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Italian Cyclist Riccardo Ricco Bags Lifetime Ban

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Riccardo Ricco

Riccardo Ricco

Italian cyclist, Riccardo Ricco has been handed a lifetime ban by the Italian anti-doping agency, NADO.

Ricco will also pay €4,000 ($4,850) in fines, plus an additional €378 ($459) in costs.

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“The first section of the national anti-doping court, in the disciplinary proceedings against Mr Riccardo Ricco… imposes a life ban,” the NADO statement said.

The 37-year-old has been serving a 12-year ban that was set to expire in 2024.

Ricco, known as “The Cobra” was ejected from the 2008 Tour de France when he tested positive for a banned blood-booster.

In 2013, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) confirmed a 12-year suspension pronounced the previous year by the Italian Olympic Committee (Coni) anti-doping tribunal that found Ricco guilty of attempting to receive an autologous blood transfusion.

Rico was 20 months into serving a ban for testing positive for EPO-Cera at the 2008 Tour when he attempted and botched transfusing his own blood.

The incident landed Ricco in the hospital with blocked kidneys and nearly cost him his life.

Ricco was second overall at the 2008 Giro d’Italia, and led the white jersey competition the same year.

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