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USADA retest of Lance Armstrong blood samples proves positive, says French TV show

Positive result will be among evidence presented to UCI, says Stade 2; meanwhile, Tyler Hamilton book goes into detail on alleged doping at USPS

A French television show has claimed that the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) is in possession of blood samples from Lance Armstrong that have been retested, resulting in a positive test for performance enhancing drugs. Meanwhile, a book by Armstrong's former team mate Tyler Hamilton contains the most detailed allegations yet about doping at the US Postal Service team they rode for.

The claim about the positive test was made in a report aired last night on the France 2 television show Stade 2, which added that details of the alleged positive test would be revealed in USADA’s full report on its decision to ban Armstrong for life and strip him of competitive results dating back to August 1998, including his seven Tour de France titles.

The agency announced those sanctions last month after Armstrong chose not to fight the charges against him through arbitration.

Stade 2 said that the full report will be made public by USADA at the same time as it is sent to the UCI, putting the governing body under pressure to endorse its sanctions on the 40-year-old.

The UCI has previously said that it is waiting for USADA’s fully reasoned decision before making a further announcement on the case.

While Armstrong has consistently claimed that he never tested positive during his career, he did test positive for a banned corticosteroid in 1999, but was able to escape sanctions after producing a backdated doctor’s note claiming it had been present in a saddle sore cream.

Part of USADA’s case against Armstrong also concerns what is claimed to be a positive test for EPO during the 2001 Tour de Suisse that was allegedly covered up with the assistance of the UCI, with the rider subsequently donating $125,000 in two payments to the governing body.

Meanwhile, this week sees the publication of a book by Armstrong’s former US Postal Service team mate, Tyler Hamilton, that according to early reviews contains the most detailed allegations to date against the former cyclist as well as his former manager Johan Bruyneel, who has chosen to fight charges against him through arbitration.

The book, called The Secret Race. Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France, Doping, Cover-ups and Winning at All Costs, repeats many of the allegations that Hamilton, now retired but still subject to an eight-year ban as a result of doping, made in the US TV show 60 Minutes last year, but goes into much more detail on specific episodes.

In the book, Hamilton also says that Bjarne Riis, owner and manager of the CSC team he joined after leaving US Postal, introduced him to the Spanish doctor who was later at the centre of the Operacion Puerto enquiry, Eufemiano Fuentes, with Hamilton stating that the physician administered blood doping techniques on him for several years.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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Paul J | 11 years ago

You've forgotten the WADA retrospective R&D testing of the '99 B tour de france B samples. Armstrong's tested positive. UCI refused to sanction simply because the disciplinary rules didn't allow for such retrospective testing, to WADAs' chagrin.

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