Michael Rogers denies doping after positive clenbuterol test

Australian rider points to continued concern over contaminated meat in China

Michael Rogers (Saxo-Tinkoff) insists he has ‘never knowingly or deliberately’ ingested clenbuterol after a urine sample taken at the Japan Cup revealed a positive test for the banned substance.

Rogers, who was road captain for Team Sky during Sir Bradley Wiggins’ 2012 Tour de France win before joining Saxo-Tinkoff for 2013, won the late-season race in Japan but the UCI revealed his failed drugs test this week.

Michael Rogers (Saxo-Tinkoff) has denied doping after testing positive for clenbuterol (Pic: Sirotti)

However, the Australian – a former three-time world time trial champion – has denied doping, citing long-standing concerns over contaminated meat in China, where he had competed at the Tour of Beijing earlier in the same month.

In a statement released today – his 34th birthday – Rogers said: “I would like to make it very clear, in the strongest terms possible, that I have never knowingly or deliberately ingested clenbuterol.

“I can advise that during the period October 8 to October 17, before arriving in Japan, I was present in China for the WorldTour race, the Tour of Beijing.

“I understand that it has been acknowledged by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), as well as other anti-doping bodies, that food contaminated with clenbuterol is a serious problem in China.

“In the following weeks, I will have the opportunity to explain this unfortunate situation to the UCI, in which I will give my full attention and co-operation to resolve this issue in the quickest time frame possible.

“I would personally like to thank those around the world who have shown compassion and understanding of this situation that I’ve been placed in.”

WADA has raised concerns over contaminated meat in China in the past and advises any athletes competing in the country to be wary of where they eat when competing in the country.

A statement issued on the organisation’s website in November 2011 read: “Due to continuing concerns over contaminated meat in certain parts of the world, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has re-emphasized the need for athletes to exercise extreme caution with regards to eating meat when traveling to competitions in China and Mexico.

Rogers, pictured competing at the London Olympics, is a three-time former world time trial champion (Pic: Sirotti)

“It has been shown that Mexico and China have a serious problem with meat contaminated with the prohibited substance clenbuterol, and WADA’s message to athletes competing in these countries remains the same: eat only in restaurants and cafeterias that have been approved by your federation and/or event organizer.

“Furthermore, when eating outside these designated cafeteria and restaurants, always try to eat in large numbers.”

“WADA will approach and study any positive case involving clenbuterol on an individual basis.”

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