Nairo Quintana’s Tramadol appeal dismissed by CAS

The Colombian twice tested positive for the banned painkiller at the Tour de France and was subsequently disqualified.

by Amy Jones

photography by Getty Images


Nairo Quintana has lost his appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) against a decision from the UCI to retroactively disqualify the Colombian rider who returned a positive for Tramadol. The banned painkiller was found in blood samples given at the 2022 Tour de France on stages 7 and 11 as Quintana rode to 6th in the general classification.

The 32-year-old filed the appeal on the October 12 with the decision being reported on Thursday November 3.

“The Court for Arbitration in Sport has issued its decision today in the arbitration procedure between the Colombian cyclist Nairo Quintana and the Union Cycliste International (UCI),” the CAS statement began. “The CAS panel in charge of the matter has dismissed the appeal and confirmed the decision issued by the UCI Medical Director on 17 August 2022 (the Challenged Decision) in which Nairo Quintana was found to have infringed the UCI Medical Rules (presence of tramadol in competition) and was sanctioned with the disqualification of the results he obtained at the Tour de France 2022 and a fine of CHF 5,000.”

The CAS statement detailed that the panel found “that the UCI’s in-competition ban on Tramadol was for medical rather than doping reasons and was therefore within the UCI’s power and jurisdiction” and that “the Panel was comfortably satisfied that the scientific evidence showed that Nairo Quintana’s samples contained both Tramadol and its two metabolites. On this basis, the Panel concluded that the Challenged Decision should stand, and dismissed the appeal.”

The UCI also released a statement saying: “The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) welcomes today’s decision rendered by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) confirming the disqualification of Colombian rider Nairo Alexander Quintana Rojas from the 2022 Tour de France for an infringement of the in-competition ban on using Tramadol. This decision reinforces the validity of the tramadol ban in the UCI Medical Regulations in order to protect the health and safety of riders.”

Neither Quintana nor his former team, Arkéa Samsic, have commented on the decision yet. Quintana does not currently have a team for the 2023 season.

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