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Valjavec claims innocence in Biological Passport case

By:
Susan Westemeyer
Published:
May 04, 2010, 14:30 BST,
Updated:
May 04, 2010, 15:43 BST
Edition:
Second Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, May 4, 2010
Tadej Valjavec (Ag2r-La Mondiale)

Tadej Valjavec (Ag2r-La Mondiale)

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Slovenian cites illness as explanation for irregular blood values

Tadej Valjavec has proclaimed his innocence after being named by the International Cycling Union (UCI) as being suspected of breaching Anti-Doping regulations under the biological passport programme.

Valjavec claimed that his blood values were skewed by a continuing illness last year which his team should have reported to the UCI, but the team doctor failed to do so.

“I have no words,” the 33-year-old said. “My sporting career has ended.”

Valjavec said the illness accounts for the variations in his blood profile, and claims he had a certificate regarding his illness and subsequent treatment, but, “a doctor on our team did not do his work. The certificate was not forwarded to the International Cycling Union, which then began proceedings against me," he wrote on his personal website www.tadejvaljavec.com.

“I can't believe how it is possible that the system does not work and that this can happen.”

On Monday, the UCI called for disiplinary action to be taken against Valjavec, Franco Pellizotti and Jesus Rosendo Prado after variations were discovered in each rider's blood profiles as part of their biological passports. Valjavec was immediately suspended by his team, AG2R-La Mondiale.

The Slovenian also explained why he missed a doing control in April 2009, saying he was at the hospital for the birth of his daughter and had turned off his mobile phone.

“I am not so stupid, so I really can't believe this is happening,” he said.

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