Hoste continues to insist upon his innocence after two year ban and 150,000 euro fine handed down
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Monday, December 30, 2013

Hoste continues to insist upon his innocence after two year ban and 150,000 euro fine handed down

by VeloNation Press at 12:42 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
 
Former Classic specialist considering appeal of biological passport sanction

Leif HosteAlmost a full year after the UCI requested that the Belgian federation KBWB/RLVB open disciplinary proceedings against triple Tour of Flanders runner-up Leif Hoste for biological passport violations, the former pro rider has been handed a two year suspension plus a fine of 150,000 euro.

The UCI is yet to comment on the matter but Belgian media has reported the outcome of the case, saying that Hoste will have to pay a sizeable amount as part of his sanction.

The money concerned is however half the 300,000 euro total that the Belgian federation had been seeking.

Hoste retired at the end of 2012 and today said that the ban didn’t affect him. “The two year suspension barely matters,” he said, according to Sporza. “I’ve already stopped so I won’t be looking for a new licence. The fact that the fine is halved is not bad news, but it’s still a lot of money.

“I’m said to be a doping user, but I categorically deny any doping. I’ve never tested positive, and using illegal drugs has never been proven. Moreover, errors happened during the investigation.”

Hoste’s defence had claimed that most of the blood samples taken did not follow the correct procedures “Errors were made with the controls,” his attorney Johnny Maeschalck had previously told Sporza. “They, like his blood passport, are invalid. The passport should not be used as direct evidence.”

Hoste said today that he would consider whether to appeal or not, with a planned meeting with his lawyer to happen in the New Year.

Hoste finished second in the Ronde van Vlaanderen three times, in 2004, 2006 and 2007. More recently he failed to reproduce that form, and had a number of serious injuries.

The most serious of those came in 2011 when the then-Katusha rider in the Driedaagse De Panne-Koksijde and suffered a serious concussion.

He suffered from headaches for months afterwards, was dropped by the Russian team and moved down to the Pro Continental level. He raced for the Accent.jobs-Willems Veranda squad for two years but his contract was not renewed at the end of 2012.

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