Kenyan born British cyclist Chris Froome has been forbidden from competing in this year’s Tour de France.
According to Le Monde, race organisers Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO) are concerned that the ongoing doping investigation into the defending champion will reflect negatively on the race, leading them to tell the cyclist he cannot take part.
The French newspaper says ASO has a rule, in accordance with the regulations of the UCI, that “reserves the right to refuse participation in – or to exclude from – the event, a team or any of its members whose presence would be such as to damage the image or reputation of ASO or the event”.
Team Sky have appealed to the French Olympic Committee. The appeal will be heard on Tuesday, with the decision announced the following day, just three days before the iconic race begins.
A statement from the British-based team said: “We are confident that Chris will be riding the Tour as we know he has done nothing wrong.”
Froome’s problems began last September when he produced an adverse analytical finding (AAF) for salbutamol during the Vuelta a Espana.
Salbutamol is taken to alleviate the symptoms of asthma, by opening the airways to help aid breathing, and Froome has a history of suffering from the condition.
The use of Salbutamol is permitted, without the need of a therapeutic use exemption (TUE), but only within certain doses.