UK Anti-Doping to reopen proceedings against Richard Freeman after failed appeal

UK Anti-Doping is to reopen proceedings against former Team Sky and British Cycling doctor Richard Freeman after he failed in his appeal against being struck off the medical register.

In April 2021, a Medical Practitioners Tribunal ruled that Freeman had ordered 30 sachets of a banned testosterone product to the National Cycling Centre, “knowing or believing” it was to be administered to an unnamed athlete in order to improve their performance.

Freeman, who admitted ordering Testogel but claimed it was to treat former British Cycling technical director Shane Sutton for erective disfunction, appealed, arguing that Sutton – who had stormed out of the hearing in Manchester – was not a credible witness. That appeal was rejected at the High Court on Monday.

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

In a 38-page judgment, Mr Justice Fordham said: “In my judgment, there is nothing within the tribunal’s approach, reasoning or conclusions…which was wrong. The appeal is dismissed; and the Appellant is to pay the respondent’s costs summarily assessed in the sum claimed as £23,000.”

A statement from Freeman’s legal team read: “JMW Solicitors is disappointed by the judgment of the High Court rejecting Dr Richard Freeman’s appeal against the decision taken by the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service that his name be removed from the medical register.”

Freeman, 63, faces two charges from UK Anti-Doping – one for possession of a prohibited substance and another for tampering or attempted tampering with any part of doping control.

Those proceedings were halted after he launched his appeal but UKAD will now move forward with the case.

Olympics – Team GB Kitting Out – The NEC
Richard Freeman was British Cycling’s doctor going into the 2016 Olympics (Tim Goode/PA)

A statement said: “UKAD’s case before the independent National Anti-Doping Panel (NADP) was paused in June 2021 until the conclusion of the High Court appeal.

“Following confirmation of the outcome of the High Court appeal today, UKAD will be contacting the NADP and Dr Freeman’s representatives with a view to resuming its proceedings against him.

“Dr Freeman is charged with two anti-doping rule violations, and remains provisionally suspended by UKAD.”

Freeman was in charge of riders’ medical care from 2009 to 2017, an extraordinary period of success for British Cycling highlighted by dominance at both the 2012 and 2016 Olympics Games.