IAM Cycling’s Stef Clement has called for leniency to be shown after he turned up late to a drugs test at the end of stage 12 of the Giro d’Italia due to the hustle and bustle of the finishing area.
The Dutchman worried about receiving a two year ban for missing the test, but the rider has some pretty decent extenuating circumstances, by all accounts.
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After crashing, like many others, on the wet descent from Crosara, Clement suffered cuts and bruises to his elbow and hip. He continued the race and finished in the gruppetto, over 17 minutes behinds stage winner Philippe Gilbert.
With the stage over, Clement’s group faced a struggle to even get up the final climb, with crowds reportedly filling the roads.
“By the blocked finish I was late in anti-doping control. Wet, cold and with dirty wounds. Risk 2-year suspension.”
He added later: “Have now done the control and given my explanation. Now hoping for some leniency from the authorities. Extreme conditions, seems to me.”
IAM Cycling sporting director Thierry Marichal said: “The last riders were hijacked by the crowds even before they could start the final ascent. The security service was unable to contain the exuberant fans on the road.
“This was a bit of a problem for us since Stef Clement was called to the doping control at the finish. We had to help him elbow through with a car in order to get him to the doping control tent in time so that they could test him.”