July 13, 2005
Dario Frigo arrested after EPO found in wife's car
Frigo faces stormy times
Fassa Bortolo's Dario Frigo won't be starting Stage 11, after police found erythropoietin (EPO) in his wife's car.
Frigo was arrested and is being questioned about the 10 doses of EPO.
He was also booted from the 2001 Giro d'Italia when Italian authorities found doping products in his hotel room.
Raimondas Rumsas of Lithuania faces a trial in November for a similar case arising from the last day of the 2002 Tour, when his wife's car was searched and stuffed with a variety of doping products.
At right, Frigo climbs to Courchevel during Tuesday's Stage 10.
Erythropoietin boosts red blood cell production, increasing hematocrit levels. There is a test for EPO, but its effects linger after the drug itself is no longer detectable, so racing authorities also set a maximum allowable hematocrit for any rider of 50.
Lampre's Evgeni Petrov ran afoul of this limit on Tuesday, and was not allowed to continue in the race.
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» TDF Update: Honey, where did you pack my EPO? from Independent Sources
Why do riders continue to cheat via illegal drugs in this day and age of drug tests, police raids, and tell-all books? Perhaps it is a naive question as it was only the mid-90s that many cycling professionals quietly stated that drug-taking was the ru... [Read More]
Tracked on Jul 14, 2005 12:51:29 AM
Do you think that the French police search every car at the border? Or do they just keep a look out for family members of riders?
"What's that you say maam, your husband is riding in the Tour? - Please step out of the car"
Note to self, don't use my wife as my drug mule.
Posted by: Josh Hallett at Jul 13, 2005 7:50:44 AM
Josh, that "note to self" is funny stuff. Makes you wonder what these guys are thinking. I don't forsee a life of crime for these guys or at least a successful life of crime--LMAO.
Posted by: Trée at Jul 13, 2005 9:03:26 AM
But why were they arrested? As far as I know, EPO isn't actually illegal. Although maybe cheating is...
Posted by: Richard Rutter at Jul 13, 2005 11:48:15 AM
I have to say that every report like this makes me a bit sad. It's obvious that there are still a number of pro riders who are using EPO to top their blood up to the maximum allowed, or just under to avoid a positive result.
Posted by: chase at Jul 13, 2005 12:35:09 PM
He's married to Tyler Hamilton?
Posted by: voodoo at Jul 13, 2005 5:45:12 PM
Because EPO potentially gives an unfair advantage in competition, it has been banned by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI).
pretty interesting: http://www.roadcycling.com/events/tdf2003/epo.shtml
Posted by: voodoo at Jul 13, 2005 5:47:18 PM