Dutch cyclist Marc Lotz has been forced to leave the Quick Step team because of a doping controversy.
The 31-year-old was quoted as saying he took the banned drug erythropoietin (EPO) to boost his endurance ahead of next month's Tour de France.
"Because of the strong violation of the doping laws, we have no other option than to accept this dismissal," said a team statement.
"The team strongly regrets the mistake our rider made."
Lotz, who finished second in the Brabant Arrow classic in Belgium two months ago, was supposed to start in the Dauphine Libere on Sunday.