Zabel comes clean on doping in resignation
Former cyclist Erik Zabel has resigned from the Professional Cycling Council after admitting to "many years" of doping, the International Cycling Union has confirmed.
The 43-year-old German has revealed how he had used illegal methods and banned substances between 1996 and 2003 before retiring in 2008.
Zabel, who won 12 stages of the Tour de France and eight stages of the Vuelta a Espana, confessed to using both EPO and the steroid hormone cortisone; he yesterday contacted UCI president Pat McQuaid to offer his resignation.
A UCI statement read: "Erik Zabel said that cycling is now in a cleaner era, however he is no longer the right person to be a part of the Council."
"It was doping for many years," Zabel said. "I never had a structured doping plan, never had any experts around me. I never saw myself as a super doper.
"When you take everything together – EPO, cortisone and even blood doping, then it's quite a lot."