RusVelo, the road and track cycling team, has suspended Petr Ignatenko for failing to clear an anti-doping test. The Russian cycling team announced it has fired the rider after he returned an adverse analytical finding for human growth hormone (HGH) in an out-of-competition doping control that was carried out on April 8.
The positive test of Ignatenko is the fifth doping case for RusVelo in little more than two years. It is the team's first HGH case at this level of cycling since the positive test of Patrick Sinkewitz at the GP Lugano in 2011. Sinkewit was later cleared by the German Sports Court after it was argued by his legal team that the hGH test was unreliable. He was later sanctioned in 2014 after the anti-doping agency of Germany appealed the verdict before the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Patrick Sinkewitz, who previously failed for Testosterone in 2007, is banned until August 16, 2020.
The 27-year-old Ignatenko signed with RusVelo after spending four previous seasons with Katusha, the so-called Russian Global Cycling Project's WorldTour squad.
A press release was issued by the RusVelo squad in which the termination of Ignatenko's contract was announced. The statement read professional continental team RusVelo has been notified by the UCI of a possible infringement of the anti-doping regulations by the rider of the team Petr Ignatenko. It was added that the team, staying true to the principles of zero tolerance to any violations of this type, has officially declared all the previously concluded agreements with Petr Ignatenko as null and void with immediate effect. The team RusVelo statement added a rider takes on a range of serious and clear obligations by signing a contract and he is expected to be aware of unavoidable consequences if he fails to comply with them.
In July 2013, RusVelo missed the Giro dell’Appennino and suspended itself for eight day after Valery Kaykov failed anti-doping test for GW1516 and three other riders tested positive for Fenoterol, the asthma medication.
The UCI, the world governing body of cycling, also announced that Southeast's Panamanian rider Ramon Carretero has tested positive for Erythropoietin (EPO) on April 22 during the Tour of Turkey.
Carretero was a part of Southeast's Giro d'Italia squad but decided to abandon the race citing influenza during stage 2. His team tried to replace him with a substitute the day before the race started, but were not allowed to do so. At the end of 2014 season, Southeast lost its title sponsors after a series of positive tests from Danilo Di Luca, Matteo Rabottini, and Mauro Santambrogio in recent years. The team is expected to suspend itself under the regulations of the Movement for Credible Cycling (MPCC) for a period of one week if the positive test of Carretero is confirmed by analysis of his B-sample.
Southeast manager Angelo Citracca said Ramon was the last person he had expected something like this from. Citracca added Ramon Carretero has a special story as an athlete who is representing a country such as Panama and that was more than enough for us.