Yesterday, news broke of Alberto Contador’s positive drug test for Clenbuterol, a banned substance that aids weight loss and breathing, and is used to improve muscle to fat ratios…a purpose some cattle farmers illegally take advantage of to improve meat yields. Today, the UCI has placed Contador under a provisional ban pending further investigation.
“It’s a case of food contamination to which I was the victim,” Contador said in news conference in his hometown of Pinto, outside Madrid, Spain.
Contador said he ingested the tiny amount of clenbuterol in meat that had eaten both the day before and the day of the control. He also said the meat came from Spain, but did not say specifically where it was bought and that while other riders ate the same meat, he’s the only one of them to have been tested.
The 27-year old triple crown winner said the UCI informed him of the positive test on August 24, and two days later he met with the UCI medical team to discuss how it happened.
“The UCI itself affirmed in front of me that it was a case of food contamination,” he said. “This is a genuine mistake, it’s sad that a sport such as this is involved in things like this. I think that this will be resolved in a clear way, with the truth up front.”
The UCI understands that is a special case, which has to be examined. Contador added he was “sad and disappointed, but with my head held high.”
“I have been through this for a month a half, without sleeping,” adding that he had not even told his own family “because I prefer that they don’t suffer and I that I alone suffer.”
The UCI has stated: “The concentration found by the laboratory was estimated at 50 picograms (50 trillionths of a gram) which is 400 times less than what the antidoping laboratories accredited by WADA (World Anti Doping Agency) must be able to detect.” A testing of a second sample taken at the same time confirmed the result.