Spain replaces Guerra with Cobo after positive test
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Friday, September 18, 2009

Spain replaces Guerra with Cobo after positive test

by Agence France-Presse at 10:33 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, World Championships
Juan Jose Cobo will race the men's elite time trial for Spain at next week's world road race championships after teammate Hector Guerra's positive test for EPO (erythropoietin), the Spanish cycling federation announced Friday.

Guerra was one of three cyclists, including Nuno Ribeiro and fellow Spaniard Isidro Nozal, who tested positive for the banned blood booster on August 3 prior to the Tour of Portugal, won by Portuguese Ribeiro.

The results of those tests were only publicly released Friday, leading to suspensions for all three riders only a few days before the start of the world road race cycling championships in Mendrisio, Switzerland handed down by the International Cycling Union.

Fuji team rider Cobo, who will still contend the blue riband event of the road race next Sunday, will now also race the 49.8 km individual time trial two days earlier. Also racing the race against the clock will be specialist Ivan Gutierrez.

Alejandro Valverde, Oscar Freire and Samuel Sanchez will lead Spain's bid to win the men's road race title, whose prize is the coveted rainbow jersey.

All-rounder Valverde is the current Tour of Spain leader and has in the past narrowly missed out on the gold, a feat achieved by Freire a record-equalling three times.

Spain's road race team:
Oscar Freire (Rabobank), Juan Manuel Garate (Rabobank), Alejandro Valverde (Caisse d'Epargne), Joaquim Rodriguez (Caisse d'Epargne), Dani Moreno (Caisse d'Epargne), Samuel Sanchez (Euskaltel), Carlos Barredo (Quick Step), Juan Jose Cobo (Fuji Servetto), Ruben Plaza (Liberty)

Time trial:
Ivan Guttierez (Caisse d'Epargne), Juan Jose Cobo (Fuji Servetto)

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