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It's all about blood. Increasing the ability of the blood to deliver oxygen to the muscles is a potent performance-enhancer. Athletes are prepared to go to tremendous lengths to beat the tests.
L'Equipe says cases from Romandie and Suisse
There could be four to seven more doping cases announced before the start of the Tour de France Saturday, the French sports publication L'Equipe reported on Thursday. Those cases will not be biological passport cases but stem from positive controls at this year's Tour de Romandie and the Tour de Suisse, according to the French newspaper, which is owned by the Tour organiser ASO.
The UCI would not confirm that information, but also did not deny it. "I cannot confirm that there will be further riders closed out from the Tour because of doping after the Dekker case," UCI spokesman Enrico Carpani told the German press agency dpa.
Dekker was charged earlier this week with having a positive control for EPO, in a re-tested sample. The UCI further said that the Dutch rider was caught under the bio-passport programme due to irregular blood values.