COPENHAGEN (AFP) – Denmark’s four-time track cycling world champion Alex Rasmussen has been suspended by his national cycling federation for missing three out-of-competition doping controls during the past 18 months.

2011 Giro d'Italia, stage 21, Alex Rasmussen
Alex Rasmussen at this year's Giro. Photo: Graham Watson
The Danish cycling federation said in a statement that the HTC-Highroad rider has been ordered to appear before a sports tribunal of the Danish sports federation and will not be competing in next week’s world championships in Copenhagen.

“During the last 18 months (Rasmussen) missed three doping tests and received two warnings from Anti-Doping Denmark and one from the International Cycling Union,” the cycling federation statement added.

The 27-year-old — twice a world champion in scratch (2005 and 2010) and who took gold in Madison and team pursuit in the 2009 championships — has failed to translate his success on the track to road racing since he turned professional in 2009.

Rasmussen’s best results have been two stage wins in last year’s Four Days to Dunkirk race for Team Saxo Bank.

He signed a two-year contract last month to ride with Garmin-Cervelo next season after HTC-Highroad announced it was folding at the end of the year.

The Garmin team issued a release pointing out that Rasumussen’s behavior was a violation of team policy and the contract he had inked with the squad.

“Our policy is stringent,” a Garmin statement noted. “In light of this situation, Alex Rasmussen will not be joining our team.”