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Armstrong failed drug tests in 1999: UCI

Wellington (New Zealand), Apr.18 (ANI): Former cycling champion Lance Armstrong returned four samples with traces of banned corticosteroids in the 1999 Tour de France, the International Cycling Union (UCI) said, although the governing body added it did not handle them as positive tests.

On Tuesday the Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad published a copy of an alleged internal UCI memo which said a lawyer for the sport’s ruling body had said the US rider’s samples from the 1999 showed traces of corticosteroids on four occasions.

According to stuff.co.nz, UCI had earlier denied accepting the tests as positive only because the banned steroid traces were likened to a skin-cream that Armstrong used to treat his saddle sores, for which he had produced a therapeutic use exemption (TUE) certificate during the 1999 Tour de France.

However, Armstrong admitted that the certificate was backdated following the UCI memo reports.

According to the report, UCI had tested Armstrong 15 times on July 4,15 and 21, the samples for which were analyzed by the French National Anti-Doping Labaratory that indicated traces of triamcinolone, a corticosteroid but ruled out violation of anti-doping rules on the grounds of the usage of validated skin-cream.

The tests proved that the steroids were neither injected nor taken orally, which left no evidence for French Ministry or UCI to prove Armstrong’s doping offences earlier, the report added. (ANI)