Russian cyclist Denis Galimzyanov has been provisionally suspended after traces of the blood booster EPO were found in a urine sample, the International Cycling Union (UCI) announced on Monday. The decision was taken after a laboratory in Cologne published a report indicating that EPO had been detected in an out-of-competition urine sample provided by Galimzyanov on March 22 this year.
The provisional suspension will remain in effect until the Russian Cycling Federation holds a hearing to determine whether or not Galimzyanov contravened the UCI's anti-doping rules. Galimzyanov has the right to ask for a B sample to be analyzed.
EVANS BOWS OUT OF ARDENNES
Tour de France winner Cadel Evans has withdrawn from this week's two Ardennes classics - the Fleche Wallonne and the Liege-Bastogne-Liege - because of a sinus infection, his BMC team said on Monday.
The Australian pulled out of Sunday's Amstel Gold Race, 75km from the line, after working hard for Belgian teammate Philippe Gilbert.
"With his infection we didn't want to take any risks," said team doctor Max Testa. Weather conditions aren't in his favour. Rain and cold conditions are forecast. It was the best decision to take in the interests of the rider."
Evans, who won the Fleche Wallonne in 2010, will return to his home in Switzerland before competing in next week's Tour de Romandie.
"We've still a good team with Philippe Gilbert and Greg Van Avermaet to achieve two good Ardennes races," said team manager John Lelangue. "Cadel came here with the aim of helping them. His main focus is in July (Tour de France)."
MEANWHILE OVER AT TEAM TIBCO...
Megan Guarnier of Team TIBCO/To the Top once again showed she’s not only one of the top Americans racing in the world right now, but one of the top women overall. Guarnier parlayed good teamwork and good positioning to earn a hard-fought 3rd place at the Ronde van Gelderland in The Netherlands Sunday.
“It was good to get on the podium today,” said the Team’s European Directeur Sportif, Angela van Smoorenberg. “Everyone has been racing very hard over here this spring and it’s good for the Team to get such a strong result.”
Guarnier was part of a six-rider break that formed late in the race, with just about 14 km to go. Leading up to that point, the full six-rider Team TIBCO squad had ridden superbly to remain at the front.
“After 20 km there was a big crash, with Jennifer Wheeler and Lauren Hall involved,” van Smoorenberg said. “They both had road rash on their arms and legs, but were able to get back in the race. The crash was just before the hills, and because the commissars neutralized the race for 5 km, the riders did not contest the first two hills.”
When racing did resume, the hills immediately became a factor. By hill number four, the peloton had split into three groups on the road, with all six Team TIBCO riders in the front group of 60. After the last hill the situation was the same, with all six TIBCO riders in the first bunch. With the wind a constant factor, the other groups never came back to the front. With strong headwinds, the peloton stayed together for much of the race until hitting a decisive crosswind section with 14 km to go.
At this point, the winning break including Guarnier formed and would hold a solid gap until the finish, despite a strong chase from several teams that missed out. In the sprint, former Dutch champion Suzanne de Goede took the win ahead of former European champion Chantal Blaak.
“Megan was in good position but the other two riders were very strong,” van Smoorenberg said. “But this is a very good result ahead of Wednesday’s Fleche Wallone World Cup. The girls are racing very well together and it should be a great race.”