Pietro Caucchioli Banned

Italian professional road racing cyclist, Pietro Caucchioli (born 28 August 1975 in Bovolone, Veneto), was suspended for two years by the National Anti-Doping Tribunal of the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) for doping from abnormalities found in his biological passport.

The 34-year-old was given a two-year suspension and a fine by the Italian National Olympic Committee (CONI). The cyclist was suspended by his Lampre team it was revealed he was showing abnormal values in the system. The suspension of Caucchioli is retroactive to June 18, 2009, ending June 17, 2011. The cyclist was provisionally suspended since June of 2009 because of abnormal values in his Biological Passport, something that has now been officially deemed a breach of the Anti-Doping Rules.

The cyclist was disqualified of all his results obtained as from 7 May 2009. The UCI examined many blood samples belonging to the cyclist between April 2008 and May 2009 and found the athlete violating the anti-doping regulations prohibiting methods of enhancing oxygen transfer (blood doping). Caucchioli filed a statement of appeal to the Court of Arbitration of Sports on 23 July 2010 for requesting the annulment of the CONI decision that suspended him for a period of two years starting on 18 June 2009. The CAS Panel also evaluated all the objections raised by Pietro Caucchioli concerning possible preanalytical and analytical irregularities that may have been committed by some laboratories and that may, in turn, have affected the reliability of the results.

Pietro Caucchioli (Lampre) and Francesco de Bonis (Diquigiovanni) were the two Italian cyclists who were identified in cycling’s new rigorous anti-doping biological passport program and were suspended by their respective teams. The problems of Caucchioli started when he provided a blood test on the eve of the Tour of Poland in September 2008 before he joined the team. The duo, along with former world road race champion Igor Astarloa and two other Spanish cyclists were identified by the UCI due to irregularities from blood samples on their respective passports. The ICU said, the five had “violated the anti-doping rules on the basis of information from blood profiles on their biological passport.”

Caucchioli was also implicated by Bernhard Kohl in the Austrian case revolving around his ex-manager Stefan Matschiner and the blood bank HumanPlasma. Kohl remarked that Caucchioli made a one-time payment for using the blood centrifuge that was purchased by himself, fellow cyclist Michael Rasmussen, and cross country skiing champion Christian Hoffman.

Kohl was banned for testing positive for EPO CERA and told investigators from Austria that top cyclists, Thomas Dekker and Pietro Caucchioli, had used blood-doping centrifuges acquired by his former manager Stefan Matschiner between 2006 and 2008. Kohl apparently said Matschiner him that cyclists Michael Boogerd, Thomas Dekker, and Pietro Caucchioli had used the machines in exchange for a one-time payment. A two-time Dutch champion, Dekker, and Caucchioli were both kept out of 2009 Tour de France after testing positive for doping while Boogerd retired in October 2007. Matschiner, who has admitted to performing irregular blood transfusions for Kohl, was also the manager of Danish cyclist Michael Rasmussen who got thrown off the race at the 2007 Tour de France following doping allegations.

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