Former Team Sky rider cleared in doping case
Michael Rogers has been cleared to race again after the International Cycling Union (UCI) accepted contaminated meat may have caused his failed doping test.
The former Team Sky rider tested positive for the banned substance clenbuterol - which helps build muscle and burn fat - during his victory at the Japan Cup in October and was provisionally suspended on December 18. The 34-year-old Australian was also suspended by Team Saxo-Tinkoff.
The UCI, however, have agreed that "there was a significant probability" clenbuterol from the failed sample came from meat Rogers ate while he was in China, which he stated in response to the suspension last year.
Now free to race again, Rogers, who played a key role in Bradley Wiggins' Tour de France victory in 2012, expressed his relief.
"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," he said.
"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."