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WADA chief characterizes Riccardo Riccò case as ‘tragic’

World Anti-Doping Agency president John Fahey has described as “tragic” the case of Riccardo Riccò, the Italian rider taken to hospital after a self-administered blood transfusion. Riccò fell ill during training for his Vacansoleil team last Sunday. The Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) has opened an investigation into the affair. “I’m…

World Anti-Doping Agency president John Fahey has described as “tragic” the case of Riccardo Riccò, the Italian rider taken to hospital after a self-administered blood transfusion.

Riccò fell ill during training for his Vacansoleil team last Sunday. The Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) has opened an investigation into the affair.

“I’m very disappointed, it’s tragic that someone can put himself in danger,” Fahey said in Paris on Thursday.

“It’s dreadful to see an athlete recommit,” he added, referring to Riccò’s 2008 two year suspension for doping.

CONI on Tuesday said it had launched an inquiry “on the basis of information which has appeared in the press.”

That followed a report in the Gazzetta dello Sport citing an unnamed doctor at Pavullo hospital as saying that the cyclist had indicated he had effected a self-administered transfusion from a three-week-old sample at his home which he feared had spoiled.