According to reports, Alexander Vinokourov, the general manager of the professional UCI team Astana suspended Astana Continental team following the announcement of yet another one of the team’s riders failing the doping test.
Previously two of its riders were tested positive for drugs. The sample of Victor Okishev taken in the month of May and the sample of Ilya Davidenok taken in the month of August showed that both Astana Continental team’s riders have used the same steroids. The third Astana Continental rider, Artur Fedosseyev’s sample taken in the month of August shows that he has used prohibited substances.
Though Vinokourov is not in charge of managing Astana’ Continental team, it is apparent that he had used his influence to suspend the team temporarily and soon after that Kazakhstan Cycling Federation debarred Astana Continental team from participating in any Cycling event.
Alexander Vinokourov was involved in doping cases throughout his career. He has said that he wants the public to realize that the continental team has no link with the world tour team he further added that apart from the jersey and the name, there’s no relationship between the continental team and the world tour team. Two members of Astana world tour team Maxim and Valentin Iglinsky were also tested positive for using banned substances recently. Sporting director of both the World tour team, and the continental team, Dimitry Sedoun, was dismissed soon after the continental team’s third doping case.
After the continental team was suspended, Vinokourov said that they have requested Kazakhstan’s governing body of cycling many times before to deal with doping issues in a severe manner and also to undertake more measures to ensure that such cases do not happen. He also said that they’re fully supporting the governing body in this matter. Vinokourov wants the young riders to understand that in the sport of cycling, there’s zero tolerance for dopers.