New anti-doping test for Tour de France

A new drug test will be introduced to this year’s Tour de France by the French anti-doping agency (AFLD) in the on-going fight against dopers in the pro peloton.

Speaking to news agency Reuters France, AFLD president Pierre Bordry said that the test was for a new substance that previously could not be detected by conventional testing. However, Bordry would not reveal what the substance was, or how it would be detected.

The test isn’t finalised yet, but all samples taken during this year’s Tour will be stored and retroactively tested for the new substance.

Several riders’ samples from last year’s Tour were retroactively tested when a detection procedure for banned blood-boosting drug CERA, a form of EPO, was introduced. It was this test that caught Riccardo Ricco, Leonardo Piepoli and Bernhard Kohl, who all thought that the drug they were taking was not detectable.

Kohl met with AFLD representatives on Monday to see whether the two parties could work together in the fight against doping.

The 2009 Tour de France starts with an opening time trial in Monaco on Saturday, July 4.

Tour de France 2009 – Cycling Weekly’s full coverage
Tour de France anti-doping measures explained
CERA: New scourge of the peloton
Ricco admits taking EPO before 2008 Tour de France
Kohl confirms he doped
UCI president comments on doping scandals