Oscar Sevilla handed six month doping ban in Hydroxyethyl starch case
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Monday, September 26, 2011

Oscar Sevilla handed six month doping ban in Hydroxyethyl starch case

by Shane Stokes at 7:40 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
Spanish rider won’t fight suspension

Oscar SevillaSpanish rider Oscar Sevilla will sit out the upcoming RCN Classic in Colombia, with the rider and his team confirming that he will not contest a suspension imposed on him ten days ago after his positive test for hydroxyethyl starch. The 34 year old, who competes with the Orgullo Paisa team, has been handed a six month ban from competition.

In a statement issued by his team, the squad and Sevilla commented on the sentence plus his positive test on August 15th 2010, taken on the final stage of the Vuelta a Colombia. It asserts that the findings show there was no intentional guilt on his part.

“In the analysis of the case, the resolution acknowledges that it [the positive result] was a fact involuntary, due to emergency medical treatment, and the substance Starch Hydroxyethil did not increase athletic performance by Oscar Sevilla,” it stated.

It added that Sevilla accepts the sentence and has decided not to appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport on the matter.

His team said that it would stand by him, saying that it will “continue to provide moral support to the athlete and once he completes the penalty, will bring him back to the elite team's roster for the 2012 cycling season.”

Sevilla has continued to compete since the positive test, taking advantage from the fact that unlike other substances, a positive A sample for hydroxyethyl starch does not lead to an automatic suspension from competition.

His performances in the past thirteen months include second overall in the 2010 Vuelta a Colombia, as well as three stage wins in this year’s race plus fourth overall in the Tour of Utah. He is likely to lose the Colombian results of a year ago; it remains to be seen what will happen with the later results, although it seems probable he could also be stripped of those.

Sevilla won the white jersey of best young rider and finished seventh overall in the 2001 Tour de France. He was due to start the 2006 race alongside then-T-Mobile team-mate Jan Ullrich, but both riders were ejected from the team due to their links with Operacion Puerto.

He has competed for smaller teams since then, including Relax-Gam, Rock Racing and his current set-up.

Hydroxyethyl starch is a specified substance under the WADA rules, due to the fact that it is a blood plasma volume expander which can be used to disguise the increase in hematocrit that occurs with the use of EPO and other related substances.

However under current rules, it is banned only if it is injected intravenously. It is the same product that 2010 Vuelta a España runner-up Ezequiel Mosquera tested positive for. A final pronouncement is yet to be made on his case.


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