Contador banned for a year, has 10 days to appeal

Alberto Contador has been handed a one-year suspension from competition by the Spanish Cycling Federation (RFEC) for testing positive for clenbuterol during the 2010 Tour de France. He has also been stripped of his 2010 Tour de France win.

Spanish paper Marca reported on Wednesday evening that Contador was given the 12-month ban, and that he now has 10 working days to appeal against the decision.

A definitive verdict in his case is due by February 10, 2011.

Contador was provisionally suspended by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) in August after tesing positive for banned drug clenbuterol during the second rest day of the 2010 Tour de France on July 21 in Pau.

A low amount of the drug was found in Contador’s urine sample – 50 picograms or 0.000 000 000 05 grams per millilitre – but its use is banned at any level.

The Astana rider quickly blamed tainted meat as the source of the clenbuterol, claiming that a friend had imported a steak from Spain for him to eat. Unscrupulous farmers have in the past used clenbuterol to increase the quality of meat from their livestock, although its use in farming is banned in the European Union.

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