The doping control samples submitted by riders in the Tour de France will be stored for a period of ten years for the purpose of retrospective analysis. This announcement was made by the UCI, the Cycling Anti-Doping Foundation (CADF), and French Anti-Doping Agency (AFLD).

Cycling’s governing body, the UCI, announced that all three bodies have agreed to keep the samples for potential retrospective analyses in the future. The statement read all the collected samples as for all Grand Tours concerning the best five riders in the general classification will be kept for ten years for potential retrospective analyses. In total, 656 doping controls were carried out at the Tour de France and 482 blood samples were analyzed against the biological passport.

In a press release, UCI president Brian Cookson said he would like to emphasize again the excellent climate in which all the stakeholders involved in the fight against doping are working together on a daily basis for the benefit of the sport.

Cookson, said we can be confident of the robustness of our program thanks to the sharing of information between all anti-doping actors and a strategy focused on even more targeted controls. Dr Francesco Rossi of the Cycling Anti-Doping Foundation remarked targeted controls have been strengthened by testers based on information offered by sources and the support of an intelligence analyst.

Katusha’s Luca Paolini was kicked off the Tour de France after he tested positive for cocaine. Paolini, who won Gent-Wevelgem earlier this year, tested positive after producing an adverse analytical finding of cocaine following a test taken after the cobbled stage 4 of the French Grand Tour. Paolini has been provisionally suspended by his team and is still awaiting the result of his B sample. In July this year, the UCI announced Paolini was informed of an Adverse Analytical Finding of Cocaine (Benzoylecgonine metabolite) in a sample collected in the scope of an in-competition control on 7 July 2015 during the Tour de France. Cocaine is banned in-competition, but not outside of competition. The 38-year-old faces a possible four-year ban if his B-sample analysis confirms the positive. Paolini has been claiming innocence but apologize for the damage he and the positive test had caused.

Paolini’s former teammate Giampaolo Caruso was suspended by the team after he tested positive via retrospective testing for Erythropoietin in 2012. Caruso returned a positive test for EPO in an out-of-competition anti-doping test taken on March 27, 2012. In a statement, Team Katusha had remarked it was informed by the UCI that Italian rider Giampaolo Caruso has been notified of an Adverse Analytical Finding. It was added that the presence of erythropoietin has been detected in a sample collected on 27th March 2012 the rider has been provisionally suspended in accordance with the UCI Regulations. This is the second anti-doping offense of Caruso as he tested positive for Nandrolone on January 25, 2003 and received a suspension of six months. The Italian rider was due to start the Vuelta a España behind team leader Joaquim Rodriguez but was suspended before.

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