Miguel Angel Lopez handed four-year ban by UCI for past doping transgressions

Miguel Angel Lopez has not managed to escape without punishment from his recent tribunal for alleged doping violations. Despite previous reports suggesting no evidence had been found against 'Superman', the UCI has ruled there was enough to give the Colombian a four-year ban from cycling.

"The Tribunal found Miguel Ángel López guilty of an anti-doping rule violation (ADRV) for use and possession of a prohibited substance (Menotropin)*, concomitantly with the 2022 Giro d’Italia, and has imposed a four-year suspension on the rider," reads an official statement by cycling's governing body. "In accordance with the World Anti-Doping Code and the UCI Anti-Doping Rules, the period of suspension started on 25 July 2023 and will remain in force until 24 July 2027."

The now-30-year-old Lopez was riding for the Astana Qazaqstan Team at the time of the transgression at the 2022 Giro d'Italia but given this latest blow, it's not out of the question that we have the last of the former four-time Grand Tour stage winner in professional cycling.

"As a reminder, the disciplinary proceeding was initiated following an investigation conducted by the International Testing Agency (ITA) based on evidence obtained from the Spanish Guardia Civil and the Spanish Anti-Doping Organisation (CELAD) in the so-called Operation “Ilex” concerning Dr Marcos Maynar. The UCI welcomes this valuable collaboration," the UCI statement continues. "Furthermore, in line with the Procedural Rules of the Tribunal, the decision will be published on the UCI website. The decision may be appealed before the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) within one month. The UCI will not comment further on the matter."

"The UCI delegated the operational activities of its anti-doping programme to the International Testing Agency (ITA) in January 2021. Since then, cycling’s clean sport efforts have been led by the ITA Cycling Unit, which is dedicated specifically to all disciplines of cycling," concludes the statement. "The UCI and the ITA are bound by a service agreement which guarantees that the ITA operates in an independent manner."

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