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Friday, 10 August, 2001, 11:06 GMT 12:06 UK
Hamburger cleared of EPO use
Bo Hamburger
Hamburger (left) won silver at the 1997 world c'ship
Danish cyclist Bo Hamburger has been acquitted of using the performance-enhancing drug erythropoietin by the Danish Sports Federation (DSF).

The CSC-Tiscali rider had been the first rider to test positive under the International Cycling Union (UCI)'s new EPO test on 19 April at the tour of Flèche Wallonne.

The DSF said there were doubts about the outcome of tests on Hamburger's samples.

The chairman of the national doping committee Ejner Dahlberg Larsen said: "We cannot ignore that one of the two final B-samples was below the 80% threshold, which the UCI has set as proof of EPO use."

First I must have some rest but then I'll go out to ride again
  Bo Hamburger
In one test, an EPO rate of 82.4% was detected while the other showed a rate of 78.6%.

Hamburger has always denied taking EPO. He suggested that the second test was negative and that the UCI had fudged the result to cover up doubts about the new method of detection.

"First I must have some rest but then I'll go out to ride again," he told Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet after his acquittal.

"I've been in the middle of a matter that I never have understood, but I have had the best support possible with me."

According to team manager Bjarne Riis, Hamburger is now back on the CSC-Tiscal team.

Hamburger's acquittal has cast doubt on the whole EPO-testing procedure.

The evidence compiled for the defence of Hamburger rested on an alleged admission from the head of the IOC-accredited laboratory in Switzerland that carried out the test.

Laurent Rivier reportedly told journalists from Ekstra Bladet that the test for EPO was "not 100% trustworthy".

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08 Aug 01 |  World Athletics
EPO - a new drug problem
10 May 01 |  Other Sports
Hamburger tests positive
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