Provisionally suspended rider Mauro Santambrogio will reportedly request for a B-sample analysis to be undertaken after returning a positive control for Erythropoietin (EPO) on the opening day at the Giro d'Italia. The Vini Fantini rider won a snowy Stage 14 ahead of Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) and finished ninth-overall after dropping down the standings in the final week.
"I can only say that I am in disbelief about what has happened and will request the counter analysis as soon as possible," Santambrogio told Ansa.it.
Santambrogio had made what appeared a dramatic improvement this season after spending the past three seasons as a domestic with BMC Racing. He begun his 2013 campaign with a string of strong results including third at the Trofeo Laigueglia, fifth at GP Citta di Camaiore, victory in the one-day GP Industria & Artigianato before heading for his Giro warm-up at the Giro del Trentino - where he finished second-overall.
The 28-year-old has been provisionally suspended by the UCI and been fired by his Vini Fantini team. His positive test comes after Danilo Di Luca's failed out-of-competition test was announced shortly after the completion of the three-week race.
In light of the two doping positives the future of the 'fluro' squad appears to be on the brink of collapse, with Vini Fantini manager expressing his absolute frustration.
"Everything’s finished, the whole project is finished", he told Tuttobiciweb.it.
Vini Fantini's status for upcoming RCS Sport races is yet to be determined by Giro race manager Michele Acquarone. The end of year WorldTour race Giro di Lombardia is one such invite that will now be put into question.