World cycling’s governing body, the UCI, has revealed that seven cyclists from South America have been provisionally suspended after returning positive A samples following doping controls at a number of races in recent months.
Samples taken from Brazilian riders Tiago Damasceno (São Francisco Saúde-Ribeirão Preto) and Flavio Reblin (Grce Memorial-Pref. de Santos-Giant) at last July’s Tour of Rio tested positive for the anabolic steroid Stanozolol.
Meanwhile samples obtained at September’s Volta Ciclistica Do Sao Paulo from the Chilean rider Manuel Villalobos (Clube Dataro De Ciclismo/Foz Do Iguaçu) and another Brazilian, Wagner Alves (Clube De Ciclismo São José Dos), tested positive for the same substance.
That latter race also resulted in a positive test from a fourth Brazilian, Elton Silva (São Lucas Saúde/Giant/Uac/Americana), for cardiac stimulant mephentermine and phentermine, an appetite suppressant with similar properties to amphetamines.
Finally, Peruvian cyclist Ronald Luza (AMC Viacha) and the Bolivian Fernando Espindola (Glas Casa Real Tarija) both returned positive samples during November’s Vuelta a Bolivia, their urine containing traces of substances including cocaine, 19-norandrosterone (a metabolite of the anabolic steroid nandrolone) and Boldenone, an anabolic steroid usually used by vets to treat horses.
Each cyclist now faces a hearing by their respective national federations to determine whether they have committed a violation under Article 21 of the UCI Anti-Doping Rules. They each have the right, as permitted in such cases, to request analysis of their B sample.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.