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Chaotic anti-doping control in Belgium

The anti-doping controls carried out at the finish of the Belgian GP de la Région Wallonne cyclo-cross in Dottignies on Saturday turned out to be so badly organised that UCI jury chairman Edwin Kistemaker included the incident in his report to the world governing body. The Walloon Community in charge of the controls did not properly communicate the list of riders to be tested, resulting in chaotic circumstances with one rider, Bart Wellens, already on his way home when he was notified of the control.

"Many things had to be noted in that control," Kistemaker told HLN. "The doctor only came as the riders were already on the final lap. He didn't even have an official paper with him to post the names of the riders at the finish. I had to get him that. I feared that too many riders would not be informed, so I had them called over the public address system - even though that is no longer permitted by the regulations. Even the location of the control wasn't indicated."

At the finish of the rainy and muddy event won by Frenchman Francis Mourey, the controls turned out to be "a mess", according to third-placed Gerben De Knegt. "Normally, there is a chaperone waiting for you if you're going to be controlled, but there were none. I knew that I had to go to the controls as I finished on the podium. But Wellens saw no-one and so he turned straight home in this awful weather," he told the Telegraaf.

Bart Wellens, who finished fifth, was already in Gent when word of his control reached him, so he had to return all the way and finally carried out the control. Fortunately, the incident did not result in a 'missed control'.

"There was no information as to where the control was," added Wellens. "I had to look for it for half an hour. That really can't be."

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