Gerry Ryan -the owner of the Orica-GreenEdge team, fears that British rider Simon Yates' adverse analytic finding for the asthma medication Terbutaline is a case that risks being judged in a "kangaroo court" due to its leaking to the media.
"There has been no B sample," Ryan told Cyclingnews by telephone on Friday morning. "But once again, pardon the pun, it's going to be a kangaroo court. I believe in the system of the UCI. Hopefully it goes through the process."
Ryan is in Yorkshire with the Orica-GreenEdge team for the Tour de Yorkshire that starts today. Asked if his faith in the team is rock solid in light of events, Ryan insisted it is, and said he will remind the riders that they are "here to race a race."
Orica-GreenEdge confirmed Yates' test result in a team statement that was released on Thursday evening.
The statement said the team was notified of the adverse analytical finding on April 22 for a test carried out on March 6, on stage six of Paris-Nice, and that the substance was Terbutaline.
Terbutaline can be used to treat asthma, but it is banned in competition, unless riders have a therapeutic use exemption (TUE) for it.
The statement said the substance was given to Yates "in the form an asthma inhaler and accordingly, this was noted by the team doctor on the Doping Control Form, signed at the time of the test," and that it was given as part of "ongoing treatment" for Yates "documented asthma problems."
The statement explained: "In this case the team doctor made an administrative error by failing to apply for the TUE required for the use of this treatment. The use of Terbutaline without a current TUE is the reason it has been flagged as an adverse analytical finding. This is solely based on a human error that the doctor in question has taken full responsibility for."
"There has been no wrong-doing on Simon Yates' part. The team takes full responsibility for this mistake and wishes to underline their support for Simon during this process."
The statement said the team was "concerned by the leak," of Yates' test result and would "make no further comments until there has been a full evaluation made of the documentation, statements and evidence that the team and Simon Yates are now submitting to the UCI in order to clarify everything."
Contravention to the UCI process
Ryan was openly upset that the case has been made public in contravention to the UCI process for such cases, a process he experienced as president of Cycling Australia.
"I am surprised that when we have to go through the process that someone has leaked it to the English press," he said. "That's where it came from. Once again when something happens like that it goes back from the UCI to the [national] governing body … and here it is, plastered all over the media. I am disappointed it hasn't gone through the correct procedure. The process when I was president at CA was that the UCI discloses it to the governing body. The CEO and myself were notified and we would go through due process."
“In this case … there is a statement from the doctor, and a statement from Simon and it should go through the process. Simon is to present his case today [as is the team doctor], not because it is out in the press but because of the process."
A British Cycling spokesman told Cyclingnews earlier: "British Cycling can confirm that it has been notified by the UCI of a potential anti-doping rule violation against a British rider based on an analysis of a sample provided in-competition.
"As with any other doping violation charge at this level, those proceedings will be managed independently of British Cycling by the UCI.
"It would be inappropriate to comment further until the process has been completed."