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Frenchman Sylvain Georges fails drug test at Giro d’Italia

VAJONT, Italy (AFP) — French rider Sylvain Georges (Ag2r La Mondiale) has tested positive for a “specified substance” during the Giro d’Italia, according to cycling’s world governing body, the UCI.

The UCI said Georges had produced an “adverse analytical finding,” with the stimulant heptaminol showing up in a urine sample collected during the Giro’s seventh stage on May 10.

“Mr. Georges has the right to request and attend the analysis of his B sample,” the UCI said. “The UCI Anti-Doping Rules do not impose a provisional suspension given the nature of the substance, which is a specified substance.”

Ag2r La Mondiale management withdrew Georges before the start of Wednesday’s 11th stage.

It now falls to the French cycling federation to decide whether or not to open disciplinary proceedings against Georges.

Georges’ director, Vincent Lavenu, expressed his disappointment later on Wednesday in a team press release.

“Unfortunately we have learned a few hours ago the adverse analytical finding Sylvain Georges,” said Lavenu. “We are obviously saddened by this news, which penalizes the group, both in terms of image from a sporting point of view. We remain confident in the fight against doping. The Ag2r La Mondiale team will continue to do everything possible to defend the ethical values ​​that should be the rule in top-level sport.”