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Page last updated at 10:25 GMT, Friday, 18 July 2008 11:25 UK

Cavendish backs doping crackdown

Mark Cavendish celebrates winning his third stage of this year's Tour de France
Cavendish celebrates his third stage win in this year's Tour

Britain's Mark Cavendish has expressed his satisfaction that cycling's drug cheats in continue to be exposed.

His third win in this year's Tour de France came after hours after Riccardo Ricco was named as the third rider to fail a test for the blood booster EPO.

Cavendish said: "Cycling's a passion, and maybe people who resort to doping don't have the same passion as me.

"I'm in the sport I love, which I don't want tarnished. It's good that the tests are working."

Italy's Ricco - himself a two-stage winner in this year's Tour - produced a positive sample after the time-trial stage at Cholet on 8 July.

It prompted his Saunier Duval team to withdraw from the race, despite being given permission by Tour organisers Amaury Sports Organisation to continue.


After his latest victory, Cavendish, 23, warned that despite the deterrents, some riders are still prepared to risk doping.

"I think you're always going to get people who think they can cheat the system, whether it's in cycling, another sport or business," said the Isle of Man sprint specialist.

In winning Thursday's stage in Narbonne, Cavendish became the first Briton to win three times in the Tour, surpassing another sprinter, Barry Hoban, who won two stages in both 1969 and 1973.

see also
Cavendish win makes Tour history
17 Jul 08 |  Cycling
Stage 12 as it happened
17 Jul 08 |  Cycling
Spanish rider Nevado fails test
16 Jul 08 |  Cycling

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