Last update 01/11/2023 -

Confidence index (iccd).

Confidence Index Tour de France 2022

"Who can I trust?". This is the question that everyone asks themselves every year at the start of a grand Tour. To provide some answers, since 2021 we have been publishing our ICCD : Confidence Index.

We use this ICCD to attach colored symbols to the names of teams and riders in the lists below.

To understand them, click here .

Indice de Confiance ICCD

The table below establishes, team by team, the count of the riders who have been or will be subsequently "pinned" in doping cases.

Pinned : Number of riders who violated the anti-doping rules. Included in this category: riders who have been tested positive (including refuse to submit to doping control or hematocrit> 50%), having acknowledged having doped, having been sanctioned (by the justice, their federation or their team). Not included (for example) : those whose sample B was negative. Top 10 : number of riders present in the top 10 of the final general classification. Podium : number of riders present in the first 3 of the final general classification.

To understand the color symbols attached to teams and riders, click here .

Other data :

  • Route : Copenhague - Paris
  • Stages : 21
  • Riders : 176
  • Finishers : 135
  • Distance : 3350 km
  • Winning time : 79h 33'20"
  • Average speed of the winner : 42,106 km/h
  • Difference between winner and second rider : 2'43" ie 0,06 %
  • Difference between winner and last rider : 5:40'42" ie 7,14 %
  • Number of doping cases : 1

List of stage winners

Click on the name of a team to open the explanatory sheet of its Confidence Index.

Ranking source:

The official ranking

Ranking source : (24/07/2022)

  • ▰ Vingegaard Rasmussen Jonas in 79h33'20''
  • ▰ Pogacar Tadej at 0h02'43''
  • ▰ Thomas Geraint at 0h07'22''
  • ▰ Gaudu David at 0h13'39''
  • ▰ Vlasov Aleksander at 0h15'46''

Red card

  • ▰ Bardet Romain at 0h18'11''
  • ▰ Meintjes Louis at 0h18'44''
  • ▰ Lutsenko Alexey at 0h22'56''
  • ▰ Yates Adam at 0h24'52''
  • ▰ Madouas Valentin at 0h35'59''
  • ▰ Jungels Bob at 0h45'23''
  • ▰ Powless Neilson at 0h46'57''

Red card

  • ▰ Pinot Thibaut at 0h50'25''
  • ▰ Konrad Patrick at 0h56'54''
  • ▰ Pidcock Thomas at 1h01'15''
  • ▰ Kuss Sepp at 1h02'29''
  • ▰ Teuns Dylan at 1h11'30''
  • ▰ Mcnulty Brandon at 1h31'19''
  • ▰ Jorgenson Matteo at 1h33'57''
  • ▰ Van Aert Wout at 1h35'55''
  • ▰ Schultz Nicholas at 1h39'41''
  • ▰ Houle Hugo at 1h42'14''
  • ▰ Mollema Bauke at 1h45'57''
  • ▰ Uran Rigoberto at 1h48'18''
  • ▰ Verona Quintanilla Carlos at 1h53'03''
  • ▰ Leknessund Andreas at 1h57'31''
  • ▰ Muhlberger Gregor at 1h59'03''
  • ▰ Mart�nez Poveda Daniel Felipe at 2h00'55''
  • ▰ Velasco Simone at 2h04'24''
  • ▰ Van Baarle Dylan at 2h15'34''
  • ▰ K�ng Stefan at 2h15'46''
  • ▰ Sch�nberger Sebastian at 2h16'55''
  • ▰ Storer Michael at 2h23'15''
  • ▰ Benoot Tiesj at 2h23'34''
  • ▰ Gallopin Tony at 2h25'11''
  • ▰ Hamilton Chris at 2h25'38''

Red card

  • ▰ Izagirre Insausti Jon at 2h30'08''
  • ▰ Bettiol Alberto at 2h34'44''
  • ▰ Owsian Lukasz at 2h37'48''
  • ▰ Dombrowski Joseph Lloyd at 2h37'51''
  • ▰ Zimmermann Georg at 2h39'40''
  • ▰ Geschke Simon at 2h41'23''
  • ▰ Schachmann Maximilian at 2h44'04''
  • ▰ Goossens Kobe at 2h46'07''
  • ▰ Geniets Kevin at 2h48'08''
  • ▰ Castroviejo Nicolas Jonathan at 2h51'34''
  • ▰ Bouet Maxime at 2h51'56''
  • ▰ Pasqualon Andrea at 2h56'22''
  • ▰ Santos Simoes Oliveira Nelson Filipe at 2h57'39''
  • ▰ Grossschartner Felix at 2h58'15''
  • ▰ Thomas Benjamin at 3h03'38''
  • ▰ Wright Alfred at 3h04'08''
  • ▰ Politt Nils at 3h10'29''
  • ▰ Latour Pierre-roger at 3h12'06''
  • ▰ Boasson Hagen Edvald at 3h12'58''
  • ▰ Ciccone Giulio at 3h16'44''
  • ▰ Dillier Silvan at 3h17'17''
  • ▰ Skujins Toms at 3h17'28''
  • ▰ Duchesne Antoine at 3h18'18''
  • ▰ Perichon Pierre-luc at 3h25'32''
  • ▰ Tusveld Martijn at 3h28'03''
  • ▰ Dewulf Stan at 3h29'18''
  • ▰ Bonnamour Franck at 3h30'36''
  • ▰ Simmons Quinn at 3h30'44''
  • ▰ Burgaudeau Mathieu at 3h32'06''
  • ▰ Rolland Pierre at 3h34'33''
  • ▰ Swift Connor at 3h35'05''
  • ▰ Sbaragli Kristian at 3h36'18''
  • ▰ Tratnik Jan at 3h37'31''
  • ▰ Kron Andreas Lorentz at 3h37'37''
  • ▰ Louvel Matis at 3h40'06''
  • ▰ Laporte Christophe at 3h40'10''
  • ▰ Gilbert Philippe at 3h41'54''
  • ▰ Niv Guy at 3h44'22''
  • ▰ Matthews Michael at 3h45'59''
  • ▰ Neilands Krists at 3h46'16''
  • ▰ Barthe Cyril at 3h48'34''
  • ▰ Stuyven Jasper at 3h49'28''
  • ▰ Hofstetter Hugo at 3h49'57''
  • ▰ Bissegger Stefan at 3h51'46''
  • ▰ Perez Anthony at 3h52'20''
  • ▰ Capiot Amaury at 3h52'55''
  • ▰ Mohoric Matej at 3h52'57''
  • ▰ Haller Marco at 3h53'05''
  • ▰ Le Gac Olivier at 3h56'05''
  • ▰ Gougeard Alexis at 3h58'15''
  • ▰ Doull Owain at 3h58'19''
  • ▰ Cosnefroy Beno�t at 3h58'31''
  • ▰ Philipsen Jasper at 3h59'10''
  • ▰ Bystrom Sven Erik at 3h59'19''
  • ▰ Rutsch Jonas at 3h59'21''
  • ▰ Ganna Filippo at 4h03'31''
  • ▰ Cattaneo Mattia at 4h03'52''
  • ▰ Riabushenko Aliaksandr at 4h04'20''
  • ▰ Bagioli Andrea at 4h10'00''
  • ▰ Pedersen Mads at 4h11'50''
  • ▰ Dainese Alberto at 4h14'14''
  • ▰ Mezgec Luka at 4h16'13''
  • ▰ Kristoff Alexander at 4h17'14''
  • ▰ Mozzato Luca at 4h18'54''
  • ▰ Krieger Alexander at 4h19'42''
  • ▰ Degenkolb John at 4h23'05''
  • ▰ Rowe Luke at 4h26'40''
  • ▰ S�n�chal Florian at 4h28'14''
  • ▰ Vermeersch Florian at 4h28'53''
  • ▰ Van Poppel Danny at 4h30'28''
  • ▰ Planckaert Edward at 4h33'44''
  • ▰ Petit Adrien at 4h35'05''
  • ▰ Frolich Honore Mikkel at 4h36'55''
  • ▰ Lemoine Cyril at 4h37'29''
  • ▰ Gruzdev Dmitriy at 4h37'36''
  • ▰ Bodnar Maciej at 4h39'32''
  • ▰ Sagan Peter at 4h39'48''
  • ▰ Groenewegen Dylan at 4h40'55''
  • ▰ Gradek Kamil at 4h42'46''
  • ▰ Eekhoff Nils at 4h42'46''
  • ▰ Lampaert Yves at 4h46'14''
  • ▰ Van Moer Brent at 4h49'07''
  • ▰ Bauer Hans Jacob at 4h51'05''
  • ▰ Van Keirsbulck Guillaume at 4h54'12''
  • ▰ Bjerg Mikkel at 5h00'13''
  • ▰ Van Der Hoorn Taco at 5h02'34''
  • ▰ Lecroq J�r�my at 5h13'49''
  • ▰ Hirschi Marc at 5h15'09''
  • ▰ Juul Jensen Christopher at 5h15'26''
  • ▰ Turgis Anthony at 5h20'17''
  • ▰ Jakobsen Fabio at 5h23'38''
  • ▰ Frison Frederik at 5h30'19''
  • ▰ Janse Van Rensburg Reinardt at 5h31'25''
  • ▰ Groendahl Jansen Amund at 5h31'27''
  • ▰ Torres Barcelo Albert at 5h36'33''
  • ▰ Ewan Caleb at 5h40'42''

Red card

The alternative ranking

The ranking as it would be if we excluded all racers "pinned" in doping cases during their career.

  • ▰ Vingegaard Rasmussen Jonas
  • ▰ Pogacar Tadej
  • ▰ Thomas Geraint
  • ▰ Gaudu David
  • ▰ Vlasov Aleksander
  • ▰ Bardet Romain
  • ▰ Meintjes Louis
  • ▰ Lutsenko Alexey
  • ▰ Yates Adam
  • ▰ Madouas Valentin
  • ▰ Jungels Bob
  • ▰ Powless Neilson
  • ▰ Pinot Thibaut
  • ▰ Konrad Patrick
  • ▰ Pidcock Thomas
  • ▰ Kuss Sepp
  • ▰ Teuns Dylan
  • ▰ Mcnulty Brandon
  • ▰ Jorgenson Matteo
  • ▰ Van Aert Wout
  • ▰ Schultz Nicholas
  • ▰ Houle Hugo
  • ▰ Mollema Bauke
  • ▰ Uran Rigoberto
  • ▰ Verona Quintanilla Carlos
  • ▰ Leknessund Andreas
  • ▰ Muhlberger Gregor
  • ▰ Mart�nez Poveda Daniel Felipe
  • ▰ Velasco Simone
  • ▰ Van Baarle Dylan
  • ▰ K�ng Stefan
  • ▰ Sch�nberger Sebastian
  • ▰ Storer Michael
  • ▰ Benoot Tiesj
  • ▰ Gallopin Tony
  • ▰ Hamilton Chris
  • ▰ Izagirre Insausti Jon
  • ▰ Bettiol Alberto
  • ▰ Owsian Lukasz
  • ▰ Dombrowski Joseph Lloyd
  • ▰ Zimmermann Georg
  • ▰ Geschke Simon
  • ▰ Schachmann Maximilian
  • ▰ Goossens Kobe
  • ▰ Geniets Kevin
  • ▰ Castroviejo Nicolas Jonathan
  • ▰ Bouet Maxime
  • ▰ Pasqualon Andrea
  • ▰ Santos Simoes Oliveira Nelson Filipe
  • ▰ Grossschartner Felix
  • ▰ Thomas Benjamin
  • ▰ Wright Alfred
  • ▰ Politt Nils
  • ▰ Latour Pierre-roger
  • ▰ Boasson Hagen Edvald
  • ▰ Ciccone Giulio
  • ▰ Dillier Silvan
  • ▰ Skujins Toms
  • ▰ Duchesne Antoine
  • ▰ Perichon Pierre-luc
  • ▰ Tusveld Martijn
  • ▰ Dewulf Stan
  • ▰ Bonnamour Franck
  • ▰ Simmons Quinn
  • ▰ Burgaudeau Mathieu
  • ▰ Rolland Pierre
  • ▰ Swift Connor
  • ▰ Sbaragli Kristian
  • ▰ Tratnik Jan
  • ▰ Kron Andreas Lorentz
  • ▰ Louvel Matis
  • ▰ Laporte Christophe
  • ▰ Gilbert Philippe
  • ▰ Niv Guy
  • ▰ Matthews Michael
  • ▰ Neilands Krists
  • ▰ Barthe Cyril
  • ▰ Stuyven Jasper
  • ▰ Hofstetter Hugo
  • ▰ Bissegger Stefan
  • ▰ Perez Anthony
  • ▰ Capiot Amaury
  • ▰ Mohoric Matej
  • ▰ Haller Marco
  • ▰ Le Gac Olivier
  • ▰ Gougeard Alexis
  • ▰ Doull Owain
  • ▰ Cosnefroy Beno�t
  • ▰ Philipsen Jasper
  • ▰ Bystrom Sven Erik
  • ▰ Rutsch Jonas
  • ▰ Ganna Filippo
  • ▰ Cattaneo Mattia
  • ▰ Riabushenko Aliaksandr
  • ▰ Bagioli Andrea
  • ▰ Pedersen Mads
  • ▰ Dainese Alberto
  • ▰ Mezgec Luka
  • ▰ Kristoff Alexander
  • ▰ Mozzato Luca
  • ▰ Krieger Alexander
  • ▰ Degenkolb John
  • ▰ Rowe Luke
  • ▰ S�n�chal Florian
  • ▰ Vermeersch Florian
  • ▰ Van Poppel Danny
  • ▰ Planckaert Edward
  • ▰ Petit Adrien
  • ▰ Frolich Honore Mikkel
  • ▰ Lemoine Cyril
  • ▰ Gruzdev Dmitriy
  • ▰ Bodnar Maciej
  • ▰ Sagan Peter
  • ▰ Groenewegen Dylan
  • ▰ Gradek Kamil
  • ▰ Eekhoff Nils
  • ▰ Lampaert Yves
  • ▰ Van Moer Brent
  • ▰ Bauer Hans Jacob
  • ▰ Van Keirsbulck Guillaume
  • ▰ Bjerg Mikkel
  • ▰ Van Der Hoorn Taco
  • ▰ Lecroq J�r�my
  • ▰ Hirschi Marc
  • ▰ Juul Jensen Christopher
  • ▰ Turgis Anthony
  • ▰ Jakobsen Fabio
  • ▰ Frison Frederik
  • ▰ Janse Van Rensburg Reinardt
  • ▰ Groendahl Jansen Amund
  • ▰ Torres Barcelo Albert
  • ▰ Ewan Caleb

doping ciclismo tour de france

List of doping cases during the race

The list of participants.

The list of participants by team

UAE Team Emirates ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe UAE Team Emirates

25 years of existence, 34 cases, ie 1,36 per year

1. ▰ Pogacar Tadej 2. ▰ Bennett George 3. ▰ Bjerg Mikkel 4. ▰ Stake Laengen Vegard 5. ▰ Majka Rafal 6. ▰ Mcnulty Brandon 7. ▰ Soler Gimenez Marc 8. ▰ Hirschi Marc

Jumbo-Visma ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Jumbo-Visma

40 years of existence, 25 cases, ie 0,63 per year

11. ▰ Roglic Primoz 12. ▰ Benoot Tiesj 13. ▰ Kruijswijk Steven 14. ▰ Kuss Sepp 15. ▰ Laporte Christophe 16. ▰ Van Aert Wout 17. ▰ Van Hooydonck Nathan 18. ▰ Vingegaard Rasmussen Jonas

INEOS Grenadiers ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe INEOS Grenadiers

14 years of existence, 5 cases, ie 0,36 per year

21. ▰ Thomas Geraint 22. ▰ Mart�nez Poveda Daniel Felipe 23. ▰ Castroviejo Nicolas Jonathan 24. ▰ Ganna Filippo 25. ▰ Pidcock Thomas 26. ▰ Rowe Luke 27. ▰ Van Baarle Dylan 28. ▰ Yates Adam

AG2R Citro�n Team ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe AG2R Citron Team

32 years of existence, 18 cases, ie 0,56 per year

31. ▰ O'connor Ben Alexander 32. ▰ Bouchard Geoffrey 33. ▰ Cherel Micka�l 34. ▰ Cosnefroy Beno�t 35. ▰ Dewulf Stan 36. ▰ Jungels Bob 37. ▰ Naesen Oliver 38. ▰ Paret-peintre Aur�lien

BORA - hansgrohe ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe BORA - hansgrohe

14 years of existence, 1 case, ie 0,07 per year

41. ▰ Vlasov Aleksander 42. ▰ Grossschartner Felix 43. ▰ Haller Marco 44. ▰ K�mna Lennard 45. ▰ Konrad Patrick 46. ▰ Politt Nils 47. ▰ Schachmann Maximilian 48. ▰ Van Poppel Danny

Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl Team ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl Team

31 years of existence, 26 cases, ie 0,84 per year

51. ▰ Jakobsen Fabio 52. ▰ Asgreen Kasper 53. ▰ Bagioli Andrea 54. ▰ Cattaneo Mattia 55. ▰ Frolich Honore Mikkel 56. ▰ Lampaert Yves 57. ▰ Morkov Christiansen Michael 58. ▰ S�n�chal Florian

Movistar Team ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Movistar Team

44 years of existence, 29 cases, ie 0,66 per year

61. ▰ Mas Nicolau Enric 62. ▰ Erviti Ollo Imanol 63. ▰ Izagirre Insausti Gorka 64. ▰ Jorgenson Matteo 65. ▰ Muhlberger Gregor 66. ▰ Santos Simoes Oliveira Nelson Filipe 67. ▰ Torres Barcelo Albert 68. ▰ Verona Quintanilla Carlos

Cofidis ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Cofidis

28 years of existence, 21 cases, ie 0,75 per year

71. ▰ Martin Guillaume 72. ▰ Perichon Pierre-luc 73. ▰ Geschke Simon 74. ▰ Izagirre Insausti Jon 75. ▰ Lafay Victor 76. ▰ Perez Anthony 77. ▰ Thomas Benjamin 78. ▰ Walscheid Max

Bahrain - Victorious ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Bahrain - Victorious

7 years of existence, 2 cases, ie 0,29 per year

Red card

Groupama - FDJ ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Groupama - FDJ

27 years of existence, 13 cases, ie 0,48 per year

91. ▰ Gaudu David 92. ▰ Duchesne Antoine 93. ▰ Geniets Kevin 94. ▰ K�ng Stefan 95. ▰ Le Gac Olivier 96. ▰ Madouas Valentin 97. ▰ Pinot Thibaut 98. ▰ Storer Michael

Alpecin-Fenix ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Alpecin-Fenix

15 years of existence, 1 case, ie 0,07 per year

101. ▰ Van Der Poel Mathieu 102. ▰ Dillier Silvan 103. ▰ Gogl Michael 104. ▰ Krieger Alexander 105. ▰ Philipsen Jasper 106. ▰ Planckaert Edward 107. ▰ Sbaragli Kristian 108. ▰ Van Keirsbulck Guillaume

Team DSM ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Team DSM

19 years of existence, 3 cases, ie 0,16 per year

111. ▰ Bardet Romain 112. ▰ Dainese Alberto 113. ▰ Degenkolb John 114. ▰ Eekhoff Nils 115. ▰ Hamilton Chris 116. ▰ Leknessund Andreas 117. ▰ Tusveld Martijn 118. ▰ Vermaerke Kevin

Intermarch� - Wanty - Gobert Mat�riaux ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Intermarch - Wanty - Gobert Matriaux

19 years of existence, 4 cases, ie 0,21 per year

121. ▰ Kristoff Alexander 122. ▰ Bystrom Sven Erik 123. ▰ Goossens Kobe 124. ▰ Meintjes Louis 125. ▰ Pasqualon Andrea 126. ▰ Petit Adrien 127. ▰ Van Der Hoorn Taco 128. ▰ Zimmermann Georg

Astana Qazaqstan Team ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Astana Qazaqstan Team

17 years of existence, 19 cases, ie 1,12 per year

EF Education-EasyPost ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe EF Education-EasyPost

141. ▰ Uran Rigoberto 142. ▰ Guerreiro Ruben 143. ▰ Bettiol Alberto 144. ▰ Bissegger Stefan 145. ▰ Doull Owain 146. ▰ Cort Nielsen Magnus 147. ▰ Powless Neilson 148. ▰ Rutsch Jonas

Team Ark�a Samsic ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Team Arka Samsic

28 years of existence, 1 case, ie 0,04 per year

Lotto Soudal ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Lotto Soudal

40 years of existence, 14 cases, ie 0,35 per year

161. ▰ Ewan Caleb 162. ▰ Frison Frederik 163. ▰ Gilbert Philippe 164. ▰ Janse Van Rensburg Reinardt 165. ▰ Kron Andreas Lorentz 166. ▰ Van Moer Brent 167. ▰ Vermeersch Florian 168. ▰ Wellens Tim

Trek - Segafredo ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Trek - Segafredo

13 years of existence, 4 cases, ie 0,31 per year

171. ▰ Pedersen Mads 172. ▰ Ciccone Giulio 173. ▰ Gallopin Tony 174. ▰ Kirsch Alex 175. ▰ Mollema Bauke 176. ▰ Simmons Quinn 177. ▰ Skujins Toms 178. ▰ Stuyven Jasper

TotalEnergies ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe TotalEnergies

24 years of existence, 6 cases, ie 0,25 per year

181. ▰ Sagan Peter 182. ▰ Boasson Hagen Edvald 183. ▰ Bodnar Maciej 184. ▰ Burgaudeau Mathieu 185. ▰ Latour Pierre-roger 186. ▰ Oss Daniel 187. ▰ Turgis Anthony 188. ▰ Vuillermoz Alexis

Israel - Premier Tech ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Israel - Premier Tech

9 years of existence, 1 case, ie 0,11 per year

Yellow card

Team BikeExchange - Jayco ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe Team BikeExchange - Jayco

12 years of existence, 4 cases, ie 0,33 per year

201. ▰ Matthews Michael 202. ▰ Bauer Hans Jacob 203. ▰ Durbridge Luke 204. ▰ Groenewegen Dylan 205. ▰ Groendahl Jansen Amund 206. ▰ Juul Jensen Christopher 207. ▰ Mezgec Luka 208. ▰ Schultz Nicholas

B&B Hotels - KTM ◆

Classement ICCD de l'quipe B&B Hotels - KTM

5 years of existence, 0 cases, ie 0 per year

211. ▰ Bonnamour Franck 212. ▰ Barthe Cyril 213. ▰ Gougeard Alexis 214. ▰ Lecroq J�r�my 215. ▰ Lemoine Cyril 216. ▰ Mozzato Luca 217. ▰ Rolland Pierre 218. ▰ Sch�nberger Sebastian

Revue de presse du Tour de France 2022

  • 28/10/2023 - Un an apr�s son contr�le positif au Tramadol, Nairo Quintana retourne chez Movistar
  • 03/11/2022 - Le TAS rejette l'appel de Nairo Quintana apr�s sa�disqualification du Tour de France
  • 01/10/2022 - Ark�a-Samsic�: Quintana s�en va�!
  • 01/09/2022 - Nairo Quintana conteste sa disqualification devant le TAS
  • 22/08/2022 - Nairo Quintana : encore une affaire confuse
  • 18/08/2022 - Nairo Quintana annonce son retrait du Tour d'Espagne après sa disqualification sur la Grande Boucle
  • 17/08/2022 - Accus� de dopage, Quintana contre-attaque
  • 17/08/2022 - Contr�l� positif au tramadol, Nairo Quintana disqualifi� par l�UCI
  • 23/07/2022 - "Une question de merde", "On est compl�tement propres" : van Aert et Vingegaard �cartent les rumeurs de dopage
  • 29/06/2022 - Comment le Tour de France lutte contre les moteurs dans les v�los

Revue de presse du Tour de France 2022 - #LeTourdAntoine

  • 26/07/2022 - Revue de presse - La mutation de Vingegaard chez Jumbo
  • 23/07/2022 - Plus vite, plus haut, plus fort - ensemble, vent dans le dos et avec des v�los � rapides �
  • 21/07/2022 - La montagne, r�v�lateur du NORMAL et du NOTNORMAL
  • 19/07/2022 - Obs�quieuse t�l�vision complice
  • 17/07/2022 - Pyr�n�es 2022 : Pogastrong-Vingegaard vont-ils sprinter plus fort que Contador-Rasmussen en 2007 dans les cols ?
  • 16/07/2022 - �a triche encore. �a va Bardet ?
  • 14/07/2022 - Uberisation et Lalannisation au Tour de France
  • 12/07/2022 - Tous coupables ?
  • 10/07/2022 - Du 2.0 au 3.0
  • 09/07/2022 - � Tadej m�a tuer ? �
  • 07/07/2022 - � OK BOOMER �
  • 05/07/2022 - � Porter ses c... �
  • 02/07/2022 - ICCD : Indice de Confiance - Saison 2022
  • 01/07/2022 - Comme pr�vu
  • The real numbers of doping (fr)


  • The doping cases on the Tour de France (fr)

doping ciclismo tour de france

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How doping works in cycling, explained by a physiologist and former pro rider

We talked to an expert to learn more about how today’s cyclists cheat — from EPO, to salbutamol, to ... uh ... poop doping.

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Le Tour de France 2017 - Stage Twenty One

Athletes cheat. And one of the best ways to cheat is to take banned substances to give your body a boost.

And there’s no sport and sporting event so inextricably linked to cheating as cycling and the Tour de France . Lance Armstrong is the face of cycling’s doping problem, but in truth the sport was cheating long before Armstrong, and in all sorts of creative ways . That legacy will undoubtedly continue long into the future. Don’t be surprised if you start hearing the term “poop doping” on a regular basis someday.

As for the present, well, you may have heard of Chris Froome, a man approaching Armstrong-ian levels of yellow jersey success who has also become embroiled in a doping scandal. Froome was found with twice the permitted level of salbutamol, an asthma medication, in his system during last year’s Vuelta a España, and was briefly banned from the Tour before being cleared five days before the start of the race .

The point being, cheating in sports is not going away any time soon, nor is it getting any easier to comprehend. To help explain, SB Nation spoke to Dr. Stacy Sims, an environmental exercise physiologist and nutrition scientist at the University of Waikato in New Zealand. Sims was a pro women’s cyclist who later went on to work with men’s pro cycling teams like Saxo and Dimension Data during the Tour de France, advising team chef Hannah Grant on rider nutrition.

Sims understands cyclists’ bodies perhaps as well as anyone can. She answered our questions cycling’s love affair with erythropoietin (better known as EPO), how asthma medication would help a rider — and, yes, if poop doping is really a thing.

EPO is the big thing. What advantage does EPO give you? And how does EPO work?

Dr. Stacy Sims: EPO is the hormone that is released in the kidney when you have a low partial pressure of oxygen. And you can naturally produce it by doing some dehydrated activity in the heat, or you go to altitude, and it’s your body’s drive to need more red cells, because red cells are responsible for picking up and delivering oxygen. So the idea behind taking EPO is to increase that red blood cell production, because with increased red cells, you have increased oxygen carrying capacity, and increased oxygen delivery capacity.

The idea behind lots of people using it is that it is a really fast way for red cell development. But the flip side to that is, if you get too many red cells in your blood and your blood becomes too viscous, then it actually can’t move through the body, which is why they have that cutoff of 50 [percent volume red blood cells to total blood volume].

So your hemoglobin and your hematocrit levels are tightly monitored. We look more at your hematocrit, because it’s your red cell count. And when it starts approaching that 50 mark, and 50 and beyond, that’s a tipping point for someone doping, and it is a health hazard, because if you get too much of that hematocrit, your blood just doesn’t go where it needs to go and it can’t function properly.

Is it possible to get past that 50 mark naturally? Has there ever been anyone who has been able to do that naturally?

SS: It depends on when you test them. If you test someone when they’re dehydrated, like after a max test or something, and they’re sitting around 47 to 48, then you’ll see that they’re 52 because they’ve lost a lot of the water out of their blood, so their blood is concentrated.

There are some anomalies. Cyclists, again, it’s really hard to tease out because of the incidence of doping. I would love to be able to have a clean team and really, as much as people say they are, you have your doubts. But it is possible.

It has an aspect of living in altitude, and having a high testosterone level. Then your body will compensate and produce more red cells just because it needs that for the oxygen, and the testosterone is a drive for producing EPO.

In what ways does doping throw off long-term studies on grand tour riders? And are riders who use EPO likely to have long-term problems?

SS: I think if they use EPO, then they will. Just from the aspect of having a really high hematocrit level, and you have to look at cardiovascular incidences of “sticky cells,” so there’s a higher amount of stuff in the blood — so you have your red cells, and your platelets, and fractions of cells — and if they are under this constant load of exercise and high sugar, then their vessels aren’t as compliant. So longer term, you can have some disorder with regards to vessel compliancy, so they become very stiff, they don’t have as much nitric oxide response, so their blood pressure is off and they’re dealing with high blood pressure.

You can end up with some vascular disease. So the longer term consequence of having that artificially high production of red cells can have a huge impact on overall cardiovascular and total vascular health.

Chris Froome was caught last September with excess Salbutamol in his system. That was new to me. How does excess asthmas medication help a rider?

SS: It is a bronchial dilator. I’ll take it back a step — the whole buzz about beet juice being a vasodilator, increasing blood circulation to the muscles without as much work, it’s the same idea of using clenbuterol or another type of asthma inhaler, where it increases the surface space of the bronchials so you have more oxygen transfer. So effectively with every breath, you can intake and transfer more oxygen to the cells. So again, it’s all about that oxygen delivery.

Is this something that has been common in cycling for a long time? Why don’t we see this happen more?

SS: I think a lot of people use the TUE [Therapeutic Use Exemption] as an excuse. Especially undercards of testosterone or asthma medication, people start to really question the harder drugs of like growth hormone and that kind of stuff. The common medications that are prescribed that can also be ergogenic, if you have a TUE, then it’s almost a carte blanche to use it regardless.

And I think that can be kind of why people are not necessarily bringing it to the table, so to speak. Because there are some people who legitimately need asthma inhalers, and there are some people who have Low T. Low T can be mitigated with energy availability and nutrient timing, and making sure you are on par with your intake, people don’t want to take the time to do it, they’d rather just take the drug.

The same with pseudoephedrine and ephedrine, that was taken off [the permitted substance list] because it was such a powerful stimulant, and such a powerful vasodilator. People can get it over the counter in cold medications, and they’re like, ‘Woah, this is such a significant ergogenic aid, we need to take it off.’ So there are some things that come up.

That’s where this health and performance line comes into play, because you have physicians who are like, ‘We need it for health,’ and then you have people who are monitoring for performance going, ‘Well, actually it enhances performance, are you sure?’ But they can’t necessarily question the physician.

Can I get your opinion on poop doping, and have you been looking into that at all?

SS: Into what doping?

Poop doping. There was a researcher who looked at the gut biomes of professional road racers and compared them to amateur cyclists and found that the best riders had this certain bacteria in their gut, and she posited that you could —

SS: — essentially change your gut microbiome and dope to — yeah.

I mean, in theory it seems like it would work. But in practice, there are so many other factors. We put it kinda also in the epigenetic aspect where you can take in certain things and cause a genetic expression, either over or under expression, and that may or may not enhance performance. This is the same with gut microbiome. I mean, seven days of one type of exposure will completely change a microbiome. So not only do they have to take the probiotics or the actual bacteria that mimics what the pro rider has, they also have to live the lifestyle, they have to be exposed to the same bacteria every day that’s on the counters and the sinks. They have to be exposed to the same food that’s grown in the same soil.

Again, in theory, probably. But in practice, I think it’s much more complex than what she’s talking about.

So you think it’s probably unlikely that someone riding the Tour de France this year is poop doping.

SS: [Laughs] Right.

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‘Yes, I doped’ - Jan Ullrich makes full doping confession

1997 Tour de France winner believes he deserves to keep his victory

Jan Ullrich in the yellow jersey at the 1997 Tour de France

Jan Ullrich has finally fully confessed to doping, including before he won the 1997 Tour de France, revealing how he opted for the lowest risk when choosing a blood doping programme with the infamous Dr. Eufemiano Fuentes. 

“Yes, I doped,” Ullrich said to Stern and other German media after a pre-release screening of the four-part documentary 'Der Gejagte' ('The Hunted'), which will be released on Amazon Prime in Germany from November 28.  

Ullrich's victory in the 1997 Tour de France made him the poster boy for a boom in German cycling and he remains the only German to ever have won the sport's biggest race. 

He became Lance Armstrong's biggest rival in the sport after the Texan returned to racing following treatment for testicular cancer, but he never managed to beat Armstrong or win the Tour again, finishing second in 1998, 2000, 2001 and 2003.

Ullrich’s career ended abruptly when he was pulled from the 2006 Tour before the start in Strasbourg after serious accusations of blood doping emerged.  

Jan Ullrich: I was just like Marco Pantani… nearly dead 'I took cocaine, drank whisky like water and was close to death' – Jan Ullrich opens up in documentary

Jan Ullrich opens up about doping before documentary about his traumatic life and career

Ullrich confessed to working with Dr. Fuentes back in 2013 and has more recently indicated he doped and tried to justify why. 

Now he has openly confessed to doping just before the release of the documentary, which comes after the two years of filming and research. The process was part of Ullrich's period of introspection after a mental and physical breakdown in 2018, fuelled by whisky and cocaine, almost killed him. 

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The documentary will initially be available in Germany, Austria and Switzerland but the production company behind it is negotiating with other territories. 

During the filming of the documentary, Ullrich visited Marco Pantani’s home town of Cesenatico and met his parents, learning of the tragedy of Pantani’s death after several years of cocaine use and mental illness. Pantani’s mother attended the pre-release showing of the documentary in Munich on Wednesday, along with Ivan Basso and Ullrich's former directeurs sportifs at Team Telekom, Rudy Pevenage and Olaf Ludwig.

“It was a huge shock for me at the time,” Ullrich said of Pantani's death in a long interview with Armstrong published in Germany newspaper Zeit .  

Armstrong  travelled to Europe to help Ullrich when he was at his lowest in 2018 and the two fierce rivals are now good friends.

“His mum was incredibly touched when I stood in front of her, there is a real connection. Even if it sounds trite: in a way we are like one big family,” Ullrich said of Pantani. 

Early this week Ullrich explained that he refused to confess to doping despite the growing evidence because he didn’t want to “drag a lot of people down with me into the abyss.” 

Looking fatigued after making a complete confession to different German media on Wednesday evening, Ullrich now regrets not confessing sooner. 

"If I had told my story, I would have had many wonderful years. But I didn't have the courage. Now it feels good to admit my guilt," he told the dpa news agency and other German media.     

"Almost everyone took performance-enhancing substances back then. I didn't take anything that the others didn't take. For me, cheating starts when I gain an advantage. That wasn't the case. I wanted to ensure equal opportunities.

“I was guilty and now I feel guilty. I can say with all my heart that I did not want to deceive anyone. I didn't want to get ahead of the other riders.

"It was just a different time then. Cycling had a system and I ended up in that. For me it was important to start the races with equal opportunities."

Ullrich won the amateur world title at just 19 in Oslo in 1993, when future rival Armstrong won the professional men’s road race at just 21. 

Ullrich now reveals he started doping soon afterwards, when he turned professional with T-Mobile.  

“I came into contact with it in 1995/1996, before the Tour de France . At the time it was explained to me in a plausible way. I was not afraid. It was so obvious to me at the time,” he admitted.

“I was young and naive and came into an existing system. And that was made so palatable and indispensable to me that I decided to do it. My career would have been over if I hadn’t done it. I never felt like a criminal."

Lance Armstrong’s seven Tour de France were officially removed from the record book after he was banned for doping by USADA but Ullrich’s former teammate Bjarne Riis is still officially the 1996 winner after his doping confession. 

Ullirich believes he deserves to still be considered a Tour de France winner, despite now confessing to doping even before his 1997 victory.   

“I know what I have achieved. Personally, I think I deserve the title. Others have to decide that. But in my heart I am a Tour de France winner,” he said .

When a blood haematocrit threshold and then an anti-doping test for EPO were introduced, Ullrich, like some of his biggest, most daring rivals, switched to blood doping. 

"I wanted to win and build on my successes. I had a new team at the time and Dr. Fuentes was recommended to me - that's how I ended up there," he revealed, unafraid of the medical consequences, yet also concerned about taking too many risks. 

“Everything was medically controlled. Ultimately, it was my own blood that I had taken, something natural and under medical supervision, I wasn't afraid. 

“Fuentes asked me: Which traffic light do you want to go through? The green, the yellow or the red? It was immediately clear to me - these are the risk levels. I said: always green. I don’t even want to know what the other levels are.”

The Ullrich documentary will be released on November 28, and the German will turn 50 on December 2. He has slowly rebuilt his life since his problems in 2018, with cycling and his children playing a major role in his return to health and stability. 

His confession to doping is a final step toward full personal redemption.   

“I am healthy, I have both feet back in life and have found my centre,” he said. “Life has become easier.” 

Ullrich’s children have started cycling and racing themselves, apparently with some of the talent of their father. He hopes to even find a role in the sport, if is forgiven for his doping, especially in Germany, where a black and white stance to cheating, and especially to doping in cycling, still runs strong.    

"If I had the opportunity, I would take the chance because I'm a master in this field and I still feel good," Ullrich said. "I simply love this sport and it will shape me throughout my life."

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Stephen Farrand

Stephen is the most experienced member of the Cyclingnews team, having reported on professional cycling since 1994. He has been Head of News at Cyclingnews since 2022, before which he held the position of European editor since 2012 and previously worked for Reuters , Shift Active Media , and CyclingWeekly , among other publications.

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Crazy Stat Shows Just How Common Doping Was In Cycling When Lance Armstrong Was Winning The Tour de France

Even after Lance Armstrong finally came clean and was banned from cycling for life, many still defend the (unofficial) 7-time Tour de France champion.

The biggest argument for Armstrong is the belief that all riders were doping.

We have known for a while now that a lot of cyclists were doping. A recent breakdown of the extent of the "EPO Era" (named for the most common drug, Erythropoietin) shows the "everybody was doing it" defense may not be that far off.

Teddy Cutler of recently took a an excellent and detailed look at all the top cyclists from 1998 through 2013 and whether or not they have ever been linked to blood doping or have links to doping or a doctor linked to blood doping.

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During this 16-year period, 12 Tour de France races were won by cyclists who were confirmed dopers. In addition, of the 81 different riders who finished in the top-10 of the Tour de France during this period, 65% have been caught doping, admitted to blood doping, or have strong associations to doping and are suspected cheaters.

More importantly for Lance Armstrong, during the 7-year window when he won every Tour de France (1999-2005), 87% of the top-10 finishers (61 of 70) were confirmed dopers or suspected of doping.

Of those, 48 (69%) were confirmed, with 39 having been suspended at some point in their career.

None of that excuses Armstrong's behavior, especially outside of the races . But it is clear Armstrong wasn't alone. He was just better at it than anybody else.

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Chris Froome reveals details of how and why he was cleared in anti-doping investigation

Defence based on statistical model showing likelihood of false positives

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Chris Froome on stage six of the Giro d'Italia

Chris Froome has revealed more details of the successful defence that saw the anti-doping investigation into him dismissed by WADA and the UCI less than a week ahead of the Tour de France .

Speaking to The Times , Froome spoke about the moment he received the official notification that the case against him had been dropped.

"These were severe allegations. For an athlete it doesn’t get much worse. This was a nightmare scenario for any clean athlete. It was challenging to a level I’ve never experienced before," Froome said.

"It’s been a long process getting to this point but out with Wout [Poels] this morning, our last ride before leaving for the start of the Tour, my phone buzzing off the hook with messages from friends, colleagues, people I’ve known right back to school, I’ve been inundated with people saying they knew the truth would come out eventually and it did."

>>> 'Testing hasn't become irrelevant': WADA science director defends anti-doping process after Froome case

According to The Times , Froome's successful defence was based on demonstrating the likelihood of delivering a false positive for someone taking regular asthma medication.

Legal and scientific teams looked at the varying levels of excretion of salbutamol from Froome's other urine samples during the Vuelta, and used this to build a statistical model to show the chances of a false positive. This model was then submitted to the UCI which carried out its own tests, discovering that the chances of the current test delivering a false positive was "alarmingly high".

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Froome's evidence also included submissions from the scientist responsible setting the World Anti-Doping Agency's limit for salbutamol dosage and the level at which an anti-doping investigation is triggered.

Watch: Tour de France 2018 preview

As well as explaining his relief at receiving the news that the case against him had been dropped, Froome also revealed the moment that he got the phone call from the UCI at the World Championships in Bergen informing him of the investigation.

"It was the phone call I never thought I would ever receive," the 33-year-old said. "Tim Kerrison was walking around and I told him, ‘I can’t believe what I just heard.’

"You do everything right then this nightmare. I actually felt dizzy. I climbed off and immediately just started googling to learn what I could about salbutamol, about thresholds."

>>> Tour de France boss: 'We needed an answer on the Froome case, but it's a pity it came so late'

Froome will now line up for the start of the 2018 Tour de France free from the pressure of having an anti-doping investigation hanging over his head.

On Tuesday Team Sky announced the seven riders who will support Froome in his question to win a fifth Tour de France title, with a strong team of domestiques including Geraint Thomas, Wout Poels, and Michal Kwiatkowski.

The Tour de France starts on Saturday with a 201km stage from Noirmoutier-en-l'Île to Fontenay-le-Comte, which Froome will be hoping to get through without and trouble.

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Henry Robertshaw began his time at Cycling Weekly working with the tech team, writing reviews, buying guides and appearing in videos advising on how to dress for the seasons. He later moved over to the news team, where his work focused on the professional peloton as well as legislation and provision for cycling. He's since moved his career in a new direction, with a role at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

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Tour de France Winner Chris Froome Failed Doping Test

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By Victor Mather

  • Dec. 13, 2017

Chris Froome, a four-time winner of the Tour de France, including its last three editions, tested positive for excessive levels of an asthma drug last fall.

In a urine test taken at the Vuelta a España in September, Froome, of Britain, was found to have double the allowable level of the drug, Salbutamol. Froome won the race.

“It is well known that I have asthma and I know exactly what the rules are,” Froome said in a statement. “I use an inhaler to manage my symptoms (always within the permissible limits) and I know for sure that I will be tested every day I wear the race leader’s jersey.

“My asthma got worse at the Vuelta so I followed the team doctor’s advice to increase my Salbutamol dosage. As always, I took the greatest care to ensure that I did not use more than the permissible dose.

“I take my leadership position in my sport very seriously. The U.C.I. is absolutely right to examine test results and, together with the team, I will provide whatever information it requires.”

The maximum permissible dosage is 16 puffs of salbutamol from an inhaler in a 24-hour period, The Guardian reported . Team Sky, Froome’s team, suggested that the drug could metabolize in unusual ways, resulting in elevated levels.

The U.C.I., the sport’s governing body, said a B sample analysis had confirmed the positive test. But it said it would not act to discipline Froome until further study of the samples was completed.

Froome had planned to ride in the Giro d’Italia in the spring in a bid to hold the titles of all three major Tours — Spain, Italy and France — simultaneously. He also planned to pursue a record-tying fifth Tour title in July.

Froome, 32, joins a long list of cycling champions who have run into trouble over doping. Most famously, Lance Armstrong was stripped of his seven Tour titles over drug use. Alberto Contador lost the 2010 title and Floyd Landis the 2006 championship. Many of the other winners, starting the late 1990s, including Marco Pantani, Jan Ullrich and Bjarne Riis, also have been caught up in doping scandals.

An earlier version of this article misstated the month the Tour de France takes place. It is July, not August.

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Doping e frodi tecnologiche

Doping e frodi tecnologiche. Ecco cosa succederà al Tour de France

L’UCI ha svelato oggi il programma di lotta al doping e alle frodi tecnologiche che applicherà durante il Tour de France 2023.

Il programma antidoping sarà guidato dall’International Testing Agency (ITA), l’organizzazione a cui l’UCI ha delegato nel 2021 le attività operative per garantire un ciclismo pulito. ITA lavorerà con tutte le parti interessate, comprese le autorità francesi , per proteggere l’integrità di uno degli eventi ciclistici più prestigiosi al mondo.

Doping e frodi tecnologiche

In questo quadro l’ITA è responsabile della strategia antidoping complessiva, che include la definizione di un piano di controllo preciso e mirato. Questo piano sarà applicato sulla base di una valutazione del rischio che tenga conto di un’ampia varietà di fattori e sarà adattato in tempo reale se le circostanze o nuove informazioni renderanno necessari adeguamenti. Il piano di test tiene conto anche di eventuali informazioni rilevanti ottenute attraverso l’esame dei passaporti biologici degli atleti in gara o raccolte dal Dipartimento di intelligence e investigazione dell’ITA.

Ciò significa, in pratica, che si andrà ben oltre i test di routine, ormai praticamente inutili. I controlli antidoping effettuati nell’ambito del Tour de France saranno mirati e svolti durante le tre settimane di gara, e non solo al traguardo. Allo stesso modo, in ogni tappa, verranno testati la maglia gialla e il vincitore della giornata. Inoltre, tutti gli atleti saranno già controllati prima dell’inizio dell’evento come parte del loro follow-up medico.  

Doping e frodi tecnologiche

Al termine della gara l’ITA effettuerà una selezione di campioni che verranno conservati per potenziali scopi di rianalisi nei prossimi 10 anni. Quest’ultima è una scelta che farà storcere la bocca a qualcuno, ma che può funzionare come potente deterrente.

L’UCI sottolinea che il 2023 ha visto un notevole incremento delle risorse destinate al programma antidoping, con un aumento progressivo del budget del 35% entro la fine del 2024. Questo finanziamento sostiene principalmente settori quali l’intelligence e le indagini, i controlli, la ricerca scientifica, l’analisi dei dati, la conservazione a lungo termine dei campioni e la rianalisi degli stessi.  

Doping e frodi tecnologiche

UCI e lotta alle frodi tecnologiche

Negli ultimi anni, più che di doping si è fatto un gran parlare di doping tecnologico. Per questo l’UCI ha investito parecchi soldi anche in questo settore.

Per quanto riguarda la lotta alle frodi tecnologiche, durante il Tour de France i controlli per rilevare la presenza di motorini o altri sistemi nascosti nel telaio e in altri componenti delle biciclette saranno effettuati utilizzando tre strumenti: tablet a scansione magnetica , una cabina mobile a raggi X e dispositivi portatili che utilizzano tecnologie di trasmissione e retrodiffusione.

Doping e frodi tecnologiche

Prima di ogni frazione un Commissario UCI sarà presente sugli autobus delle squadre per controllare tutte le biciclette utilizzate all’inizio della tappa. Questi controlli saranno effettuati utilizzando tablet a scansione magnetica, ma ovviamente non possono prevenire un eventuale cambio di bici in corsa.

Per questo, dopo ogni tappa, verranno effettuati ulteriori controlli sulle bici utilizzate:

  • dal vincitore della tappa;
  • dai corridori che indossano le maglie di leader (gialla, verde, a pois e bianca);
  • da tre o quattro corridori scelti a caso, oltre che da atleti che hanno destato sospetti, ad esempio a seguito del controllo effettuato prima della tappa, di un numero anomalo di cambi bici (in questo caso possono essere controllate anche le bici trasportate in ammiraglia) o altri incidenti rilevati dall’UCI Video Commissioner.

Doping e frodi tecnologiche

Questi controlli post tappa saranno effettuati utilizzando l’unità mobile a raggi X o dispositivi portatili che utilizzano la tecnologia backscatter . Se necessario, qualsiasi bicicletta verrà smontata.

Subito dopo il traguardo le biciclette soggette ai controlli post-tappa verranno rapidamente etichettate, consentendo di completare le procedure di controllo in pochi minuti. Visto che non stiamo parlando di applicazioni di uso comune, l’UCI ricorda brevemente il funzionamento di questi strumenti.

La tecnologia mobile a raggi X consente di ottenere un’immagine radiografica ad alta risoluzione di una bicicletta completa in soli cinque minuti.  Qui sotto un video che mostra come funziona:

La tecnologia di backscatter fornisce istantaneamente immagini ad alta risoluzione dell’interno delle sezioni in esame che possono essere trasmesse, da remoto, direttamente ai Commissari UCI.

L’UCI ci tiene a ricordare che i controlli per prevenire le frodi tecnologiche non riguardano solo il Tour de France,   ma vengono effettuati sulle biciclette in tutte le manifestazioni dell’UCI World Tour, nonché ai Campionati del mondo di ciclismo su strada, ai Campionati del mondo di paraciclismo, nelle gare dell’UCI Women’s World Tour e ai giochi Olimpici. I test vengono effettuati anche durante i Campionati Mondiali UCI di mountain bike, ciclocross e ciclismo su pista, nonché durante la Coppa del Mondo UCI Cyclocross.  

Durante il Tour de France dello scorso anno sono stati effettuati in totale 934 controlli sulle biciclette e non sono stati rilevati casi di frode tecnologica.

doping ciclismo tour de france

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Permetteteci una riflessione….

Fino a qui abbiamo parlato di tecnologie, di strategie e di finanziamenti crescenti contro il doping. Ben vengano tutte le azioni volte a garantire un ciclismo pulito. Si dice che il doping sia sempre un passo avanti rispetto all’antidoping, ma un tale spiegamento di forze ci dà almeno la speranza di vedere prestazioni e risultati credibili.

Tuttavia un pensiero ci gira per la testa. Perché c’è ancora così tanto bisogno di far conoscere al mondo quali sono le strategie messe in pratica contro il doping e le frodi tecnologiche nel ciclismo? Perché non si riesce ad affrancare il nostro sport dalla parola doping? Non c’è un altro modo per veicolare l’immagine del ciclismo come sport bello, pulito, genuino? Perché una parte di tutti questi fondi non viene investita nella formazione di atleti e preparatori e magari nella diffusione di una maggiore cultura sportiva nei ragazzini (non necessariamente ciclisti)? Prevenire è meglio che curare, ma spesso ce lo dimentichiamo…

doping ciclismo tour de france

E’ un argomento delicato, lo sappiamo. Ma a volte qualche riflessione è d’obbligo per capire se stiamo davvero sulla strada giusta. Fateci sapere per mail o nei commenti al post Facebook qui sotto cosa ne pensate in merito…

Per maggiori informazioni:


Le colpe del sistema ciclismo: quando non sempre si alza il livello, la decisione uci sui cerchi hookless: ecco le prime linee guida…, l’uci apre un’indagine sui caschi da cronometro, ultimi articoli, ricordate il casco di bettiol alla milano-torino oggi ne sappiamo qualcosa in più….



Come calcolare l’altezza sella della bici da corsa in modo corretto, bici gravel per iniziare: 20 modelli validi con prezzo contenuto, 25 bici con buon prezzo e alta qualità: ecco i nostri..., categorie popolari.

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  • v.75(6); 2013 Jun

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Erythropoietin doping in cycling: lack of evidence for efficacy and a negative risk–benefit

Jules a a c heuberger.

1 Biopharmaceutical Sciences, Leiden University, Leiden

Joost M Cohen Tervaert

Femke m l schepers, adriaan d b vliegenthart, joris i rotmans.

2 Department of Nephrology, Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden

Johannes M A Daniels

3 Department of Pulmonary Diseases, VU University Medical Centre, Amsterdam

Jacobus Burggraaf

4 Leiden Amsterdam Centre for Drug Research, Leiden

Adam F Cohen

5 Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, The Netherlands

Imagine a medicine that is expected to have very limited effects based upon knowledge of its pharmacology and (patho)physiology and that is studied in the wrong population, with low-quality studies that use a surrogate end-point that relates to the clinical end-point in a partial manner at most. Such a medicine would surely not be recommended. The use of recombinant human erythropoietin (rHuEPO) to enhance performance in cycling is very common. A qualitative systematic review of the available literature was performed to examine the evidence for the ergogenic properties of this drug, which is normally used to treat anaemia in chronic renal failure patients. The results of this literature search show that there is no scientific basis from which to conclude that rHuEPO has performance-enhancing properties in elite cyclists. The reported studies have many shortcomings regarding translation of the results to professional cycling endurance performance. Additionally, the possibly harmful side-effects have not been adequately researched for this population but appear to be worrying, at least. The use of rHuEPO in cycling is rife but scientifically unsupported by evidence, and its use in sports is medical malpractice. What its use would have been, if the involved team physicians had been trained in clinical pharmacology and had investigated this properly, remains a matter of speculation. A single well-controlled trial in athletes in real-life circumstances would give a better indication of the real advantages and risk factors of rHuEPO use, but it would be an oversimplification to suggest that this would eradicate its use.

Sport is big business

The summer of 2012 was an intensive summer of sport. From all these events, it is clear that sport plays a very important role in our society, because it brings people together, gives pleasure, keeps people healthy and can bring professional athletes fame and honour.

Sport has grown to be so important that large amounts of money are now involved, and the will and pressure to win have steadily increased. Cheating has therefore become a threat to all sports, with some sports being more susceptible to it than others. Cheating by use of medicines has understandably taken place outside the realm of clinical pharmacology and evidence-based medicine. We question whether this is desirable, because uncontrolled use of a substance involves risks for the users, irrespective of such a substance being used legally or illegally.

In this review, we focus on the use of recombinant human erythropoietin (rHuEPO) in cycling, a sport that has had many reports of cheating, culminating in the last decade, with many suspicions and suspensions. We will address the question of whether the currently available evidence justifies the widespread use of this substance. Many of the major champions in cycling have been associated with, or suspended for, use of (blood) doping. In the Tour de France of 1998, the entire Festina team, as well as the TVM team, was taken out of the race on suspicion of rHuEPO use. This Tour was later given the name ‘Tour du Dopage’, and many confessions of systematic doping (i.e. rHuEPO) use throughout the peloton were given. In spite of this, later champions in the Tour de France, Giro d'Italia and Vuelta a España have also been suspended because of proof of blood doping, but the code of silence, also called ‘omerta’, was never broken. Seven years after the last of seven consecutive Tour de France wins, one of the most successful road cyclists ever, Lance Armstrong, has been suspended for life by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) on charges of doping (e.g. rHuEPO) use and trafficking, in the biggest doping case ever, backed by confessions of many of his teammates 1 .

Knowledge of both the effects and the side-effects of rHuEPO in this population is essential, especially with so many misconceptions among the people involved. Firstly, if the effects are not pronounced, the motives for misuse will be less strong. Secondly, even if the effects are pronounced, knowledge of the potentially dangerous side-effects needs to be communicated to the cyclists, who are likely to be under severe pressure to use performance-enhancing agents, together with the coaches and physicians supervising them 1 .

Physiology of erythropoietin

Erythropoietin (EPO) is a (glyco)protein that is mainly involved in erythropoiesis, the (re-)generation of erythrocytes, or red blood cells. Red blood cells are cells without a nucleus that transport oxygen through the blood. Owing to a lack of ability to repair themselves without a nucleus and other cellular machinery, erythrocytes have a lifespan of approximately 120 days in the circulation and after that need to be replaced 2 . The spleen removes the old erythrocytes (2–3 million every second) and, to keep the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood at a steady level, constant erythropoiesis is necessary 2 . Erythropoiesis starts in the bone marrow, where red blood cells originate from pluripotent stem cells 3 . These stem cells continuously make identical copies of themselves and, in that way, create progenitor cells for, among others, erythrocytic cells 3 . These cells go through different stages, one of which is the burst-forming unit-erythroid. This cell type matures into a colony-forming unit-erythroid (CFU-E), which in turn forms the proerythroblast, which divides four times into 16 reticulocytes, later developing into mature red blood cells 3 .

The first report of a factor influencing this red blood cell production was by Carnot and DeFlandre 4 , who called it ‘hemopoietine’. This factor, now called erythropoietin, is a hormone of 165 amino acids with four glycosylation sites, a molecular weight of 30 400 and a carbohydrate content of 40% 5 , 6 . In normal (nonhypoxic) conditions, the concentration of EPO in blood is relatively constant at approximately 5 pmol l −1 , essential to stimulate cells in the bone marrow to produce new erythrocytes, compensating for the physiological demise of erythrocytes 3 . This level is equal to ∼20 mU ml −1 when EPO is quantified as ‘international units’ (IU), assuming a specific activity of 130 000 IU mg −1 . The cells that are the main target for the hormone are the CFU-Es and proerythroblasts, containing the highest density of erythropoietin receptors (EpoRs) 7 . The main effect of EPO is on CFU-Es, because it promotes survival of these cells 8 . One of the pathways involved in this process, activated by EPO, is the cell proliferation pathway of Ras/mitogen-activated protein kinase 9 , 10 . After binding of EPO to its receptor, dimerization of two EpoR molecules occurs, and this starts the intracellular signalling that leads to proliferation of CFU-Es 11 , 12 .

Production and metabolism

The kidneys are the main EPO-producing organs in humans 13 , 14 , where peritubular interstitial cells govern its production 15 , 16 , which is highly regulated. Baseline EPO levels can increase up to 1000-fold in low blood oxygen content, for example in severe anaemia 3 . Production of EPO is highly dependent on blood oxygen tension, with hypoxia increasing EPO production, irrespective of the cause of reduced tissue oxygen supply 3 . There is a latency of approximately 1.5–2 h before EPO levels start to increase in a linear manner, reflecting the time of signal transduction and hormone synthesis and secretion. Peak EPO concentrations after hypoxia are reached within 48 h, with the concentration being dependent on the severity of hypoxia 3 . However, only moderately elevated serum concentrations of EPO seem to be sufficient to maintain an increased rate of erythropoiesis 17 .

The proposed oxygen-sensing mechanism that regulates EPO production involves the hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF), a transcription factor 18 . Expression of HIF is seen in cells exposed to hypoxia within 30 min 19 , after which the heterodimeric protein travels to the nucleus to activate the EPO enhancer 20 , inducing EPO transcription. In the presence of oxygen, this factor is hydroxylated, suppressing the activity and promoting degradation 21 . Another pathway involved in EPO production is the kinase C pathway, activated through adenosine, which accumulates in hypoxic conditions as a result of the sequential dephosphorylation of ATP, ADP and AMP. This non-HIF pathway also increases EPO mRNA expression 22 . GATA-2, a transcription factor, inhibits the EPO promoter, and is a third pathway of EPO regulation. GATA inhibitors can therefore also enhance EPO production 23 .

After hypoxia-induced EPO production, a rise in red blood cells and haematocrit (Hct) is seen after 60–70 h 24 , corresponding to the time course of CFU-E differentiation into mature erythrocytes 25 . The estimated half-life ( t 1/2 ) of endogenous EPO is approximately 5.2 h 26 , and mechanisms of clearance are somewhat extraordinary. Clearance of EPO by the liver is, as for many other glycoproteins, rather low, mainly due to the terminal sialic acid residues, which prevent galactose receptor binding, internalization and degradation in the liver. Indeed, it has been shown that desialated EPO experiences rapid hepatic clearance 27 , but this pathway is only of minor importance 28 . Renal clearance also plays only a minor role, as the disappearance rate does not change markedly in the anephric state 29 . The major elimination route for EPO seems to be EpoR-mediated uptake and degradation 30 , and bone marrow ablation after myoablative conditioning led to a decrease in EPO elimination 31 . Similar observations were made in irradiated dogs during altitude exposure 32 , and the opposite was seen in patients with hyperactive marrow due to haemolytic anaemia 33 . This mechanism, in turn, would indicate that elimination of EPO is related to its affinity to and residence time at the EpoR.

Recombinant erythropoietin in disease

Given that EPO plays an important role in the regulation of erythropoiesis, a major step in medicine was taken when recombinant EPO was first produced by Lin et al . 34 and Jacobs et al . 35 in Chinese hamster ovary cells, later optimized for clinical use in patients with renal anaemia. Trials with the first recombinant human EPO (rHuEPO) showed a correction of anaemia in end-stage renal disease 36 , and rHuEPO was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for human use in patients with chronic renal failure in 1989 22 . These first recombinant forms of EPO (called epoetin alfa, e.g. Eprex®) are identical to endogenous human EPO with regard to the amino acid backbone and four glycosylation sites, although some differences in molecular composition of the N-glycans have been found 37 . Half-lives are fairly similar to endogenous EPO (4–9 h) 38 , which is also the case for second-generation rHuEPO, epoetin beta (e.g. Neorecormon®) 39 . The same holds true for a later generation of recombinant EPO produced in human cells, epoetin delta (Dynepo®) 40 . Other forms of EPO, darbepoetin alfa (NESP/Aranesp®) and Mircera® (CERA) have a longer half-life due to differences in amino-acid sequence, hyperglycosylation (NESP; t 1/2 = 24–26 h 41 ) and incorporation of a large polymer chain (CERA; t 1/2 = 6 days 42 ). All these forms of rHuEPO can help patients with chronic renal failure to overcome the insufficient production of EPO resulting from the kidney damage and maintain steady-state erythropoiesis.

… and in sport. But does it work?

The treatment immediately attracted the attention of athletes. Given that rHuEPO increases red blood cell mass and exercise capacity in anaemic patients, it might have the same effect in the athlete's body, thereby enhancing performance. With this rationale, athletes started using rHuEPO, and the use of rHuEPO was put on the International Olympic Committee's list of prohibited substances in 1990. The list has now been expanded to all erythropoiesis-stimulating agents [e.g. EPO, darbepoetin, HIF stabilizers, methoxy polyethylene glycol-epoetin beta (CERA) and peginesatide (Hematide®)] 43 . The World Anti-Doping Agency defines blood doping as ‘… the misuse of certain techniques and/or substances to increase one's red blood cell mass, which allows the body to transport more oxygen to muscles and therefore increase stamina and performance’ 43 .

But do rHuEPO and other erythropoiesis-stimulating agents increase red blood cell mass in world-class cyclists and does this result in increased stamina and performance? Here, we examine the factors that determine stamina and endurance performance, especially in elite cycling, and then the effects of rHuEPO on these parameters are reviewed.

What is endurance performance?

Main determining factors.

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Maximal oxygen uptake is a prerequisite but not a sole determining factor

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It is more than the

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Lactate threshold

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Lactate turn point

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Other factors

Besides these main determinants, several other factors have also been reported to influence endurance performance. Heart rate, for example, shows a rightward shift in its relationship with running speed 68 as a consequence of chronic endurance training, although values corresponding to physiological markers such as LT and VT2 remain stable 68 , 83 . This could be related to an increase in cardiac volume due to endurance training 98 , 99 , leading to an increase in stroke volume and allowing a reduced heart rate for the same cardiac output. Breathing pattern is another factor that influences cycling performance, because professional cyclists have been reported to lack a tachypnoeic shift at high workloads, possibly indicating a more efficient use of their respiratory muscles 100 . Also, the quantity of muscle mass recruited for sustained power production can influence performance, because elite cyclists can use 20–25% more muscle mass in endurance tests, therefore reducing the stress and power production per fibre 65 , 101 . Additionally, peak power output has been shown to be a predictor of performance in a time trial 102 , and power-to-weight ratios contribute to climbing performance in cycling 103 . Lastly, two world-class endurance performance athletes have been shown to have extremely low peak blood lactate concentrations, which might indicate a mechanism for their outstanding performances 68 , 69 (note that one of these reports is about Lance Armstrong 69 ).

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Studying the effects of rHuEPO on endurance performance

Search strategy.

Several studies have addressed the effects of rHuEPO with regard to endurance performance in subjects other than patients. A literature search was conducted in PubMed to identify these papers, using combinations of the key words ‘erythropoietin’, ‘athletic performance’, ‘physical endurance’, ‘doping in sports’ and ‘athletes’ for the primary search. Literature references in key papers were examined manually to identify additional papers. We did not attempt to derive quantitative systematic conclusions from a meta-analysis; therefore, this could be termed a qualitative systematic review.

Study population mismatch with professional cyclists

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Recombinant human erythropoietin dosing

The doses of rHuEPO in all studies vary, but all are subcutaneous injections, most in a similar range of 150 IU kg −1 week −1 ( Table 1 ). Almost all studies used forms of rHuEPO with half-lives similar to endogenous EPO, namely Eprex® 109 – 111 , 113 , 114 , 116 or Neorecormon® 104 – 107 , Recormon® 115 , or it was not reported 112 . Only one study used rHuEPO with a longer half-life, NESP 108 . Another problem with evaluating the results of these studies is that only eight 105 , 106 , 109 – 111 , 113 , 115 , 116 of the 13 studies were placebo controlled. As endurance performance can change significantly, for example, due to training, it is crucial to control for these effects with a placebo-treated group. Moreover, unfortunately only five 106 , 109 , 111 , 113 , 115 of these studies were reported to be double blinded, controlling for any bias due to expectation of a positive treatment effect, which is potentially of major influence on the exercise tests performed in the studies, the outcome of which depends on perseverance, hence on motivation. Given that the study using NESP as rHuEPO treatment was not placebo controlled and did not measure any performance parameters during normoxia, it is difficult to draw conclusions about the effects of this form of rHuEPO on endurance performance. Moreover, the newest form of rHuEPO, CERA, to our knowledge has not yet been studied for effects on endurance performance in athletes at all.

Overview of characteristics and outcomes of the studies investigating the effects of recombinant human erythropoietin on endurance performance in subjects other than patients

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Haematological effects of rHuEPO

Although doses differ somewhat across the studies, most studies report similar effects on haematological parameters albeit with a suggestion of dose-related effect. Reticulocyte numbers approximately doubled with the lower doses 109 , 110 and tripled with the higher doses 114 , 116 , and declined to below baseline approximately 7–14 days after rHuEPO treatment ceased 109 , 110 , 114 , 116 . Erythropoietin concentrations also drop below baseline after rHuEPO treatment is stopped 109 , 116 . Increases of 4.6–17.4 and 8.3–19% are reported for haemoglobin concentration and Hct, respectively ( Table 1 ), with no obvious differences between athletes with different training statuses. These levels are reported to return to baseline within 1 month after cessation of treatment 109 .

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Does it translate to cycling performance?

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Other endurance performance parameters are unstudied

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In the reviewed rHuEPO studies, economy ( C ), was measured by only one group 105 and did not change after rHuEPO treatment. This would be expected from the nonhaematological, biomechanical factors that determine C , as discussed in foregoing sections. There is, however, some evidence that prolonged exposure to rHuEPO in healthy subjects may induce changes in the skeletal muscle, with an increase in the relative amount of the slow myosin light chain (type I fibres) and decreased fast myosin light chain (type II) fibres, possibly leading to an improvement in C   134 . More evidence is needed to draw conclusions about effects of rHuEPO on C , especially given that Lance Armstrong, accused of having the biggest doping (e.g. rHuEPO) network in the history of sports, was reported to have a high muscular efficiency that partly contributed to his world-class performance 69 .

Some other parameters, such as blood lactate, end-exercise heart rate and heart rate kinetics, were investigated and reported not to be altered by rHuEPO treatment 106 , although other studies indicate a nonsignificant reduction in in blood lactate 110 and heart rate 110 , 111 or a significant reduction in in heart rate 114 , although only at submaximal exercise 112 . A significant drop in blood lactate at rest and 10 min into a time-to-exhaustion test, but not at exhaustion 105 , was seen. Blood volume was also not affected 112 , 123 . One blinded study investgated the effect of rHuEPO on perception of physical well-being and reported a positive effect on perceived physical condition and strength 113 which, on the basis of evidence, is unlikely to be related to an increased muscular mass or improved vascularization. In a publication 135 from the same study performed by Thomsen et al . 105 , no effects of prolonged rHuEPO treatment on capillarization or muscle fibre hypertrophy in healthy volunteers were reported; although this is contrasted by an animal study showing that overexpression of EPO resulted in 14% greater muscle volume and 25% increase in muscle vascularization, even these effects did not translate to increased muscle force or stamina 136 .

Alternative mechanisms by which EPO works?

It may be argued that focusing on direct endurance measures does not take into account possible mechanisms by which rHuEPO causes better recovery after exercise. Recombinant human erythropoietin may have anti-inflammatory effects and may mitigate ischaemia – reperfusion-related damage 137 – 140 , which could potentially improve recovery. It has been suggested that EPO and its receptor function as a paracrine/autocrine system to mediate the protection of tissues subjected to (metabolic) stress 141 . However, these effects have not been confirmed in properly designed clinical trials. In fact, most clinical trials focusing on postulated tissue-protective effects of rHuEPO have shown adverse rather than beneficial effects. Serious untoward effects have also been shown in rHuEPO-treated patients with stroke, myocardial infarction, acute kidney injury and surgery 142 , compatible with a procoagulant state and/or an augmentation of acute inflammation 143 . The data therefore do not suggest substantial beneficial effects on recovery of muscle injury during exercise.

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Lack of scientific evidence

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A more scientific approach is needed

In summary, the available literature lacks the appropriate information, validity and robustness to conclude that rHuEPO enhances world-class cycling performance. To be able to make such statements, more thorough research needs to be conducted to investigate the effects of rHuEPO on submaximal performance parameters and the cycling economy, preferably in a population with cycling performance abilities as close as possible to those of professional cyclists and in conditions closely resembling racing conditions and the required performance duration. It can be argued that putting the treatment on the prohibited list falsely implies a proven beneficial effect on performance in professional cycling and unintentionally stimulates its abuse 144 , although it should also be recognized that there is no convincing evidence that any drug works in this context.

Adverse effects of rHuEPO in athletes

Apart from creating a level playground for all athletes by banning and trying to prevent doping use, doping is also forbidden to protect the athletes from using possibly harmful substances. The presented rHuEPO studies in healthy or trained subjects do not focus on adverse effects. A significant rise in systolic blood pressure at rest or during submaximal exercise 112 , 129 was reported. The number of subjects and treatment times in the presented studies are too small to detect rare adverse events. Larger studies, namely patient studies, must be consulted for this, although it must be kept in mind that results of these studies do not per se translate to well-trained athletes. One patient study was prematurely discontinued owing to an increased incidence of thrombotic events in rHuEPO-treated metastatic breast cancer patients 145 . Other trials and meta-analyses showed a similar trend in different groups of patients treated with rHuEPO compared with placebo 146 – 148 . These studies used approximately four times higher doses of rHuEPO (usually in the range of 40 000 IU or 600 IU kg −1 week −1 ) compared with the endurance performance studies in healthy subjects. The increased blood viscosity in treated anaemic patients 122 , 149 , the previously described rise in blood pressure and enhanced coagulation 150 , endothelial activation and platelet reactivity 151 and inflammation 152 after rHuEPO treatment have been evoked to explain these thrombotic events. Acute exercise per se also enhances coagulation 153 , although this is less pronounced in trained than in untrained subjects. Given that plasma volume and blood volume are reduced in acute exercise, Hct is increased 120 . This is even more pronounced in dehydrated and hyperthermic exercise conditions 154 , 155 . This combination of factors might increase the risk of thrombotic events in endurance performance athletes using rHuEPO. Increased Hct may lower cerebral blood flow and limit oxygen supply to the brain, predisposing to cerebral infarction 156 . Thrombotic risks are underlined by a case report by Lage et al . 157 that describes how a professional cyclist presented with cerebral sinus thrombosis, thereafter confessing to 3 months of 2000 IU rHuEPO use every 2 days, in combination with 15 days of growth hormone and continuous high doses of vitamins A and E. High Hct also predisposes to heart failure, myocardial infarction, seizures and pulmonary embolism 158 , 159 . Another association is hypertensive posterior encephalopathy 160 . Red cell aplasia, a rare adverse effect, mainly linked to anti-erythropoietin antibody formation due to Eprex® use 161 , is another dire adverse effect of rHuEPO treatment. The improper handling and storage of rHuEPO preparations associated with illicit use in sport might be expected to increase the risks of this and possibly also of other immunogenic complications 162 , 163 . Finally, rHuEPO use may promote tumour growth and angiogenesis in tumours, although this is contested 164 .

To summarize, published case reports have linked adverse effects to rHuEPO use in cyclists. Patient-based studies indicate that rHuEPO has several cardiovascular effects, raising the risk of thrombotic events, encephalopathy and other complications. These risks might plausibly be higher in cyclists because the circumstances in this sport could compound these risks. Also, secrecy due to illicit use in sports might lead to bad handling and storage of the rHuEPO, plausibly elevating the risks of adverse effects, such as red cell aplasia.

Cyclists and rHuEPO: a risky choice to what advantage?

As the case of the United States Anti Doping Agency versus Armstrong proves again, rHuEPO has been used by many professional (including champion) cyclists. Given that it increases Hct, it is thought to enhance performance in professional cycling and has been put on the list of prohibited substances of the International Olympic Committee. As rHuEPO is on this list, cyclists caught were breaking the rules and should be punished for doing so. However, this review shows that only very weak scientific evidence exists about the effects of rHuEPO on cycling performance in professional or even well-trained cyclists. Sport physicians and cyclists should be informed about the dangers of the use of such a substance, as already proposed by Kuipers about doping in general 144 . Neither a scientific basis for performance-enhancing properties nor possible harmful side-effects have been provided for athletes or trainees.

The situation with rHuEPO use in athletes is analogous to the many forms of non-evidence-based treatments that exist in medical practice and which, by common opinion, should be refuted or confirmed by good clinical trials with real-life end-points. A single well-controlled trial in athletes during real-life circumstances would give a better indication of the real advantages and risk factors of rHuEPO use, but it would be an oversimplification to suppose that this would eradicate its use, even if no benefit were to be seen with increased biomarkers of risk.

High-quality scientific evidence is always preferable to the current situation, in which athletes risk their career and health with irrational use of a substance. If the size of the athletic benefit could be shown to be large (which, on the basis of the evidence presented in this review, is unlikely), it would support the enormous and apparently largely ineffective efforts currently made to detect and prevent the use of rHuEPO. If the effect were to be small, these efforts could be directed elsewhere.

Competing Interests

All authors have completed the Unified Competing Interest form at (available on request from the corresponding author) and declare: no support from any organization for the submitted work; no financial relationships with any organizations that might have an interest in the submitted work in the previous 3 years; and no other relationships or activities that could appear to have influenced the submitted work.

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Are Cyclists In The Tour De France Still Doping? (Explained)

Last Updated on March 25, 2024 by Emmanuel

Are Cyclists In The Tour De France Still Doping?

You would probably have heard the sad story of the riders who doped for years on the Tour de France, which tarnished this most famous cycling event in the world’s image.

But are cyclists in the Tour de France still doping, or did the TdF organizers stop this bad practice to regain their former image as it seems today? Let’s see what happened from then to now.

Table of Contents

How Did Doping on the Tour de France Start?

Some riders outperformed their counterparts through performance-enhancing drugs, which was unfortunate and unfair.

This doping scandal shook the cycling industry so badly that its reputation fell to the lowest level but it came out of these challenges.

Those in charge of organizing the Tour de France and other cycling events implemented rigorous doping measures; these protocols stopped the phenomenon until today.

Riders organized in different professional cycling teams must submit the test targeted screenings to ensure they don’t use illegally enhancing performance substances.

Do Cyclists In the Tour de France Still Dope?

Whether the cyclists on the Tour de France are still doping can be debated; there is not much coverage on the subject

The media hardly talks about it anymore making us believe that the phenomenon has been contained.

Cyclists dope for many reasons, including maintaining training performance before the cycle race starts.

Some say most riders are smart enough to be caught by the dag test; they would stop using prohibited substances before the race starts, but we disagree with such a claim.

To some extent, doping helps riders to maintain their bodies destroyed during their cycling careers that demand considerable effort to overcome.

Riders push their bodies through the limits, which can attempt doping to recover from pains faster and endure further racing.

Why Did Lance Armstrong Only Compete In The Tour De France?

The Tour de France was Lance Armstrong’s favorite, but saying it is the only one he attended is a wrong allegation.

Lance started biking when he was 17 by training in Colorado with the U.S. Olympic cycling developmental team.

  • In 1993, Lance Armstrong won ten titles, including the World Road Championships race.
  • In October 1996, he stopped cycling to undergo surgery and chemotherapy after being diagnosed with  testicular cancer.

Lance Armstrong was among the top five finishers in the 1998 Tour of Spain; it wasn’t until 1999 that he won his first Tour de France and six consecutive others, thus a total of seven.

Also, Lance won eleven individual time trials and twenty-two separate stages; he retired in 2011 aged 39.

When Was Lance Armstrong Found Guilty For Doping?

The Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) found him guilty in June 2012 of being doped throughout his cyclist career.

He has since been stripped of all Tour de France titles, and his glory became an absolute nightmare.

He won seven consecutive Tour de France titles, and nothing tells us if other cyclists were not using prohibited substances.

They never caught him all these years, making us believe there were control failures. Likely, many other competitors did the same without the authorities knowing it.

It’s like in a neighborhood with many thieves; whoever you catch is responsible, but we don’t mean Lance was correct to dope.

Many will never forget Lance Armstrong as one of the best cyclists on the Tour de France regarded as the best global sporting event .

What Road Bicycles Was Lance Armstrong Riding?

Lance Armstrong won the Tour of France in 1988 using a Carbon Fibre Trek Madone bike, one of the fastest road bikes.

He continued using Trek bikes until 2005 and won seven titles, as outlined before.

Besides Trek bikes, this company’s other cycling products are Bontrager, Diamond bikes, and Electra Bicycles. Trek Corporation quality road bikes sell from $1,200 to over $13,000.

Are Cyclists In The Tour De France Still Doping?

What Happened to the Titles Stripped from Lance Armstrong?

The titles stripped from Lance Armstrong remain vacant; they have not been awarded to anyone.

Other cyclists stripped of their Tour de France titles for doping include:

Floyd Landis.

Froyd Landis  revealed Lance Armstrong’s long doping history following the allegations he was doing the same.

During Lance’s reign of dominance in the cycling industry, Landis was his teammate on the U.S. Postal Service cycling team.

He was also Armstrong’s confidant and had known his doping secrets for years but never revealed them before the investigation occurred.

Also, the cycling authorities found that Floyd Landis was found like his teammate Lance Armstrong; they stripped his title.

Floyd Landis never recognized the doping allegations he was accused of; Oscar Pereiro (his dolphin) was awarded the so brutal Tour de France green jersey.

Alberto Contador.

Also, Alberto Contador won three Tour de France yellow jerseys from which he was stripped for doping like the other cyclists we have mentioned.

Contador claimed the cause of clenbuterol in his blood was the substances ingested in his food without him knowing, but they didn’t accept his claims.

Jan Ullrich.

The German Jan Ullrich is another famous cyclist who lost his third position in the Tour de France in 2005.

The Cycling Court of Arbitration said Ulrich was part of riders allegedly using performance-enhancing drugs.

Jan Ullrich lost his third place, and they banned him from participating in cycling for two consecutive years.

Also, many thought the Olympic committee would strip Jan Ullrich of his men’s racing Olympic medal won in 2,000, but it never happened.

The Content Final Thoughts.

That’s what we can tell about the cyclists are still doing in the Tour de France; we hope this content is helpful.

There have been several cases of doping at the Tour de France but it seems that the organizers have curbed this bad practice; we don’t talk about it anymore.

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