Tiernan Locke could get extension to biological passport deadline
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Monday, October 14, 2013

Tiernan Locke could get extension to biological passport deadline

by VeloNation Press at 5:46 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
 
Initial twenty day limit for provision of information about to expire

Jon Tiernan LockeUnder pressure from the UCI to account for what it says are unusual blood values, Jon Tiernan Locke will be given some leeway if he is unable to provide an explanation before the stipulated deadline.

According to the Telegraph, the Team Sky rider is still putting together the information he needs to argue that his case is not due to blood doping. He was originally given twenty days to respond but with that timeframe about to pass, it appears that some degree of flexibility may be given.

On Sunday September 29th the Sunday Times reported that the 28 year old rider had been contacted by the UCI several days earlier, with the governing body warning him that the blood values from his biological passport had been deemed irregular.

He was given twenty days to provide an explanation.

It was stated that the suspect blood values dated back to September of last year, the same month he won the Tour of Britain and thus secured a contract with Team Sky. Tiernan Locke had been racing with the Continental Endura team at the time, and showed a marked improvement on previous results.

That team issued a statement after the news was released, saying that it was committed to racing clean and saw no warning signs while he was part of the squad.

“Endura Racing’s culture has always been entirely at odds with cheating in any form including the use of PEDs and nothing in JTL’s conduct during his 2012 season with the Team gave rise to concerns that his approach was at odds with this in any way.”

It added that he was tested by both Garmin-Sharp and Team Sky and that neither of those had expressed any concerns about his values. It added that after Tiernan Locke attended a Tenerife training camp with Team Sky in May 2012, that it had full access to the rider from that point.

Tiernan Locke had originally been due to compete on the British team in the world road race championships on September 29th of this year, but stated three days before then that he would not take part.

“Was sorry I had to withdraw from the worlds line up, just don't have the form to help the lads there. Good luck to team GB though!” he wrote via his Twitter account.

Instead, when the Sunday Times reported the blood data issues and Team Sky confirmed the news, it became clear that Tiernan Locke’s withdrawal was more complicated than he had initially indicated.

According to the Telegraph, the UCI has told the newspaper that it had the discretion to extend the twenty day deadline and that it would do that if Tiernan Locke requested more time.

The rider said earlier this month that he was “extremely confident” of showing that the readings which prompted the red flags were due to illness he suffered this year.

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