Russian Cycling Federation confirms two positive tests for meldonium

Track riders Anastasia Chulkova and Pavel Yakushevsky have both tested positive for the same banned substance used by tennis star Maria Sharapova

The Russian Cycling Federation has confirmed two further positive tests for banned substance meldonium, with track cyclists Anastasia Chulkova and Pavel Yakushevsky both failing anti-doping controls.

>>> Why Maria Sharapova’s meldonium positive raises questions for cycling too

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Chulkova, a former world champion in the points race, and Yakushevsky, both tested positive for what the federation described as “leftover traces” from use of the drug in September 2015, the last time the federation claims the athletes took it.

Meldonium was placed on the World Anti-Doping Agency list on January 1 of 2016, meaning it was lawful to use before then despite its performance enhancing properties.

More than 100 athletes have tested positive for meldonium since it became banned, with Russian athletes coming under particular scrutiny after a number of positive tests, including high-profile tennis star Maria Sharapova.

The drug is used to treat heart conditions and according to the Latvian manufacturer, Grindeks, can take “several months” to leave your system.

Katusha rider Eduard Vorganov has so far been the only road racer to test positive for the substance and was provisionally suspended in February by the UCI.