The ruling in the court case concerning the possible bribery of Alexandr Kolobnev by Alexander Vinokourov in the 2010 edition of Liège-Bastogne-Liège was postponed again on Tuesday. The verdict is now expected on November 5.
46-year-old Vinokourov and Kolobnev, eight years younger, are sentenced to six months' imprisonment for corruption. In addition to a prison sentence, the court in Liège also demanded a fine of 100,000 euros for Vinokourov and 50,000 euros for Kolobnev.
Vinokourov is said to have paid Kolobnev 150,000 euros in 2010 for the victory in Liège-Bastogne-Liège. The Olympic champion of 2012 reportedly offered the amount to his then Russian co-pilot, who in return would have kept his feet still.
Both riders were charged, after which Vinokourov denied having bribed Kolobnev during the Belgian classic. "It is in the Slavic soul to lend money. I have never bought a competition in my career and certainly not Liège-Bastogne-Liège in 2010", the Kazakh defended himself in court in May.
The stage of Liège-Bastogne-Liège in 2010 with Alejandro Valverde (left), Alexander Vinokourov (center) and Alexandr Kolobnev (right). (Photo: Pro Shots)
Verdict previously delayed due to excessive workload
In the first instance, the long-awaited decision in this court case would be made on 8 October, but the verdict was postponed by two weeks due to the excessive workload at the court in Liège. It is unclear why the ruling has now been moved again.
Vinokourov, who won the 2006 Vuelta a España in addition to his Olympic title, stopped his career in 2012. He has been a team manager at Astana since 2013.
Kolobnev ended his career two years ago. De Rus, who played for Rabobank and others, was second in both the 2007 and 2009 World Cup road race and won bronze in the 2008 Olympic road race.