Veteran Spanish climber Oscar Sevilla has been suspended following a positive ‘A’ test for hydroxethyl starch, a blood plasma substitute, during the Tour of Colombia, in which he finished second overall.
The 33-year-old former Kelme and Comunidad Valenciana rider was one of the many Spanish pros to be involved in the Operation Puerto anti-doping probe back in 2006, although – like most of them – he denied he had any connection to it.
After 2006, Sevilla rode for several smaller teams, including Relax-Gam, with whom he won a stage of the Tour of Catalunya, and Rock Racing. In 2010 he was officially an amateur although he ‘guested’ for several low-level professional teams.
Nicknamed ‘El Niño’ [The Kid] because of his baby-face looks, Sevilla already tested positive once in his career, for caffeine, back in 2000. He received a six-month suspension.
His best year came in 2001, when he finished second in the Tour of Spain behind Angel Casero and seventh in the Tour de France, as well as being best young rider.
Sevilla then raced briefly for Phonak before heading to T-Mobile in 2005, when he was sacked by the team on the eve of the Tour de France after news of the Operation Puerto scandal broke. Following his latest brush with the anti-doping authorities, his career could be over.