At a press conference on Wednesday, officials of the French Anti-Doping Agency (AFLD) have announced that a number of unusual medications were found in teams' rubbish bins by French police during this year's Tour de France. The products, which are not prohibited by the World Anti-Doping Code, have nevertheless been described as a "surprising therapeutic arsenal" by the AFLD.
"Theoretically, they are incongruous products [to be found] in an environment where people are in good health," said Michel Rieu, the AFLD's scientific expert, according to AFP. "It seems abnormal to me to be finding anti-hypertensive drugs. Their aim is to ensure that the athlete keeps a low blood pressure. Why?"
In addition to substances designed to treat hypertension, French police forces also allegedly discovered Sitagliptin, an oral drug normally used by diabetic patients, as well as Valpromide, an anticonvulsant used in the treatment of epilepsy and psychiatric disorders.
AFLD President Pierre Bordry stated that he had "signalled this [the discoveries] to the World Anti-Doping Agency as soon as July", but Olivier Rabin, science director at WADA, denied receiving the information when asked by AFP in September.
On Monday, French newspaper Le Monde also reported that the police searches, conducted on the teams' rubbish during the Tour de France, also uncovered several products that did not have importation authorisation from the French Agency for the safety of Health products (AFSSAPS) and were thus illegal on French soil. The medications, two anti-hypertensive drugs called Telmisartan and Quinapril, were seized.
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