News for July 27, 2001

Recent results and new features

Millward positive - for a local anaesthetic

By Jeff Jones

The world's number one ranked female cyclist, Anna Millward (Saturn) has tested positive for a restricted substance (Lidocaine) on the UCI and IOC lists, according to Cycling Australia. The announcement was made by CA on Thursday while Millward was competing in the International Thuringen Rundfahrt der Frauen in Germany.

Millward told Cyclingnews that the substance was "a product called 'Soov' which is in all A.I.S. medical kits and is not be banned under Australian regulations...My main error was in not writing down that I used 'Soov' on my drug test form as if I had done that then the Lidocaine in my urine would have been explained, and it would not have registered as a positive test."

She was using the substance during the Tour de l'Aude in France to treat mosquito bites which became inflamed and in turn led to the use of a topical cream. The UCI does allow the use of certain topical creams that contain trace amounts of banned products, provided they are applied locally and are for a specific medical necessity.

Millward was tested on May 24 after winning stage 6 of that race, with the results being made known to CA recently. Cycling Australia CEO Graham Fredericks told The Age newspaper that "We've got a positive test for a minor infraction for local anaesthetic, which is the result of application of an ointment. It's a minor issue and I stress there's no suggestion of performance enhancement involved."

Fredericks said that if found guilty, Millward may receive a punishment ranging from a warning to a possible three-month suspension. This would be the first time in her career that the successful Australian cyclist has tested positive.

According to her Saturn team, her second urine sample is being evaluated. The result of this will then determine the course of action that the various parties will take.

James Victor (AIS Coach) said that "We are a little puzzled about how it would have turned up in a urine sample, but the important thing now is to move forward and complete our report to the UCI." He added the AIS is very regretful for the incident and any resulting impact on Millward and the Saturn Cycling program.

"This appears to have been a simple inadvertent mistake on the part of the Australian team personnel and they have expressed their regret over the incident," said Tom Schuler, general manager of the Saturn Cycling Team. "It is very unfortunate for Anna and for our team. This was clearly a situation that arose out of an error."

Montgomery out for the rest of the season

Swiss rider Sven Montgomery (Francaise des Jeux) was one of the most seriously injured cyclists in the Tour de France stage 16 pileup, which occurred with 30 kilometres to go in the 227 kilometre stage from Castelsarrasin to Sarran. The crash, caused when Euskaltel's Angel Castresana missed a bend, led to the withdrawal of five cyclists from the race, three of whom (Wauters, Pozzi and Heppner) ended up with broken collarbones.

Montgomery suffered from five fractures to the head, and will probably be transferred tomorrow to a hospital in Bern, Switzerland for neurosurgery. He did not lose consciousness in the accident, but was described as "groggy" after the fall.

Doctors estimate that he will be out for between 6-8 weeks, which would put paid to practically most of the rest of the season.

Virenque starts again in Critérium de Montpon

The organisers of the Critérium de Montpon (Dordogne) have said that recent Domo-Farm Frites signing Richard Virenque will be on the start list for the event, to take place on August 17. Virenque is currently serving a suspension for drug use, and is allowed to compete again on August 15. Just prior to the Tour de France start in Dunkirk, Virenque surprised everyone by announcing his contract with Domo-Farm Frites for the rest of the season.

40 riders are scheduled to compete in the event, including Didier Rous (Bonjour), Jacky Durand (Francaise des Jeux) and Laurent Roux (Jean Delatour)

Kirsipuu signs for two more years with Ag2r

It's finally official that Jaan Kirsipuu (Ag2r) has extended his contract with Vincent Lavenu's team for another two years. Kirsipuu won a Tour de France stage into Strasbourg this year, before retiring when the race hit the Alps. The 32 year old has in fact always ridden for Vincent Lavenu since he started as a pro in 1992.


The rough parcours of Laurent Fignon's new stage race, Paris-Corrèze (September 28-30), was revealed today during the Tour. Stage 1: Massy-Palaiseau-Ormes, Stage 2: Salbris-La Châtre, and Stage 3: Evaux-les-Bains-Tulle will comprise the route.

Three stagiaires for La Française des Jeux

Click for larger image
Jamie Alberts
Photo: © JF Quenet

La Française des Jeux has chosen its three stagiaires for the end of the season. And it's not exclusive to Frenchmen anymore. Besides Russell Downing, there will be Jamie Alberts, a 21 year-old Englishman racing in France with the Nantes 44 club.

He has won 8 races this year in France, including the Tour of Pays d'Iroise, the Tour du Loiret (stage race) and the GP Leclerc, all in elite category. He's the second rider from Nantes 44 joining a pro team after Ukrainian Youri Krivtsov has signed a two years contract with Jean Delatour recently.

Young Frenchman William Bonnet of UC Chateauroux will be the third stagiaire with Marc and Yvon Madiot's outfit.

Courtesy of Jean-Francois Quenet.

Swimming body doubts EPO tests

By Gerard Knapp

It's often claimed that there are more positive tests for doping in cycling because there are more tests, with the UCI claiming it is taking a tougher stand than other sports.

Adding weight to that claim are the actions of the international ruling body for swimming, FINA, which has refused to introduce testing procedures to detect use of erythropoietin (EPO) at the World Swimming Championships, currently being held in Fukuoka, Japan.

Apparently the decision was made six years ago and FINA has questioned the validity of the EPO tests, and does not plan to introduce tests until September this year.

FINA's inaction on EPO tests was slammed by high-profile swimmers, such as Australian freestyler Ian Thorpe, who has won four gold medals so far. Thorpe told reporters "As a clean athlete it doesn't look good for the sport. I don't think there is a strong enough deterrent." He also thought that swimming was not a clean sport, adding "I don't know if it ever will be."

"A lot of things happen with FINA that disappoint me - the lack of tests and the way the tests are done," he added.

Recent results and new features on Cyclingnews

Major Races and Events
   September 7-29, 2002: Vuelta a España (GT) - Preview, stage list
   May 11-June 2, 2002: Giro d'Italia (GT) - Preview, stage list, photos
   July 6-28, 2002: Tour de France (GT) - Full preview & official route details
   December 8: Superprestige Rd 5 (Cat. 1) - Erwin Vervecken
   November 29-December 4: Six Days of Noumea (6D) - Sassone/Neuville victorious
   November 26-December 1: Six Days of Zurich (6D) - Day 6 - McGrory/Gilmore/Schnider win
   December 1: Melbourne Cup on Wheels (IM) - Scott Moller, Keirin, Sprint, Support races
   December 2: Cyclo-cross World Cup #2 (CDM) - Sven Nijs again
   November 24-December 3: Juegos Deportivos Centroamericanos (JR) - Final results
   December 8-9: Frankfurter Rad-Cross (Cat. 2) - Alex Mudroch, UK National Trophy Series #4 (Cat. 3) - Roger Hammond, Grote Prijs Industrie Bosduin - Kalmthout (Cat. 1) - Bart Wellens, Int. Radquer Obergösgen (Cat. 2) - Björn Rondelez, Trofeo Mamma e Papa Guerciotti (Cat. 3) - Enrico Franzoi, Premio Egondo (Cat 3) - David Seco, Irish cyclo-cross championships - Robin Seymour

Results: local racing
   Australia - CycleWest Promotions Omnium Series #2, Eastern Suburbs Summer Criterium Series, Carnegie Caulfield Tuesday criterium, Southern Cross Junior Track Open & Madison Cup, Manly Warringah CC, George Town Track Carnival, Carnegie Caulfield CC, Randwick Botany CC, Gold Coast CATS CC, Caesar's Illawarra CC, Caesar's Illawarra (track)
   Denmark - Danish cyclo-cross Post Cup #3   
   Italy - Gran Premio Città di Bassano
   Luxembourg - GP De Kopstal
   New Zealand - Cyco Criterium series
   Spain - Elorrio cyclo-cross
   USA - Georgia Cross Series Championship, Chimborazo Grand Prix cyclo-cross, Boulder Cross Rd 6, New Mexico State Cyclo-x Champs, Sorrento Cyclo-x & California State Champ's, Boulder Cross Rd 5, Verge New England series, Northampton CC Cyclo-cross Championships, Chris Cross International CycloCross

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