Climbing machine: Contador attacks the Col du Mansse during this year's Tour de France Christophe Ena/AP/Press Association Images
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Contador hearing postponed until November

In response to a request for additional time from the World Anti-Doping Agency, Alberto Contador’s hearing at the Court of Arbitartion for Sport has been postponed, most likely until November.

ADDING A FURTHER complication to an already convoluted chain of events, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (Cas) has today announced that its hearing into Alberto Contador’s positive drugs test will be delayed for at least two months.

Scheduled to take place over the first, second and third of August, the hearing was to evaluate the Spanish Cycling Federation’s decision to pardon Contador of all suspicion in the matter of his failed test for clenbuterol during last year’s Tour de France.

Today’s delay, the second such postponement since the case was sent to Cas, comes at the request of the World Anti-Doping Agency, with whom the International Cycling Union is coordinating its appeal. A statement on Cas’ website reads:

“Such request was formulated by WADA with the unanimous agreement of the three other parties.

“As a consequence of the parties’ request, the hearing which was scheduled for 1, 2 and 3 August 2011 is cancelled and will be rescheduled for new dates, probably in November 2011.”

The delay will allow WADA and the UCI to finalise the compilation of their evidence against the Spaniard:

“The second round of written submissions will allow the parties to complete their evidence and arguments relating to some specific scientific issues.”

While Contador’s withdrawal from this season’s Vuelta makes the delay itself largely immaterial from an administrative perspective, today’s news will further dismay those anxious to see top-tier cycling uncontaminated by controversy.