone without a TUE.

Brailsford told parliament that Wiggins' use of fluimucil in June 2011 was via a nebuliser.

Wiggins has been under scrutiny since Russian hackers revealed he received TUEs prior to the 2011 and 2012 Tours de France, plus the 2013 Giro d'Italia for the anti-inflammatory drug triamcinolone. The 36-year-old became the first British winner of the Tour in 2012.

The injections of triamcinolone - a substance which has a history of abuse in cycling - were authorised by the UCI and the British authorities and there is no suggestion that Wiggins, Team Sky or British Cycling have broken any rules.

Wiggins and Brailsford have insisted the TUEs were medically necessary to deal with a pollen allergy that aggravates the former's long-standing asthma condition.

Wiggins, Britain's most decorated Olympian with five gold and eight medals in all, retired last month. He is to take part in winter sports reality TV show 'The Jump'.

It was announced on Monday that Wiggins will now be managed by M&C SaatchiMerlin, leaving the XIX Entertainment stable which manages David Beckham.

And he has signed a three-year partnership deal with car make Skoda.

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