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Tour de France drowns in doping shame

July 18, 2008

The Tour de France lurched into yet another crisis on Thursday when Italian climbing specialist Riccardo Ricco tested positive for the blood-boosting drug EPO.

Following last year's scandal-hit edition, organisers were hoping for a clean race but all their aspirations were wiped out when three riders tested positive for EPO (erythropoietin) in cycling's blue-riband event.

The 24-year-old Ricco, runner-up on the Giro d'Italia and winner of two stages on the Tour, was tested after the fourth stage, a time trial in Cholet.

Photographs: Getty Images | Text: Reuters


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