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Speaking to Cyclism’Actu, the Cofidis star said he believes ketones, a dietary supplement that some say provides such a performance boost they should be on the banned list, need to be addressed by anti-doping authorities.
“Ketones? Obviously, I’m in favor of banning them,” he told Cyclism’Actu. “I don’t think, and I hope, that there is not heavy doping in cycling right now, but the big question is more about these gray areas because ketones are not something that is banned today.”
Ketones, which can be taken in liquid or powder form, are widely used across the elite pro peloton. The product is said to help with recovery as well as performance, and some reports suggest more than half of the WorldTour teams are using them to some degree.
Ketones are not on the UCI or WADA banned list.
The MPCC (Movement for Credible Cycling) has come out against them, and its members have vowed not to use them.
French riders Romain Bardet and Arnaud Démare have both recently expressed their opinions that ketones should be banned.
“The question is, should they be [banned]? Personally, I do not take it and my team is part of the MPCC which prohibits its use,” Martin told the website. “Moreover, even before the MPCC took its position, I decided not to take any. So I am obviously in favor of banning them for reasons of fairness. Afterward, it’s up to the UCI to take a position. I don’t have all the evidence or all the scientific data on the effectiveness or real danger of ketones.”
Ketones revive debate of peloton at ‘two speeds’
The 28-year-old Martin has emerged as one of the top French riders in the peloton and has punched into the t0p-10 in both the Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana in 2021.
The rise of the use of ketones has inevitably revived the conversation around doping’s grey areas and the idea of a “two-speed” peloton.
Martin, however, insisted that he only focuses on his personal performances, and refuses to raise doubts about his opponents despite many of them using ketones.
“These questions of doping or two-speed cycling come up often in conversations,” he told Cyclism’Actu. “For myself, I refuse to think about it. Already there is nothing I can do about it, and then I have nothing that allows me to say anything. Personally, I just want to focus on my job and what I’m doing.
“There is one important thing in life, and that is the presumption of innocence,” he said. “I assume that until nothing is proven about someone, I am not going to judge or attack them. So I focus on myself, I don’t pass judgment, and I try to do my best.”
International bodies still have not made any decision on ketone use.
— MPCC (@MPCC_Cycling) June 4, 2021