French sports daily L'Equipe has reported on its Web site that Liquigas rider Manuel Beltran has tested positive for the drug EPO. According to an unnamed anti-doping official, the test result came after stage 1 of the tour. Beltran finished stage 1 in 25th place before being one of several randomly selected for anti-doping controls.
Since the Tour is operating without the UCI this year, the French Anti-Doping Agency (AFLD) is responsible for all the blood and urine controls. Once official confirmation comes from AFLD, Manuel Beltran will most likely get the boot from this years tour. It is then expected that his team Liquigas, will "voluntarily" leave the tour.
Before signing with liquigas last season, Beltran was a member of 3 of Lance Armstrong's tour winning campaigns.
We'll see how this unfolds and keep you posted.
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