Shane Sutton weighing up whether to return to medical tribunal after angry exit

Shane Sutton is considering whether to return to give evidence to a medical tribunal in Manchester on Thursday after storming out of the proceedings on Tuesday.

The former head coach of British Cycling and Team Sky vehemently denied accusations of doping, lying and bullying put by the QC representing Dr Richard Freeman, the former medic of the same organisations attempting to prove he is fit to continue to practise medicine.

Freeman has already admitted a series of charges against him, including ordering 30 sachets of Testogel to British Cycling headquarters in 2011. Freeman claims the banned product was ordered for Sutton to treat an erectile dysfunction.

Dr Richard Freeman is the former British Cycling and Team Sky medic
Dr Richard Freeman is the former British Cycling and Team Sky medic

Sutton said he got himself “into an emotional state” as he faced the questioning of Mary O’Rourke, likened by Simon Jackson, the QC for the General Medical Council, as “machine-gun accusations”.

After being questioned by O’Rourke two hours, Sutton decided he had had enough.

In a furious outburst, he told the tribunal: “I’ve spent two days waiting to come up here, I’ve told the truth, I’ve answered your questions, taken your bullying, and my children have taken your gutter tactics in the press.

“She (O’Rourke) has accused me, but I’ve looked the panel in the eye, I’m not lying. I’m going to leave the hearing now. I don’t need to be dragged through this s**t fight she is dragging me through personally.

“I’m going to go back to my little hole in Spain, enjoy my retirement and sleep at night knowing full well I didn’t order any patches (of Testogel).”

It is the GMC’s case that Freeman obtained the Testogel in the knowledge, or belief, that it was to be given to an athlete to enhance performance.

On several occasions during the hearing, Sutton denied the Testogel was for his personal use.

At one stage, he stated: “If I had ordered it, I would have no problem telling you it was for me.

“You’re telling me I can’t get a hard on in the press. My wife wants to testify and tell you you’re a bloody liar. It wasn’t for me and I never ordered it.”

Shane Sutton left his role at British Cycling in 2016
Shane Sutton left his role at British Cycling in 2016

During his outburst before departing, Sutton also turned on Freeman, who is spending the hearing screened off from the public gallery for what have been determined as health reasons.

Sutton said: “The person lying to you is behind the screen. Hopefully one day he will come clean.”

Although declaring Freeman to be “a good bloke, a good friend”, he said that due to “a messy divorce” the doctor “had turned up to work drunk on several occasions” and that he had covered for him.

Sutton said O’Rourke was “defending someone (Freeman) who has admitted to telling a million lies to you and the rest of the world, but can’t come out and tell the truth and is hiding behind a screen, which is spineless.

“Richard, you’re a spineless individual!”

The hearing is set to continue on Thursday.