Danes search Bahrain Victorious riders’ hotel ahead of Tour

Bahrain’s Victorious Tour de France team was raided by police for the second time this week on Thursday, a day before the tour kicks off in Denmark. The team confirmed in a statement that the hotel rooms and vehicles of the runners and staff in the suburbs of Copenhagen were searched by Danish officers, and they “cooperated fully with all officers’ requests, and the search was completed in two hours”. No items were seized from the team.

Danish police acted at the request of French prosecutors, Copenhagen police spokesman Dannie Rise said in a statement, referring further questions to French police. Hotel manager Jeroen Bishop said the Danish Media Police arrived shortly before 6 a.m. local time (0400 GMT), there were uniformed and plainclothes officers, and that ” everything happened quietly and calmly”.

Bahrain Victorious performance manager Vladimir Miholjevic later told a press conference that no further information was available at this time. “We would like to have more details about the investigation, just to be able to understand such an action,” Miholjevic said. “Right now the team is fully focused on the big race ahead of us and achieving our sporting goals.”

On Monday, Bahrain Victorious riders and staff were raided by police ahead of their departure for the Tour de France. The team said it believed the timing of the searches “was intended to intentionally damage the reputation of the team”.

Jack Haig and Damiano Caruso have been selected to direct Bahrain Victorious. The squad also includes Jan Tratnik, Kamil Gradek, Fred Wright and Luis Leon Sanchez, as well as 2021 stage winners Matej Mohorič and Dylan Teuns.

The team was also raided by French police during last year’s Tour as part of an anti-doping investigation. It did nothing. The Tour begins in Copenhagen on Friday with an individual time trial and two other stages in Denmark, including the crossing of the Great Belt Bridge which connects the island of Zealand where Copenhagen is located and the central island of Funen. The stage could potentially be very windy.

Lance B. Holton