French Anti-Doping Agency (AFLD) president Pierre Bordry told Le Monde that he is convinced that "two new products were used during the Tour de France: two medicines that aren't yet on the market". Bordry also said that he believes there was clear evidence of blood transfusions taking place during the race.
According to Le Monde, the two new products are hematide, a third-generation EPO that maintains haemoglobin levels, and Aicar, a product that works on muscular tissue and encourages the burning of fats. Bordry is quoted as saying he was shocked to see how thin some Tour riders looked.
Hematide is still undergoing clinical testing and won't be authorised for use until 2011. It is already on the World Anti-Doping Agency's banned list.
Le Monde reported that tests to detect use of these two products should be ready in the near future and could be used on samples given by riders at the Tour de France. The AFLD is reported to be ready to re-test samples given by some riders during the 2008 race.
Bordry also said that the AFLD had found evidence of what he described as "hardcore medicines" in rubbish bins during the Tour, among which was "a substance for producing insulin that is normally used by diabetics".
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Peter Cossins has written about professional cycling since 1993 and is a contributing editor to Procycling. He is the author of The Monuments: The Grit and the Glory of Cycling's Greatest One-Day Races (Bloomsbury, March 2014) and has translated Christophe Bassons' autobiography, A Clean Break (Bloomsbury, July 2014).
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