Wiggins’ TUE use questioned

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Published on Sep 25, 2016 12:54 PM IST
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LONDON: One of British cycling great Bradley Wiggins’ former team doctors has expressed his “surprise” at the decision to allow him to use a triamcinolone ahead of three major races.

Prentice Steffen questioned the move by the International Cycling Union to grant Wiggins a Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) for the powerful corticosteroid triamcinolone, which he was permitted to take just days before the 2012 Tour de France, which he won, as well as the 2011 Tour and the 2013 Giro d’Italia.

Steffen was multiple Olympic champion Wiggins’s doctor at Garmin Slipstream, with whom he finished fourth in the 2009 Tour de France before the Briton joined Team Sky.

Wiggins’s TUE history was made public last week when his medical records were leaked.

Steffen told the BBC’s Newsnight programme on Friday the leaked details of Wiggins’s TUEs did not “look good”.

“I was surprised to see there were TUEs documented for intramuscular triamcinolone just before three major events — two Tours de France and one Tour d’Italia,” Steffen said.

“You do have to think it is kind of coincidental that a big dose of intramuscular long-acting corticosteroids would be needed at that ... exact time before the most important race of the season.

“I would say certainly now in retrospect it doesn’t look good, it doesn’t look right from a health or sporting perspective.”

A cyber espionage group called “Fancy Bears”, which is believed to be Russian, has been leaking medical data about famous athletes after targeting records held by the World AntiDoping Agency.

American tennis stars Serena and Venus Williams, American gymnast Simone Biles and Wiggins’s Team Sky teammate Chris Froome have also been the subject of leaks.

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