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Top Russian female pro Tatiana Antoshina handed four-year ban for doping

Astana had already decided to fire multiple road and TT champ before test last year because she failed to integrate herself into team

Multiple Russian women’s time trial and road champion Tatiana Antoshina has been banned for four years after failing an out-of-competition anti-doping control in May 2016 for a banned growth hormone.

The 34-year-old has a host of podium positions in some of the biggest races in women’s cycling including the Tour of Flanders, Giro della Toscana and Tour de l’Ardeche which she won in 2013.

After stints – none lasting beyond a season – at UCI teams Rabobank, MCipollini-Giordana, RusVelo and Servetto-Footon, she moved to the Astana Women’s Team at the start of 2016.

She was fired by the Kazakh team in July last year it emerged that she had tested positive for the banned substance GHRP-2 in an out-of-competition test on 31 May.

Before news of the adverse analytical finding broke, she won her seventh Russian time trial title, and she has also twice been national champion on the road twice.

In its statement, Astana revealed that it had already decided to terminate her employment even prior to her failed drugs test because she had failed to integrate herself in the team, including missing a pre-season training camp.

It added that her positive test "paradoxically simplifies things because Antoshina will inevitably be fired on the spot."

Simon has been news editor at since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.

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