Simon Yates 'caught in the middle' of doping storm, says Orica-GreenEdge directeur sportif

Orica-GreenEdge directeur sportif Matt Wilson believes that Simon Yates has been “caught in the middle” after testing positive for Terbutaline in a routine in-competition test at Paris-Nice.

According to his team, 23 year-old Yates, was prescribed the medication to treat his on-going asthma problems. However the team doctor who administered the drug failed to apply for a Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) with the UCI as per the specific rules. When the substance was picked up in the test it triggered an anti-doping violation and Yates could now face a ban from competition.

Speaking ahead of the opening stage of the Tour de Yorkshire, Wilson told Cyclingnews that the error was highly unfortunate but that a human mistake rather than premeditated doping was at the root of the matter.

“I only found out this morning, like everyone else, but the situation is pretty clear. The doctor has made an error and we’re all capable of making a mistake and Simon has been caught in the middle. It’s a real shame for him and I hope that the proceedings go smoothly and go well. I hope he’s back racing quickly but there’s no timescale on that.”

News of Yates’ positive test broke late on Thursday evening, with the Daily Mail first announcing that a leading British rider had tested positive, before then linking the news directly to Yates. In most cases it is the rider, the team or the governing body who announce positive tests and although the team later stated that they “were concerned by the leak of this information”

Wilson had this to say: “I don’t know [about the leak] but it’s almost a bit irrelevant. The fact is that it’s happened and we’re dealing with that. It’s out of our hands now.”

The Orica-GreenEdge team are set to race the Tour de Yorkshire under a clou but Simon’s twin brother Adam is in the Orica-GreenEdge squad and started the race.

“I expect him to race. The guys have all woken up to the news but we’ll go out there strong and give it our best,” added Wilson.

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