Italian Championships runner-up, Reda, tests positive for EPO

Francesco Reda, who won the first stage of the An Post Rás before being disqualified, tested positive at the Italian National Championships

Francesco Reda after the Italian Road Championships in 2015
(Image credit: Watson)

Francesco Reda, who finished a surprise second to Vincenzo Nibali in the Italian National Championships in June, has tested positive for the EPO variant Aranesp.

Reda, who was racing for Continental squad Team Idea 2010 ASD, provided the positive sample after the race on June 27, where he beat Lampre-Merida's Diego Ulissi into second place.

The ex-QuickStep man won the opening stage of the An Post Rás back in May, before being thrown off the race for holding onto a team car on stage two.

Reda has been suspended from the sport before. In 2013 he was handed a two year ban for evading an anti-doping control at the GP Città di Camaiore while racing for Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela.

The ban was later reduced to 14 months due to him testifying to the Cycling Independent Reform Commission (CIRC). His return to cycling this season has seen the Calabrian achieve some of the strongest results of his career, but is now suspended with immediate effect and now faces an eight year ban, per the WADA Code.

According to Italian website, a second rider is thought to have tested positive at the same race, though his identity has not yet been revealed.

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