PARIS – Floyd Landis was fired by his team and the Tour de France no longer considered him its champion after his second doping sample tested positive Saturday for higher-than-allowed levels of testosterone.
The second or “B” sample, “confirmed the result of an adverse analytical finding” in the “A” sample, the International Cycling Union said.
Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme said Landis no longer was considered champion, but the decision to strip him of his title rests with the UCI.
If stripped of the title, Landis would become the first winner in the 103-year history of cycling’s premier race to lose his Tour crown over doping allegations.
UCI lawyer Philippe Verbiest said Landis would officially remain Tour champion pending the American disciplinary process.
“Until he is found guilty or admits guilt, he will keep the yellow jersey,” he said. “This is normal. You are not sanctioned before you are found guilty.”
If found guilty, Landis also faces a two-year ban from the sport.
Landis’ spokesman Michael Henson confirmed this week that the rider had tested positive for a testosterone-epitestosterone ratio of 11:1 — well above the 4:1 limit.
I’d like to believe this isn’t true. The ratio test is a bit lacking but if the NYT’s report of synthetic testosterone being present is true it’s hard to believe Landis. Given the level of doping in cycling I guess it was just a matter of time until this happened. Unfortunately I doubt even this this will make much of a dent.