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Saturday 01, Nov 2014

  Tiernan-Locke Says He Has No Respect For The Doping Sanction

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Tiernan-Locke Says He Has No Respect For The Doping Sanction

Jonathan Tiernan-Locke, the former Team Sky rider who was banned from cycling for two years in July, hits back at UCI President Brian Cookson. The cyclist remarked he has no respect for the doping sanction placed on him after Cookson described him as “foolish” for comments he made about the governing body and its disciplinary procedures.

Tiernan-Locke described the UK Anti-Doping Agency (UKAD) hearing into his case as a “Mickey Mouse court” when he appeared at the Exmoor Beast sportive. The cyclist added he will make a return to professional bike racing when his doping ban ends in December 2015 and remarked he will take some kind of coaching in the meantime.

Speaking at the Tour de France route presentation, Cookson said it is very foolish and not a wise thing for Jonathan to term UKAD anti-doping hearing as a Mickey Mouse court. Cookson said Jonathan has to look at the terms and conditions of his sanction and added that he is afraid that he is banned from coaching or any event in any capacity that has anything to do with the UCI or any national federation affiliated with the UCI. Cookson went on to add that the cyclist would be wise to accept his sanction and if he wants to return in two years, then let us see what happens. Tiernan-Locke responded by saying that he would not waste his time reading the terms and has no respect for the sanction. The cyclist added he has no faith in the governing body and said he will continue coaching and giving advice to athletes and nobody can stop him from doing that.

The 29-year-old from Devon became the first Sky rider to be banned under anti-doping rules.  The former Team Sky rider was banned for anomalies in his biological passport. The 29-year-old has maintained that the discrepancy was due to dehydration brought on by a binge drinking session 32 hours earlier. Tiernan-Locke was stripped of his 2012 Tour of Britain title after the positive test and is also stripped of his result from 2012 World Championship road race. Jonathan Tiernan-Locke is ineligible to race until December 31, 2015. The contract of Jonathan was terminated by Team Sky after his anti-doping suspension was confirmed. Sky team principal Dave Brailsford had remarked Jonathan’s contract has been terminated and added whilst there have been no doubts about his time with us, his doping violation – from readings taken before he joined this team – means there’s no place for him in Team Sky. We’ve a well-known stance on anti-doping and our action is the inevitable outcome of a violation.

The UCI, in a statement, had revealed that it confirms receipt of the United Kingdom National Anti-Doping Panel’s decision on the Jonathan Tiernan-Locke case. It added that a two-year ban was imposed on the rider as a result of his anti-doping rule violation based on his Athlete Biological Passport and he is declared ineligible until December 31, 2015 and disqualified from the 2012 Tour of Britain and the 2012 UCI Road World Championships, competitions during which abnormalities were clearly identified.

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Saturday 22, Mar 2014

  Doping Case Of Tiernan-Locke Is Imminent, Says UK Anti-Doping Chief

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Doping Case Of Tiernan-Locke Is Imminent, Says UK Anti-Doping Chief

UK Anti-Doping chief executive Andy Parkinson has remarked that the doping case of Team Sky rider Jonathan Tiernan-Locke is likely to be heard within a month.

Speaking at the Tackling Doping in Sport conference at Wembley, Parkinson said that was now close to being heard. “imminently,” and added that clearly the issue with that case is that it was in the public domain earlier than was ideal, and earlier than we put out a notice of charge.  Parkinson added the process has seemed longer than it has been because we only received the notification after Christmas and biological passport cases are difficult to run and you need a lot of expert witnesses.

The former Tour of Britain winner became the first rider of Team Sky to be charged with doping, a charge that he vehemently denies. This was after discrepancies in his biological passport were found by the International Cycling Union (UCI) suggesting that the rider had taken drugs. The findings came from the rider’s time on the Endura racing team for whom he won the Tour of Britain in 2012, said Team Sky.

The UCI confirmed that it had initiated disciplinary proceedings against the 28-year-old rider. In a statement, the UCI said the analysis of the biological passport of Jonathan Tiernan-Locke by the experts panel has demonstrated an anti-doping rule violation (use of prohibited substances and/or methods) and the UCI has requested his national federation to initiate disciplinary proceedings consequently, and in compliance with the UCI Anti-Doping Rules. The UCI statement also revealed that the World Anti-Doping Agency and UK Anti-Doping have been notified of the matter pursuant to the UCI Anti-Doping Rules and the WADA code.

The representatives of Tiernan-Locke issued a statement protesting his innocence and confirmed he would fight the charges. The statement reads that Jonathan Tiernan-Locke was notified that the UCI wish to instruct British Cycling to instigate proceedings against him regarding an abnormality in his biological passport. It also revealed that Tiernan-Locke vehemently denies the charges brought against him and has informed the UCI that he fully intends to contest them and Tiernan-Locke will not ride for Team Sky, attend training camps or undertake any team duties until a decision is made in these proceedings and added that Tiernan-Locke is looking forward to a speedy and just resolution of these unfortunate charges. The statement by the rider’s representatives added that Tiernan-Locke will make no further comment on the matter until a decision has been reached.

According to a confirmation by the UK Anti-Doping director of legal Graham Arthur, the doping case of the rider has been handed to it for management. Arthur added we are progressing on a case relating to a possible anti-doping rule violation and the matter is subject to confidentiality restrictions imposed by the Anti-Doping Rules, and as such we are unable to comment further as this protects the rights of all involved. He also added that all violations of the World Anti-Doping Code are published on our website if confirmed, when sanctions have been agreed and all appeal windows are over.

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Thursday 20, Mar 2014

  Team Sky Drop Sergio Henao

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Team Sky Drop Sergio Henao

Colombian rider Sergio Henao has been withdrawn from racing by Team Sky to conduct further tests after questions over his blood values were provoked by the team’s monthly review.

According to Team Sky, the 26-year-old Henao will be subject to an “altitude research program.” Meanwhile, the rider has been withdrawn from racing for a period of eight weeks that means Henao is unlikely to start the opening Grand Tour of the season, the Giro d’Italia, which begins in Belfast on May 9th. A biological passport violation may lead up to a ban of two years for a first-time offense.

Henao, whose younger cousin, Sebastian, joined Team Sky for 2014, was believed to start the Tour de France as a support rider for Chris Froome, the defending champion. Henao was expected to race the Dauphiné Libéré stage race in June and then was believed to make his debut in the Tour in support of the title defense of Froome.

Team Sky Principal Sir Dave Brailsford said our experts had questions about Sergio’s out-of-competition control tests at altitude – tests introduced this winter by the anti-doping authorities and we need to understand these readings better. Brailsford added we contacted the relevant authorities – the UCI (International Cycling Union) and CADF (Cycling Anti-Doping Foundation) – pointed to these readings and asked whether they could give us any insights. The Team Sky principal also remarked we have also taken Sergio out of our race program whilst we get a better understanding of these profiles and his physiology and said we want to do the right thing and we want to be fair and it is important not to jump to conclusions.

Brailsford went on to add that our own understanding is limited by a lack of scientific research into ‘altitude natives’ such as Sergio, who was born at altitude in Rionegro, near Medellín, at an altitude of 7,000 feet and lives & trains in the region outside of the racing season. He also remarked we are commissioning independent scientific research to better understand the effects of prolonged periods at altitude after returning from sea level, specifically on altitude natives and added the independent experts are looking to use WADA-accredited laboratories and Team Sky will make the data and findings available to the World Anti-Doping Agency, the UCI, and the Cycling Anti-Doping Foundation (CADF).

Sir Dave Brailsford also said Sergio will help with this program and we expect him to be out of the race schedule for at least eight weeks and once we have completed our assessment, we’ll decide on the right steps and give a full update.

Team Sky’s move was supported by the UCI that said we as a matter of principle are supportive of teams pursuing a policy of closely monitoring their athletes. A UCI spokesperson said this is something that has been monitored by the team and this is Team Sky’s own program and that’s very important.

This is the second blood anomaly involving Team Sky after anti-doping disciplinary action was faced by Jonathan Tiernan-Locke, the 2012 Tour of Britain winner, after his blood passport data was found to contain anomalies.

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Tuesday 24, Dec 2013

  Team Sky Rider To Face Anti-Doping Hearing

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Team Sky Rider To Face Anti-Doping Hearing

Jonathan Tiernan-Locke, the British professional road racing cyclist who rides for UCI ProTeam Team Sky, is facing disciplinary proceedings after an anti-doping violation was shown by analysis of his biological passport. The cyclist pulled out of the 2013 World Championships in September after he was asked by the International Cycling Union (UCI) to explain his results.

Meanwhile, Team Sky has reiterated its stance that the readings were taken before he signed with the team in 2012 and Jonathan Tiernan-Locke denies any wrongdoing. A statement from the Devon-based rider’s management company said Tiernan-Locke vehemently denies the charges brought against him and has informed the UCI that he fully intends to contest them.

Team Sky, in a separate statement, said we understand that the violation was highlighted by an anomaly in his biological passport, in a reading taken before he signed for this team. Team Sky added that there are no doubts about his approach or performance in Team Sky and this is a team that trains, races, and wins clean. It went on to add that Jonathan Tiernan-Locke will not ride for Team Sky or take part in any team activities – including training camps and all team duties – until a decision is made in this disciplinary hearing process.

In a confirmatory statement, the UCI said it has requested his National Federation (British Cycling) to initiate disciplinary proceedings in compliance with the UCI Anti-Doping Rules. A British Cycling spokesman remarked that British Cycling can confirm that it has been asked by the UCI to begin proceedings against Jonathan Tiernan-Locke based on an analysis of his biological passport. The spokesman added those proceedings will be managed independently of British Cycling by UK Anti-Doping as with any other doping violation charge.

In a statement, UK Anti-Doping director of legal Graham Arthur said we are progressing on a case relating to a possible anti-doping rule violation and the matter is subject to confidentiality restrictions imposed by the anti-doping rules, and as such we are unable to comment further.

Jonathan Tiernan-Locke raced for Endura Racing in the 2012 season and claimed overall wins in the Tour Mediterranean, Tour du Haut Var, and Tour Alsace and became the first British rider since 1993 to win the Tour of Britain in September of 2012.

Endura team manager Brian Smith extended his support for the cyclist and said Jonathan Tiernan-Locke is not a doper and Endura racing was a no doping stance and as far as he is concerned Tiernan-Locke was true to his word. He went on to add that the cyclist throughout the Tour of Britain was urine tested every day and a blood booster would have shown up, so it doesn’t make sense.

In the past, UCI president Brian Cookson, remarking on this case, had said he is concerned that it’s leaked out because he doesn’t think this information should be in the public domain while someone is being questioned and that’s not the same at all as them being guilty and let’s see what happens.

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