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by Shane Stokes
January 27, 2016
Photography by Caja Rural-Seguros RGA
After just three days as a professional rider, Alberto Gallego underwent an anti-doping test that has now resulted in his dismissal from the Caja Rural – Seguros RGA team.
The 25 year old Spaniard underwent the test on January 3rd and, according to the UCI, the A sample was deemed positive for a metabolite of Stanozolol.
The anabolic steroid is the substance Ben Johnson tested positive for during the 1988 Olympics.
Although Gallego has the right to have his B sample tested, his team has moved quickly. It released a statement which revealed he was no longer part of the setup.
“Caja Rural – Seguros RGA announce that the team has decided to terminate the contract of its rider Alberto Gallego after hearing about the anomalies found in the result of the anti-doping test taken on the 3rd of January 2016,” it stated on Tuesday.
“The decision is in accordance with the provisions in the current regulations and in compliance with the internal regulations of the team. The rider joined the team on the 1st of January 2016 and has not participated in any races in the 2016 season.
“The team is disappointed by this news as it strives to participate in a clean sport.”
Gallego was due to race in Sunday’s GP Marseillaise, making his pro debut there. Instead, he is facing a lengthy ban if his B sample is also confirmed as positive.
The rider was top in the Spanish amateur category and signed for the Portuguese Radio Popular Continental team in 2014.
He spent two years there, with third on a stage and third overall in the 2.1-ranked Vuelta Comunidad de Madrid plus seventh overall in the similarly-rated Route du Sud being his best results.
Responding to news of his positive test, Caja Rural rider claims innocence and blames contamination