The Synergy Baku Cycling Project announced today that it has suspended Moldovan rider Alexandr Pliuschin for returning a non-negative test for Salbutamol at the Sharjah Tour in Dubai. The test dates back to his days with the Skydive Dubai Cycling Team, with whom he raced the November 2014 event.
Riders are allowed to use the asthma drug Salbutamol in competition as long as they have a valid Therapeutic Use Exemption, however they are limited to a maximum of 1600 micrograms over 24 hours. The team gave no information regarding the reason for Pliuschin's non-negative test, but stated it would keep the rider suspended until the issue is resolved.
"The team makes no exception for any rider with an adverse finding. It is our policy and we cannot deviate from it," said team manager David McQuaid. "In Alexandr's case it happened during an end of season race last year for another team. But the ultimate onus is on the rider himself and Alex is not disputing that it was his and only his mistake."
The team recently joined the Movement for Credible Cycling (MPCC), and said it was handling the case within the framework set down by the organisation.