We have recently received an email from Michael Rogers about his case relating to clenbuterol from the Japan Cup last year. Afterwards Rob Arnold spoke to the rider who has been suspended from racing (and by his team) since a positive doping control at the Japan Cup last year. This is part of what he had to say:
RIDE: There was talk about a statement at the Tour of Beijing saying that riders ought not to go from there to the Tour of Japan [Japan Cup]… Where do we go with this case? Is it an example of what’s to happen with the Tour of Beijing?
Michael Rogers: “I don’t know where it will go. I know the UCI obviously stated in its press release today that the presence of clenbuterol in urine [samples] are still regarded as an anti-doping violation. And I don’t exactly know what the future position of the UCI will be. Personally, I would exercise extreme caution if travelling. especially to countries where a history of clenbuterol is well documented. Actually, I’d go as far as saying avoid meat… it’s a very, very complicated subject and through this period it was a subject I was able to learn a little bit more about and I can see how ambiguous it is.”
This has got the potential to be a landmark case, Mick. Do you realise that?
“We don’t know if it will be a landmark case. I think a lot can be learnt from it. Once again the UCI has stated that they’ll continue to assess – in the foreseeable future – case by case. But all I can say is that I hope a lot will be learnt from my case from both sides of the coin. And when I say that I mean, that I hope that the relevant authorities will learn a lot from my case and that the athletes can learn a lot from my case as well – and the dangers of eating meat in countries where there’s a known problem.
“There are a lot of challenges and it’s a really sensitive case. It’s so complicated.”
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Here is his statement in full:
Statement by Michael Rogers – Wednesday, 23 April 2014
“Today, I received the extremely pleasing news that the UCI has decided that no period of ineligibility is to be imposed against me following my inadvertent adverse analytical finding for Clenbuterol in October 2013. As a consequence, my provisional suspension is lifted with immediate effect.
“The UCI acknowledged that the presence of Clenbuterol in my sample collected during the 2013 Japan Cup was due – as I always stated – to the consumption of contaminated meat during my stay in China for the Tour of Beijing. The UCI, in particular, confirmed the absence of any fault or negligence on my part.
“Notwithstanding the above, and because the substance was found in my sample during the competition, my result obtained during the 2013 Japan Cup must be automatically disqualified in accordance with the UCI rules. Although this is unfortunate for me, the UCI is bound by its rules and must apply them consistently.
“Over the past four months, my family and I have endured a very difficult time. The UCI’s decision means I can return to racing immediately, and I am looking forward to getting back to work, competing in the sport I love.
“I wish to take this opportunity to thank my family, friends, teammates, colleagues, medical experts and fans who have showed continued support and understanding. Further, I wish to show my gratitude to the board of Tinkoff-Saxo for the professional manner with which this ambiguous ordeal has been handled. Thank you for having the perception of what is right, rather than following the path of least resistance.”
– Michael Rogers
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RIDE spoke to Michael Rogers an hour after it was announced that he was cleared of the doping charges that stemmed from a test at the Japan Cup late last year.
Here is the introduction to that discussion. (Full interview to follow shortly.)