31 August 2021

Bronze Medalist Para cyclist & pilot test positive for EPO

Marcin Polak piloted by Michał Ładosz, who won Bronze in the Men’s B 4,000m Individual Pursuit at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics, have both returned adverse analytical findings (AAFs – or ‘positive tests’) for exogenous (external or ‘synthetic’) erythropoietin (EPO). The international cycling Union (UCI) announced that a sample given by Polak on 2 August had returned an AAF for EPO, and withdrew him from the Men’s B 1,000m Time Trial on 28 August. Poland’s anti-doping agency (POLADA) announced that Ładosz had also returned an AAF for EPO.

The Polish cycling federation (PZKOL) said that it was not involved in coaching the cyclists. It announced that although both hold PZKOL licenses, they are affiliated to the Polish Association of Physical Culture (OLIMP), which leases a cycling track in the city of Pruszków from the PZKOL. The OLIMP, which is Poland’s version of a Paralympic association, has yet to release a statement.

‘If the analyses of the B samples are confirmed and the final decision is issued by the competent authorities, the athletes will face revocation of the title of Bronze Medallists of the Paralympic Games in Tokyo and, potentially, a  four year disqualification’, clarified POLADA’s statement. If that happens, Bronze will go to France’s Alexandre Lloveras, piloted by Corentin Ermenault, who finished in fourth place.

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