Tour de France Winner Contador Fails Drug Test

By Michael Preston
|  Thursday, Sep 30, 2010  |  Updated 7:01 AM EDT
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PARIS - JULY 25: Alberto Contador of team Astana (L) celebrates as Denis Menchov of team Rabobank looks on after the twentieth and final stage of Le Tour de France 2010, from Longjumeau to the Champs-Elysees in Paris on July 25, 2010 in Paris, France. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

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A sport that didn't need another black eye just ended up with a brand new shiner.

Tour de France champion Alberto Contador tested positive for a banned stimulant during this year's race and has been suspended by the International Cycling Union (UCI), reports ESPN.

The UCI confirmed that a lab in Germany found clenbuterol, a drug often prescribed to asthma patients that can also stimulate weight loss, in Contador's urine sample on July 21. However the amount was 50 picograms, which the UCI said is "400 time(s) less than what the antidoping laboratories accredited by the World Anti-Doping Agency's must be able to detect."

After the positive findings, the UCI "formally and provisionally suspended" the three-time Tour winner.

Contador blames contaminated food for the results.

"The experts consulted so far have agreed also that this is a food contamination case, especially considering the number of tests passed by Alberto Contador during the Tour de France," said Jacinto Vidarte, the publicist for the Spanish cycling great.

Contador first heard about the results on August 24. He is set to hold a press conference on September 30 to address the matter.

He won his third tour in four years in July, beating out Andy Schleck of Luxembourg by 39 seconds.

Tour officials could strip Contador of his title, making him only the second person to meet that fate. American Floyd Landis had his 2006 win invalidated after also failing a drug test. Immediately after the race and for several years after, Landis contested that he had not used performance-enhancing drugs. In May 2010, Landis finally admitted that he had in fact used banned substances and accused former teammate and seven-time Tour winner Lance Armstrong of doping. Armstrong continues to deny any allegations that he used PEDs.

Selected Reading: ESPN, LA Times,Wall Street Journal

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