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July 12, 2014 – Former Giro d’Italia and Vuelta a España winner Denis Menchov is serving a drugs ban, the International Cycling Union (UCI) revealed on Saturday.
Officially, Menchov retired last year but the Russian’s name figured on a list released by the UCI Saturday, claiming he was banned until April 9, 2015.
Menchov had not raced since disappearing suddenly from the peloton after abandoning the Tour of Catalunya in March 2013. Russian press claimed he had retired due to knee problems. The UCI said his biological passport had shown some anomalies.
Although he won the Vuelta in 2007 and Giro in 2009, the only results he has been stripped of are his Tour de France finishes from 2009 (51st), 2010 (2nd) and 2012 (15th).
Menchov had long been suspected of involvement in doping and being in contact with tainted Italian doctor Michele Ferrari, although he never tested positive for doping.
The 36-year-old twice stood on a Tour de France podium, in 2008, when he was promoted to third after Bernhard Kohl was banned for doping, and 2010 where he was promoted to second after Alberto Contador was stripped of his win.