Heras B test will take longer

The testing of Roberto Heras B sample taken at the penultimate day of the Vuelta a España this year will take longer than expected, according to Spanish media sources. The result of the test carried out on Monday at the Consejo Superior de Deportes (CSD) laboratory in Madrid was said to be inconclusive at this point, with further examinations necessary to establish a clear result. Previous reports thought to have been issued by the rider's surroundings, that the CSD made a formal error in its analysis, have been refuted by the Spanish cycling federation, as well as the laboratory.

CSD director Francisco Rodríguez has told the press that "the processing is not finished; it is long and complicated and will take another 48 hours." The results of the B sample, which might put an end to Roberto Heras' career if the suspicion of EPO use is confirmed, are therefore expected on Friday.

At a press conference held in Madrid hotel Villarreal on Wednesday evening, the Liberty Seguros rider doubted the validity of the urinary rEPO test. "The method isn't valid because it's not precise," Heras said. "I was expecting a negative result, because I have been saying all along that I haven't doped, and that there must be an error." If the result of the counter-analysis remains inconclusive, legal observers say that the case will be suspended.

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