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Page last updated at 19:25 GMT, Friday, 26 September 2008 20:25 UK

Lab to re-test Tour blood samples

Riccardo Ricco
Ricco was sacked by Saunier Duval boss Mauro Gianetti in July

France's national anti-doping agency (AFLD) is to begin re-testing blood samples from some riders at this year's Tour de France.

Italian rider Riccardo Ricco tested positive for CERA, a new form of banned blood-booster EPO, at this year's race.

The laboratory at Châtenay-Malabry, near Paris, will use a new, more effective test for CERA.

The samples of around 30 riders will be re-tested, including Ricco's ex-Saunier Duval team-mate Leonardo Piepoli.

Piepolo, 37, who did not fail a dope test during the Tour, won stage 10, a mountain-top finish at Hautacam. The Italian was neverthless later sacked by Saunier Duval for a "violation of the team's ethics code".

Ricco was one of four riders, along with Spaniards Manuel Beltran and Moises Duenas, and Kazakhstan's Dmitri Fofonov, expelled from this year's Tour after failing dope tests.

Prior to the 2008 Tour, where anti-doping controls were escalated, the AFLD took pre-race blood samples from around 30 riders deemed suspect.

see also
Spanish rider Nevado fails test
16 Jul 08 |  Cycling
Spaniard Beltran tests positive
11 Jul 08 |  Cycling

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