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by Shane Stokes
August 18, 2017
In today’s Daily News Digest: Gautier wins stage three of the Tour du Limousin; Former Olympic champion Samuel Sánchez fails anti-doping test; Sánchez: ‘I’m about to retire. Why would I do this?’; Quintana dismisses suggestions he could leave Movistar; Woods leads Cannondale-Drapac in Vuelta a España; Team Sky announces signings of Jonathan Castroviejo and David de la Cruz; Australian sprinter Perkins granted Russian citizenship by Putin; Winder, Mannion lead USA Cycling Pro Road Tour; Alberto Contador Foundation and Trek-Segafredo to set up Continental development team; Video: Cycling Motivation – Never Give Up; Video: Ferda Girls (Humble Parody)
Following the news of his positive doping control, Samuel Sánchez has, predictably, insisted upon his innocence. “I’m 39 years old, I did 19 years as a professional and I’m about to retire. Why should I do this?” he told the EFE agency.
The BMC Racing Team rider was responding to the statement issued by the UCI earlier on Thursday, in which it said that an anti-doping control had been carried out on the rider on August 9. The A sample from this test revealed traces of the peptide GHRP, which stimulates the release of growth hormones.
“I found out this morning,” Sánchez continued. “They told me by phone and email and I could not believe it. The lawyers have told me not to make statements because we have to wait for the result of the analysis of sample B.”
The UCI has provisionally suspended him and said that he can attend the analysis of the B sample. Until that second sample is analysed no final decision will be made as regards his guilt or innocence, but B sample results are very seldom different.
“It is an adverse result, not a positive result,” he said. “In any case for me it has been a total surprise. I cannot believe it. I heard the news in Nimes (France, where Saturday will start the Tour of Spain), and now go home to wait.” Sánchez had been hoping to ride strongly in his final Grand Tour, but looks set to end his career in a very different fashion.