Keisse acquitted and cleared for Gent Six
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Monday, November 2, 2009

Keisse acquitted and cleared for Gent Six

by Ben Atkins at 11:30 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping, Track
Belgian track cyclist Iljo Keisse has been cleared of doping charges by a disciplinary committee of the Belgian Cycling Union and is now clear to continue racing. The judgement crucially comes in time for Keisse’s home six-day race: the ‘Zesdaagse van Vlaanderen’ – the Six-days of Flanders in Gent, Belgium.

Keisse returned a positive control for cathine and hydrochlorothiazide (HCT) after having won the Six-day of Gent last November. HCT was of particular concern as it is a diuretic, which, while it is not performance enhancing in itself, can be used to mask the use of other substances. He requested that the B-Sample be counter-analysed, but it too was positive and he was fired by his Topsport-Vlaanderen team.

According to Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad, the committee accepted Keisse’s defence that he did not knowingly dope, and the testimony of three university professors that it was “very unlikely” that he took a particular drug. It was agreed that the presence of Cathine was as a result of the degradation of pseudo-ephedrine, found in the legal cold treatment Sinutab that he’d admitted taking. The presence of HCT was likely due to a contaminated dietary supplement.

Unusually, Keisse has continued to race during the investigation. In fact he was unable to attend the meeting that exonerated him as he is currently racing at the Six-days of Grenoble, France.

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