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Riccò ban extended

Riccardo Riccò (Meridiana-Kamen)

Riccardo Riccò (Meridiana-Kamen) (Image credit: Team Meridiana-Kamen)

Riccardo Riccò, who hoped to return to competition with his new Meridiana-Kamen team this summer, will have to wait at least until September 10 in order to be allowed to race again. The Italian Anti-Doping Tribunal of CONI has extended the rider’s suspension, which had been due to end on August 10, for another 30 days.

Italian anti-doping authorities are still investigating whether or not the ‘Cobra’ transfused his own refrigerated blood before he was admitted to a hospital in critical condition in February this year.

At the time, Riccò had been reported as having admitted his ill-practices to the doctors, but he later denied having done so. If an auto-transfusion is proven, the Italian faces a lifetime suspension after already having tested positive for EPO CERA during the 2008 Tour de France.