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Page last updated at 15:47 GMT, Wednesday, 2 July 2008 16:47 UK

Rabobank to compensate Rasmussen

Michael Rasmussen
Rasmussen was sacked with just four days of the Tour remaining

Rabobank must pay Michael Rasmussen over half a million pounds for the way it sacked him from its 2007 Tour de France team, a judge has ruled.

The Danish rider, 34, was thrown out of the race by his Dutch team on 25 July for lying over his whereabouts when he was being sought for doping tests.

A Utrecht judge ruled Rabobank had been entitled to dismiss him from the team, but it followed the wrong procedure.

Rasmussen was banned for two years by Monaco Cycling Federation on Tuesday.

As the body who had held Rasmussen's racing licence, the Monaco Cycling Federation have suspended him from this year's Tour and the ban will end on 25 July next year.

Following his expulsion from the Tour de France by Rabobank, Rasmussen - who was wearing the yellow jersey at the time - instituted proceedings for unlawful dismissal against his former team sponsor, demanding damages of 4.4m.

606: DEBATE

Rabobank had taken the route of immediate dismissal, a procedure that can only be used on urgent grounds, such as immediately after uncovering the facts warranting such action.

In this case, Rabobank must have known about the lies for several weeks before deciding to fire the Dane.

The court found that Rasmussen was entitled to two months' salary and the bonus he would have received had he won the tour.

Rasmussen, who has denied doping, said last November he lied in the run up to the race because of personal problems.

see also
Rasmussen sacking 'was correct'
12 Nov 07 |  Cycling
Rasmussen hopeful of fresh start
23 Aug 07 |  Cycling
Rasmussen powers to mountain win
25 Jul 07 |  Cycling
Rasmussen climbs into Tour lead
15 Jul 07 |  Cycling


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