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Lavenu: I'm worried about the team's future

Peter Cossins
May 18, 2013, 06:41,
May 18, 2013, 07:41
First Edition Cycling News, Saturday, May 18, 2013
Critérium du Dauphiné
Sylvain Georges off the front

Sylvain Georges off the front

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Ag2r boss confirms team will miss Dauphiné if Georges' positive is confirmed

Ag2r La Mondiale manager Vincent Lavenu has stated his team will not take part in next month's Critérium du Dauphiné if Sylvain Georges' positive test for Heptaminol is confirmed. Georges is awaiting results of the analysis of his B sample taken at the Giro d'Italia on May 10, having admitted taking a product called Ginkor Fort to improve circulation in his legs.

Speaking to Le Dauphiné just before undertaking reconnaissance of the Tour de France time trial between Embrun and Chorges, Lavenu said, "If this new analysis is positive, in accordance with our commitments, we will not participate in the Critérium du Dauphiné."

Ag2r is a member of the Movement for Credible Cycling (MPCC), which rules that a team that has had two positives within 12 months must suspend itself from racing for eight days as of the start of the next WorldTour race. The news about Georges comes after Ag2r's Steve Houanard tested positive for EPO last fall.

"I don't know what the consequences are but it is fair to say that I am worried about the future of the team," Lavenu admitted.

Describing himself as "discouraged" and "going through a bad moment", Lavenu said of Georges: "I am sure he had no desire to cheat but he should have informed our doctor. It's an error, a negligent thing to do, which is costing us very, very dearly."

In an open letter published on Wednesday, Georges said, "I took Ginkor Fort, which is freely available without prescription. Now it appears that that medicine contains a very small dose of the prohibited substance Heptaminol, which I had never heard of before today.

"I did not study the composition of the drug and did not consult the team doctor before taking it… I haven't cheated and I will do all that is in my power to prove my good faith."

fujisst More than 1 year ago
The minimization is sickening.
antmills More than 1 year ago
Do me a favour ..... ALL pros KNOW the situation regarding taking ANYTHING into their body. It's bad enough that anyone claims that a steak contained a banned substance, but please, do not insult our intelligence by suggesting that you casually walked into a pharmacy & bought ANYTHING for "helping circulation in the legs" and it never occured to you that this is just the time to be considering whether ANY "medical" product might contain a banned substance. If this guy really means what he claims, then he deserves to be banned on the grounds of sheer stupidity alone! I sympathise with the management of AG2R, but am very impressed with their commitment to their charter. They at least deserve credit for that. I read of a team which has refused to ban a confessed cheat who "consulted" Ferrari ..... and for them, I have zero respect!
_nm___ More than 1 year ago
1 - you're not on your guard 24/7. you just can't be. 2 - heptaminol? go ask a pharmacist or another health care professional. unless they look up the Prohibited list, the answer you'll get is: "it's classed as a vasodilator, i can't imagine that it is prohibited"
Frenchie More than 1 year ago
So why not consult with the team doctor before ingesting any OTC drugs?
TheGreatMan More than 1 year ago Thats a pic that GinkoFort stuff. Says it has heptaminol right on the front of the package. I agree with Antmills 100%
tralala More than 1 year ago
he said he doesn't know what heptaminol is. maybe he isn't a very smart guy, we had a gymnast who had a gold medal at the 200olympics taken away because of a nurofen. substance which a year later was no longer illegal. it happens, we shouldn't think he did it intentionally because he isn't a superstar, losing his contract would probably bankrupt him until any suspension would be over.
Torrrr More than 1 year ago
And of course skier Alan Baxter had his Olympic bronze medal taken because he ingested a prohibited substance that was present in an over the counter American product but not in the British product of the same name. And I only recently read that it was in such small quantity that had his event been earlier in the games he wouldn't have tested positive because the mobile testing labs wouldn't have picked it up. As it was, his event was at the end of the games and his sample transported to a permanent lab with more sensitive testing equipment.
bikepixi More than 1 year ago
Oh dear, from the TheGreatMan's link, it looks like he would rather seem like he is cheating than admit he has hemorrhoids.
wrinklyvet More than 1 year ago
Yes, and it is apparently good for staving off muscle fatigue.
Bubba Son More than 1 year ago
Took Ginko when at high altitudes - it helps. Sleeping at high altitudes may improve white blood cell count. Should we limit Colombian riders because they live at high altitude? Should we ban the riders from eating steaks because they have more protein than vegetables? Ought we to be more upset at Donut eaters, McDonalds, and Barristers?