Kazakhstan's Fofonov tests positive on Tour

PARIS Sun Jul 27, 2008 11:06pm IST

PARIS (Reuters) - Kazakh Dmitriy Fofonov of the Credit Agricole team tested positive for the banned stimulant heptaminol after the 18th stage of the Tour de France, the French Anti-Doping Agency (AFLD) said on Sunday.

He was immediately fired by his team.

"Fofonov tested positive for a banned stimulant, we have notified him with the news today," Pierre Bordry, the head of the AFLD, told Reuters.

"The substance is heptaminol."

The 18th stage of the Tour, 196.5 km from Bourg d'Oisans to St Etienne, took place on Thursday.

"He said he bought something on the Internet and that he did not tell the team's doctor. It is a serious offence, he is obviously fired from the team," said team manager Roger Legeay.

Fofonov finished the Tour de France in 19th place overall.

His positive test is the fourth in this year's Tour after Spaniards Manuel Beltran and Moises Duenas Nevado, as well as Italy's Riccardo Ricco, tested positive for the banned blood-booster EPO.

The 31-year-old Fofonov started his professional career in 1999 with Belgian team Collstrop.

This year, he geared up for the Tour with a stage win in the Dauphine Libere race in June.

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