Stefano Lanzi, who was recently crowned Masters World Champion in the Marathon discipline, has been provisionally suspended following a positive test for Clenbuterol.
The Championships took place in Il Ciocco, Italy and Lanzi finished fourth in the race but first in the M4 category
that includes racers from 45-49 years old. Lanzi's sample was taken following the race on 25 September and his provisional suspension was recently confirmed by the UCI
Lanzi tested positive for an S1 anabolic agent called clenbuterol
. Clenbuterol is a beta 2 agonist that is traditionally used as a treatment for asthma, however it has also been used as a performance-enhancing substance or as an off-label weight loss drug by bodybuilders and celebrities
. Most famously, Alberto Contador was banned for two years and stripped of the 2010 title of the Tour de France and the 2011 title of the Giro d'Italia after testing positive for the drug at the 2010 Tour de France
The Italian rider blames his positive test on treatment for a prior injury. He told italy24news
, "Last year I was the victim of a bad injury in which I broke some vertebrae and spent a few days in traction on a hospital bed, since then I have been prescribed medicines, some based on cortisone, my mistake was never having communicated it to the anti-doping authorities"
The rider claims he presented the anti-doping testers with his medical records at the doping control but they could not take that into account at the time of testing and told him he should have registered it earlier. He said, "I will have to present in Lausanne for counter-analysis in the company of my lawyer. Whoever knows me knows how much effort and how many hard workouts I have done in many years of activity on the saddle of a mountain bike, upon learning the news it is as if everything had collapsed on me, I am very disappointed”.
Lanzi now faces a suspension of up to four years and will likely be stripped of his recently earned title. As Clenbuterol is a non-specified substance
, extraneous circumstances will not be taken into account when deciding his sanction. We have reached out to Stefano for more information and will update this post if he has any further statements.