Potential drugs cheats at the 2009 Tour de France will face the biggest anti-doping army ever seen at a major sports event next month, UCI president Pat McQuaid warned on Wednesday. McQuaid, speaking at an anti-doping conference in Paris, also officially welcomed the French National Anti Doping Agency (AFLD) back to the race after their muddy relationship last year.
UCI president Pat McQuaid said several riders currently under suspicion of doping will be named publicly next week, and are likely to face sanctions. McQuaid, attending an anti-doping conference in Paris on Wednesday to announce plans for the fight against doping at next month's Tour de France, would not give any details on the riders involved.
Spanish cyclist Antonio Colom has been provisionally suspended after testing positive for the banned substance EPO, the UCI revealed on Tuesday. Colom had been scheduled to race for the Katusha team in the Tour de France, which begins on July 4. The 31-year-old finished fifth in Paris-Nice in March after winning the race's final stage. Colom has been provisionally suspended ahead of a hearing with the Spanis cycling federation.
Bernhard Kohl ? the Austrian rider who tested positive for the blood-booster CERA during last year’s Tour de France ? admitted that blood doping was the most effective way to cheat. In an extensive interview with the French sports daily L’Equipe, Kohl said extractions of blood began nearly a year before competition.
Press release Team Type 1 Announces Internal Anti-Doping Testing Program Atlanta — Team Type 1 announced today that it has launched its first anti-doping testing program. The world's only professional cycling team that includes riders who have Type 1 diabetes administered blood and urine tests to its riders at training camp in Buellton, Calif., in late January. The samples were tested and analyzed by Scott Analytics Inc., an independent anti-doping test agency in Pasadena, Calif.
After starting an independent anti-doping program by taking samples at the Tour Down Under last month, Lance Armstrong and Anti-Doping Sciences Institute agreed to end the program, Oliver Catlin, the company's CEO and program manager, told VeloNews Wednesday. Catlin, the son of company founder Don Catlin, said expense was a factor, but administration of the program, coordination with other testers and communicating the results to the public also were challenges that led to the "mutual decision to end the program."
The Licence Commission today granted “wild card” labels to the following 13 teams, for a period of one year: • Vorarlberg – Corratec (AUT) • Landbouwkrediet – Colnago (BEL) • Topsport Vlaanderen – Mercator (BEL) • Andalucia – Cajasur (ESP) • Contentpolis – AMPO (ESP) • Barloworld (GBR) • Ceramica Flaminia – Bossini Docce (IRL) • ISD (ITA) • Skil – Shimano (NED) • Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team (NED) • Cervelo Test Team (SUI) • BMC Racing Team (USA) • Serramenti PVC Diquigiovanni – Androni Giocattoli (VEN)
After a taste of the yellow jersey in the 2008 Tour de France, Kim Kirchen is taking aim for even more in 2009. The 30-year-old isn’t standing up and calling himself a candidate for overall victory, but he is staking out a realistic goal of the top-5 and, with a little luck, the podium. With back-to-back seventh place Tour finishes, Kirchen has the confidence that his time trialing has improved enough to let him expect to make further improvements in 2009.
U.S. based Pro Continental team BMC is hoping to get wild card status again this year so it can earn invitations to ProTour events. Team director Gavin Chilcott left the team's training camp last week to fly to Swizerland to appear before the UCI License Commission. In a team statement. Chilcott said the team has applied for wild card status, which among other things, requires that the team participate in the UCI's Biological Passport anti-doping program. The team attained wild card status in 2008.
Following recent declarations published in the press according to which the profiles of some thirty riders registered in the biological passport are to be considered as suspect, the International Cycling Union (UCI) would like to clarify this matter. In actual fact, these statements do not correspond exactly to what an in-depth analysis by the UCI experts has established is the present situation. Throughout 2008 the UCI collected approximately 8’300 blood samples which were integrated into the biological passports of 804 riders.
The Union Cycliste International (UCI) has taken issue with published reports that some 30 riders registered in the so-called biological-passport system have come under suspicion. Sports physician Robin Parisotto, an anti-doping expert at the Australian Institute for Sport who analyzes blood tests for the UCI, told German television ARD on Sunday that 30 riders were under suspicion of having doped and that some of those could face bans from competition.
Team Columbia and Team Garmin-Chipotle are hiring the Anti-Doping Sciences Institute, run by well-known anti-doping researcher Don Catlin, to provide independent testing program for the teams next season, the teams announced Monday. ADSI also will be testing Lance Armstrong next year. The ADSI program takes over from ACE, a company that had been doing testing for Columbia, Garmin-Chipotle and Team BMC before shutting down last month. Columbia's owner Bob Stapleton said Catlin's program complements the UCI's biological passport program.
The owner of Team Columbia says the recent closure of the team's internal anti-doping testing firm will not leave his riders unsupervised. The UCI's biological passport testing, along with other testing by anti-doping agencies, will fill the gap while the team hustles to line up new internal testing, Bob Stapleton told VeloNews Friday.
International Cycling Union President Pat McQuaid issued the following statement Wednesday:
“The UCI conducts a robust anti-doping programme which consists of a large volume of good quality tests leading to a corresponding number of detections. We’ve worked well with the AFLD in the past so I don’t understand why there should be any confusion as to how we implement testing on riders.
There were some interesting numbers released by the professional cycling group (CPA) this week that revealed the biological passport is being implemented on a wide scale. Over the course of the 2008 season, some 6501 blood and urine samples were collected from 749 racers as part of the UCI’s effort to create a biological profile for each rider. The so-called biological passport is an ambitious anti-doping effort initiated by UCI officials, who insist that creating a biological profile of individual riders is one of the most effective tools in catching cheats.
Can someone explain this? Sure, I'm happy that Stefan Schumacher and Leonardo Piepoli have been caught using EPO, but can anyone explain why it took three months for these results to show up? It only took a few days to nail Riccardo Riccò for the same infraction. Why did it take so long this time around? Did it really take the lab three months to test those samples?
Redwood City, California Hello Robert,
COMMUNIQUE DE PRESSE PRESS RELEASE Date: 7 octobre / 7 October 2008 Analysis of Tour de France samples by the AFLD: three abnormal results The French Anti-Doping Agency (Agence Française de Lutte contre le Dopage – AFLD) has informed the International Cycling Union (UCI) of the results of first analyses of repeat tests conducted on samples taken during this year's Tour de France to detect any use of EPO (CERA in particular).
The UCI has raised doubts over whether Lance Armstrong will be allowed to compete at January's Tour Down Under in Australia. Armstrong, the seven-time Tour de France winner, has targeted the first ProTour race of the season as his comeback race after a three-year absence from the professional peloton. However the international ruling body, said Armstrong would have to show that he has complied UCI's “biological passport” rule demanding that athletes must be registered with an anti-doping program for at least six months six months prior to competing.
UCI president Pat McQuaid has called for more support from the World Anti-Doping Agency following comments by WADA president John Fahey which placed doubt on cycling's future at the Olympics. WADA chief Fahey said Monday that cycling was among several sports, including weightlifting, that risked their Olympic futures if they continue to be plagued by doping. McQuaid, speaking a day after it was announced that Spanish cyclist Maria Isobel Moreno had tested positive for EPO (erythropoietin), admitted that cycling has been left with an unwelcome legacy.
Shortly after the official result sheet of last Saturday’s Tour de France time trial was dropped on my table at the pressroom in St. Amand-Montrond, I made an interesting discovery. All but one of the riders who had just taken the top 15 places in the challenging 53km test either represent teams that have a strong internal anti-doping program (CSC-Saxo Bank, Garmin-Chipotle and Team Columbia) and/or are members of the Movement for Credible Cycling (Gerolsteiner, Rabobank, Garmin and Columbia).
Astana has sacked Russian rider Vladimir Gusev for reportedly showing “abnormal values” during the team’s internal doping checks. "Vladimir Gusev has been officially informed that he is no longer part of the team Astana," said general manager Johan Bruyneel in a news release. The three-time Russian time-trial champion showed "abnormal values" during an internal doping check, according to the release.
French police have taken Spaniard Manuel Beltran away for questioning in the wake of the first doping scandal to emerge at this year's Tour de France. Beltran, best known for helping Lance Armstrong to the last three of his seven Tour de France wins, tested positive for the blood booster erythropoietin (EPO) on the Tour's opening stage, according to top anti-doping officials on Friday.
The agency charged with carrying out anti-doping controls at this year's Tour de France has played down a report that 10 riders are about to be issued warnings for "suspect" blood samples. A report in the French newspaper Le Monde on Friday suggested that the riders were being specifically targeted by the AFLD, France's national anti-doping agency, because of suspected doping. However a statement by the AFLD, later in the day, dismissed those claims as speculation.
American legend Greg LeMond believes there have been enough positive changes in cycling that he can believe in the winner of the Tour de France. LeMond, 47, returned to the Tour this week for the first since the late 1990s, when he become so disillusioned with cycling’s doping problems that he refused to even attend the race that he won three times.
Just when it looked as though healing was coming to the scarred relationship between the grand tour organizers and the Union Cycliste Internationale, the wounds just opened again. After the recent Giro d’Italia and April’s Paris-Roubaix were successfully run under UCI regulations as part of the international body’s Historical Calendar, it seemed that the upcoming Tour de France might be similarly promoted.
COMMUNIQUE DE PRESSE PRESS RELEASE Date 3 juin / June 2008 Tour de France to be organised under the aegis of the FFC: UCI response The International Cycling Union (UCI) has noted the request by ASO to register the Tour de France on the national calendar of the French Cycling Federation (FFC) rather than on the UCI’s international calendar. The UCI considers the FFC’s support for ASO’s request deeply regrettable for sport and for the unity of the cycling family.
World cycling chiefs said Thursday their athlete's 'passport' scheme will be maintained despite losing backing from the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA). The World Anti-Doping Agency has withdrawn its endorsement for the Athlete's Passport project from the UCI after the cycling body launched a lawsuit against a former WADA chief. The International Cycling Union (UCI) recently launched a 'biological passport', which records and charts athletes' blood and urine parameters, as a new and seemingly effective weapon in the fight against doping.