Unnamed rider at unidentified race busted by KNWU in 2019 for a Salbutamol level of 1,900 ng/ml, gets four years on naughty step in January 2021

An unnamed cyclist being busted by the Dutch fed for going a tad too heavy on their asthma inhaler ain't gonna set many pulses racing, I know, so here's the bit that's meant to make you sit up and pay attention: the Froome case started with a level of 2,000 ng/ml. So the question for you here is this: how is one cyclist (Froome) cleared while another cyclist (unnamed) gets sent to the naughty step?

The full Instituut Sportrechtspraak (ISR) decision - dated 11/1/2021 - is here (Dutch, .pdf). Salient points follow:

  • IC test carried out on an unnamed rider at an unidentified race on a date not given
  • KNWU reported an AAF on 30/9/19
  • Rider's salbutamol level was 1.9 µg/ml
  • Max allowed level 1.6 µg / ml (= 1600 ng / ml) per 24 hours and 0.8 µg / ml (= 800 ng / ml) per 12 hours
  • Rider claims to have used 0.8 µg / ml in total - 0.4 µg / ml before the competition and 0.4 µg / ml immediately but before the doping control
  • Dehydration offered as one possible explanation with rider claiming it was 31° C on the day of the test
  • Rider found guilty and given a 4 year ban
There is a 21 day window in which to lodge an appeal (from the 11/1/2021 date of the decision) and I guess that accounts for the anonymising of identifying details for rider, race and date of offence.
 
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An unnamed cyclist being busted by the Dutch fed for going a tad too heavy on their asthma inhaler ain't gonna set many pulses racing, I know, so here's the bit that's meant to make you sit up and pay attention: the Froome case started with a level of 2,000 ng/ml. So the question for you here is this: how is one cyclist (Froome) cleared while another cyclist (unnamed) gets sent to the naughty step?
It says in the decision that the prosecuting lawyer said the Froome case was irrelevant as there is nothing to suggest they are similar. Which leads you to the actual difference. One had proper representation and the other didn't. If you turn up to a hearing without a lawyer you will lose regardless of how innocent you actually may be. There's a reason in criminal trials lawyers are provided for those that can't afford them.
 
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He had a lawyer representing him, but the following is why he was sanctioned, it seems:

'there is a lack of clarity on the part of the DA arising from the amount of salbutamol used by the person concerned on the day of the doping test'.

Sounds like the rider couldn't consistently specify his usage before the race and before doping control and what he has stated is he simply took the maximum amount allowed both times. Gotta be at least writing every single quantity, date and conditions of your asthma down in some medical diary, even simply speak it into a phone recording with a timestamp as if anything came from Froome's case going public it's 20% of athletes do get exonerated and 10% would false positive with Froomes inhalation amount modeled by Daren Austin (pro bono he said) against his Vuelta urine samples leading up to the AAF.

Edit. Translating it, it's easy to see what's happened. He simply messed up his numbers. He's given two statements it reads. One at 0.4 and 0.4 and then Dr Boer on discussing this with him has concluded he actually took 0.8 and 0.8 so well over the amount allowed within the time period he's given he took Salbutomol.



However, Boer could be deduced that the person concerned 0.8 µg / ml (= 800 ng / ml) salbutamol for the
competition and 0.8 µg / ml (= 800 ng / ml) immediately after the competition, but before the doping control.
So in total 1.6 µg / ml (= 1600 ng / ml). Dr. De Boer writes literally in paragraph 1.4 of his report: “The
personal medical situation and record of the ATHLETE documents a justification of the therapeutic use of
SALBUTAMOL. At the day of the race and sample collection the weahter conditons were tropical, while
before and directly after the race the ATHLETE claimed to have applied each time two puffs with 400 µg of
SALBUTAMOL. ”
Quite a simple case really, he had inhaled double the allowed amount in 12 hours at 1.6 µg BUT originally claimed it was only 0.8 µg.
 
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It's almost enough to make you think it's anti-doping at two speeds. Or at least two prices: when you're a wealthy World Tour rider, you're safe, when you're an amateur you're not.

Not really. If you're not well represented, and despite what Sam says I can't see evidence of representation, you will lose. With good representation on both sides the quality of the decision will be raised.

Ultimately the salbutamol, which relies on the amount taken rather than the test levels, is badly drafted legislation and that will cause problems and inconsistencies.

Also the Dutch seem rather draconian. All of the salbutamol cases that went to UKAD resulted in a warning
 
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His lawyer is Lars Westhoff who is a sports lawyer working for Vissers Advocatuur, which is like the Dutch equivalent of Morgan Sports Law in UK really.

 
Froome is freed up to ADRV
now he's left the protected status
that Sky/Ineos conferred.
Yes and no. UCI and others would not want another historical cleansing or what the kiddies are calling "cancel culture". He would be beyond foolish to think he could get away with it outside his prior bubble, anyway and finally jeopardize any legacy he's entitled to. He can bank on prior wins for endorsement deals, free beers....for life.
To anyone that's been badly injured: if you were recovering and thought you could win again would you take the risk to gear up? We know amateurs and Master's racers that have been caught almost always toss out the recovery aspect rather than admit they were cheating so we know money alone isn't a motivator.
 
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