German former rider receives nine year doping ban and stripped of 11 years worth of results

Björn Thurau retired from racing at the end of 2019

Björn Thurau
(Image credit: Getty Images)

German former professional rider Björn Thurau has been handed a nine-year and six month ban as well as having all his results from the last 11 years crossed out for violating anti-doping rules.

The grounds that the National Anti Doping Agency Germany (NADA) used were the following violations of anti-doping: the use or attempted use of prohibited substances and methods, possession of prohibited substances or methods, placing on the market or attempting to market prohibited substances and administration or attempt to administer prohibited substances.

All of the German's results from December 21, 2010, where the first anti-doping rule violations were suspected, all the way to March 9, 2021 have been wiped out and he has been banned from the sport for nine years and six months.  

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The suspension began on August 19 2021, meaning the 33-year-old would be 42 when the ban ends. Until then, Thurau will not be allowed to be involved with any competition or sporting activity unless it is in authorised anti-doping prevention or rehabilitation programs.

Thurau rode for various teams over his 12-year career, including Europcar, Bora-Argon 18 (now Bora-Hansgrohe) and Wanty-Groupe Gobert (now Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert), taking no wins but several top-10s in smaller races and mountain classifications.

He rode at the Giro d'Italia once with Europcar in 2014, but he did not finish the race. He did win the mountains jersey at the 2013 Tour of Luxembourg and the 2014 Tour de Suisse, but these results have since been taken away. 

After retiring, Thurau joined GCN as a presenter on their German YouTube channel.

Thurau has not appealed this ruling so there will be no trial in front of the German Sports Arbitration Court or the International Sports Tribunal CAS. The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) does still have the power to overturn the ban in principle, the ant-doping authority said. 

The investigation was a joint one between the Swiss and German Anti-Doping Agencies with NADA coming to the final verdict on September 22, 2021.

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Tim Bonville-Ginn

Hi, I'm one of Cycling Weekly's content writers for the web team responsible for writing stories on racing, tech, updating evergreen pages as well as the weekly email newsletter. Proud Yorkshireman from the UK's answer to Flanders, Calderdale, go check out the cobbled climbs!

I started watching cycling back in 2010, before all the hype around London 2012 and Bradley Wiggins at the Tour de France. In fact, it was Alberto Contador and Andy Schleck's battle in the fog up the Tourmalet on stage 17 of the Tour de France.

It took me a few more years to get into the journalism side of things, but I had a good idea I wanted to get into cycling journalism by the end of year nine at school and started doing voluntary work soon after. This got me a chance to go to the London Six Days, Tour de Yorkshire and the Tour of Britain to name a few before eventually joining Eurosport's online team while I was at uni, where I studied journalism. Eurosport gave me the opportunity to work at the world championships in Harrogate back in the awful weather.

After various bar jobs, I managed to get my way into Cycling Weekly in late February of 2020 where I mostly write about racing and everything around that as it's what I specialise in but don't be surprised to see my name on other news stories.

When not writing stories for the site, I don't really switch off my cycling side as I watch every race that is televised as well as being a rider myself and a regular user of the game Pro Cycling Manager. Maybe too regular.

My bike is a well used Specialized Tarmac SL4 when out on my local roads back in West Yorkshire as well as in northern Hampshire with the hills and mountains being my preferred terrain.