Belgian riders note fewer blood passport controls

Belgian riders Tom Boonen, Thomas De Gendt and Sep Vanmarcke are having fewer and fewer out-of-competition doping controls for the blood passport programme. “Meanwhile, they know our values,” Boonen said.

Vanmarcke (Blanco), defending champion in the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, had his last out-of-competition control in November.  “For me it was in November or December,” De Gendt (Vacansoleil) said on the Belgian television show Reyers Laat. “That was a long time ago. I sometimes wonder if I've completed by whereabouts address okay.”

Boonen, of Omega Pharma-QuickStep, has been controlled three times so far this year, “twice out of competition and once during the Tour of Oman,” he told

"I think I am sufficiently monitored, the controllers don't have to stand at my door every day.” When the blood passport was initially set up, “I was checked about 24 times within a short time. Now they know my values and check them less often."

"These checks also cost a lot of money. They can't do it every day."

On the other hand, Lotto Belisol's Frederique Robert, who won two stages at the Tour of Gabon, “has been checked 16 times this year,” according to Sporza commentator Michel Wuyts. “WADA, the UCI and the Flemish Community. And he is fine with that.”

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