Riccò to battle twelve year ban before CAS in December 11th
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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Riccò to battle twelve year ban before CAS in December 11th

by Shane Stokes at 8:34 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
Final roll of the dice for Italian’s cycling career

Riccardo RiccoRemaining determined to fight on despite the twelve year ban handed to him earlier this year. Riccardo Riccò will next month go before the Court of Arbitration for Sport in an attempt to get a green light to return to racing.

CAS has confirmed a hearing date for December 11th. Then, Riccò will argue against the suspension given to him by the Italian National Anti-Doping Tribunal on April 19th.

He was told he could not race again until January 18th 2024, when he would be 40 years of age. He also had to pay a penalty of €5,000 plus legal costs of €15,000.

The duration of the ban was due to the fact that he had already been given a 20 month suspension after testing positive for CERA during the 2008 Tour de France.

Riccò returned to cycling after that sanction and vowed to race clean, but was admitted to hospital in February 2011. He was said then to have admitted to medical staff that he had given himself a blood transfusion which had been stored in a refrigerator for 25 days. Riccò later denied this and said the staff were lying.

He was racing with the Vacansoleil team at the time but was fired soon after his treatment in hospital.

An investigation into the incident stalled in May of last year when medical expert professor Giovanni Beduschi died suddenly due to a heart attack; it got moving again the following month when the prosecutor of Mondena sent the dossier to the anti-doping prosecutor with CONI.

Meanwhile Riccò attempted to return to racing and signed a contract with the small Meridiana-Kamen team. He was planning on riding the Tour of Serbia, but this became impossible when on June 8th, the Commission for Health Protection of the Italian cycling federation decided to suspend his licence. Once it ended, that sixty day ban was further extended by Dr Francis Plotinus, the president of the National Anti-Doping Tribunal.

Riccò then appeared before CONI on September 14th, and denied the claims made against him. However he was later deemed guilty of blood doping and the twelve year ban was imposed upon him.

He remains determined to try to race again and will plead his case before CAS in just over one month’s time.


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