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by Shane Stokes
December 23, 2017
Prudhomme wants quick resolution to Froome adverse analytical finding case; Australian and world cycling mourns loss of Jason Lowndes; Heart surgery will mean Boom misses the Tour Down Under; Tour stage winners Roglic and Groenewegen extend contracts, Kruijswijk to miss Giro; Scarponi’s wife: “We never felt alone or abandoned”; After leaving Israel Cycling Academy, Orken talks about future plans; Cycling Australia announces ‘landmark’ TV coverage for national road race championships; Rás Tailteann confirmed for 2018 despite ongoing sponsor search; Video: Uran highlights Colombian talent; Video: Bizarre spin session
Tour de France race director Christian Prudhomme already saw the race dogged by uncertainty involving a defending champion, with Alberto Contador competing in the event one year after testing positive for Clenbuterol in the 2010 edition.
Contador ultimately lost his fifth place in the 2011 Tour; he didn’t win, which helped minimise the fallout, but it was still an unwelcome distraction on that event. Now, six years later, he’s worried that the same thing might happen with 2017 race winner Chris Froome.
The Briton has a cloud hanging over him after it recently emerged that he had an adverse analytical finding for the specified substance salbutamol. The level detected in Froome’s system after stage 17 of the Vuelta a Espana was twice the maximum permitted level, meaning he could well lose his Vuelta title and incur a suspension.
“We want the situation to be cleared up, to get out of the darkness and ambiguity,” Prudhomme told France TV. “We obviously want an investigation to be conducted. We don’t want it to last for months and months, so we can have an answer from the UCI as soon as possible next season.”
Prior to the news of the positive case being leaked by the Guardian and Le Monde newspapers, Froome committed to chasing victory in both the Giro d’Italia and the Tour de France. It is still unclear why he did so while knowing that he had a serious adverse analytical case looming.