Ballan handed two year ban for doping, lifetime suspension for Dr. Guido Nigrelli
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Friday, January 17, 2014

Ballan handed two year ban for doping, lifetime suspension for Dr. Guido Nigrelli

by Shane Stokes at 4:28 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
Fiorenzo Aegean Bonazzi given four year ban in connection with Mantova doping investigation

Alessandro BallanFormer world road race champion Alessandro Ballan has been handed a two year doping ban by the Italian anti-doping tribunal (TNA), starting today, due to his part in the Mantova doping affair.

In addition to being suspended until January 16th 2016, the BMC Racing team rider has also been handed a two thousand euro fine and instructed to also pay costs of four hundred euro.

Ballan, who won the world road race championships in 2008, is one of many former Lampre team riders and staff who were implicated in the long-running doping investigation.

Italian pharamacist Guido Nigrelli was found guilty of violations of article 2.7 and 2.8 of the WADA Code, namely the trafficking and administration of banned products or methods, and gave him a lifetime ban from dealing with athletes. He too was instructed to pay costs of four hundred euro.

Italian Olympic committee CONI had previously requested a seven year ban for another doctor, Fiorenzo Aegean Bonazzi, on the grounds of the administration of doping substances or methods. The TNA today limited that to a four year suspension and instructed him to pay the same court costs.

Ballan raced with Lampre between 2004 and 2009 and is one of a large number of riders who have been implicated in the doping investigation. Further suspensions are expected to come over time.

He joined the BMC Racing Team in 2010 but was sidelined in May 2011, along with then-teammate Mauro Santambrogio.

They had both been implicated in the investigation, but when the enquiry appeared to stall each were permitted to return to competition.

In July 2013 the duo were amongst 27 individuals named by La Gazzetta dello Sport as being officially indicted in connection to the case. Ballan withdrew from the Tour de Wallonie but team press officer Georges Lucinger said that this was to do with injury rather than the investigation.

He said at the time that there was no suggestion of a suspension from racing. “We as a team haven't been notified about anything so there is no reasons to talk about any measures,” he told VeloNation then.

The team has not yet commented on today’s sentence but, at 34 years of age, Ballan’s career may well be over.


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