Froome's Vuelta test bad for cycling, says Bardet

Chris Froome being asked to explain results from a test taken at this year's Vuelta a Espana is bad for cycling's reputation, according to Romain Bardet.

A urine sample supplied by Froome on September 7, following stage 18 of the Vuelta, showed a concentration of salbutamol that was double the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) threshold of 1,000 nanograms per millilitre (ng/ml).

Froome went on to claim a first Vuelta win, becoming the third man to secure the red jersey and the Tour de France in the same year.

Asthma medication salbutamol is permitted by WADA rules without the need for a therapeutic use exemption (TUE) when inhaled up to a limit of 1,600 micrograms over 24 hours. The adverse finding, confirmed through a test of the 32-year-old's B sample, does not necessarily constitute a break of the rules and Froome has not been hit with a provisional suspension.

Froome has protested his innocence and has welcomed the UCI's decision to ask he and Team Sky for more information, but Bardet - who finished second and third behind the Brit in the past two Tours de France - believes the latest developments further damage the sport's already questionable credibility.

"This is not good news for cycling," he said. "Pretty much everyone gets hit by something like this, cycling's credibility first and foremost.

"We really could have done without it. It's not something anyone can rejoice about.

"Let's hope that a swift and objective probe can clarify the facts and leave no doubts about what happened."

 

 

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