Vincent Lavenu, the team manager of Ag2r-La Mondiale, was furious when he heard the news about Tadej Valjavec being one of the riders identified by the International Cycling Union (UCI) for having irregular blood profiles in his the biological passport. Lavenu announced that the Slovenian will be fired as soon as his national federation will sanction him.
"I got to know about it at the same time as the media," Lavenu said. "I'll face the situation because in our team we strongly believe in the biological passport and we finance it - like the other teams who are part of this program. We'll respect the rules.
"Valjavec will not take part in the Giro d'Italia. He's temporarily suspended as a precaution until the sanction is pronounced by the Slovenian cycling federation. After that, he'll be fired."
Valjavec, 33, joined Ag2r-La Mondiale in 2008 after transferring from Lampre. He never won a race for the French team but finished the 2008 Tour de France in ninth overall and the 2009 Giro d'Italia in eighth place.
"He wasn't a captain in our team but a senior rider who delivered regular results in big races," Lavenu said. "It's painful. I hope this won't harm the team. We never know the potential consequences of such an affair. I'll ask my riders to not give up because this is not what our team is about."