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Kashechkin's suspension upheld

Andrey Kashechkin (Astana Team) stands proudly on the podium.

Andrey Kashechkin (Astana Team) stands proudly on the podium. (Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)

Kazakh Andrey Kashechkin lost an appeal Friday of his two-year suspension for doping a week after the suspension expired. The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) upheld his suspension issued by the International Cycling Union (UCI).

The former Team Astana cyclist tested positive for blood doping in an out-of-competition doping control while on vacation on August 1, 2007. He denied the charges.

Kashechkin at first challenged the charges in a Belgian court, claiming that doping test violate human rights. However, the court dismissed the case.

The Kazakh Cycling Federation (KCF) refused to suspend Kashechkin because it said that it never received the full documentation from the UCI. The UCI said that it had sent the dossier to the KCF three times.

The UCI officially suspended Kashechkin in December 2008. Kashechkin appealed the suspension to the CAS this past June.

His positive doping control was the third in three months for Team Astana in 2007. It led to the removal of general manager Marc Biver, who was the team replaced with Belgian Johan Bruyneel. German Matthias Kessler tested positive for testosterone and it was announced in June of that year. One month later, Alexander Vinokourov tested positive for blood doping at the Tour de France and forced the team's withdrawal from the race.

All three cyclists are now again eligible to ride. Vinokourov announced his intention of riding the Vuelta a España this year for Team Astana. Neither Kessler nor Kashechkin has yet announced their plans, although Kashechkin has said he wants to return to racing.