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Former Team Sky doctor banned for life

Geert Leinders pictured in 2013. Credit: PA

Former Team Sky doctor Geert Leinders has been banned from cycling for life for multiple doping violations, the United States Anti-Doping Agency has announced.

Leinders was banned for violations committed while he was the chief team doctor and a director of the Rabobank cycling team between 1996 and 2009.

Leinders worked for Sky on a freelance basis in 2011 and 2012 and team principal Sir Dave Brailsford later described it as a mistake.

The USADA said in a statement: "After a hearing at which the detailed evidence, including eyewitness testimony, corroborating documentation and an expert analysis of abnormal blood values of cyclists was presented, the independent arbitration panel found that Leinders possessed, trafficked, and administered banned performance-enhancing substances and methods without any legitimate medical need, including EPO, blood transfusion paraphernalia, testosterone, insulin, DHEA, LH and corticosteroids to athletes under his care, and was complicit in other anti-doping rule violations."

The USADA said it had discovered evidence of doping by Rabobank during the course of an investigation in 2012, and worked with its equivalent organisations in Denmark and Holland to bring Leinders to account.

Cavendish salutes young sprinter ace

Mark Cavendish signalled his admiration of young rival Fernando Gaviria after the Colombian outpaced him again to win stage three of the Tour de San Luis.

For the second time this week in Argentina, 20-year-old Gaviria had Cavendish in his slipstream as he crossed the line first, this time at the end of the 176.3 kilometres the riders raced from Concaran to Juana Koslay.

Gaviria, riding for his national team, burst clear inside the final quarter of a mile and held off second-placed Cavendish, a serial winner of sprints at the highest level in world cycling.

The beaten Briton, from the Etixx-Quick Step team, wrote on Twitter: "Well, 2nd again in @TourSanLuis to @77Gaviria. He has this phenomenal acceleration that's hard to close a gap to.. Impressive. Congrats!"

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First African team to compete in Tour de France

Team MTN-Qhubeka competed the 2014 Vuelta. Credit: PA

Team MTN-Qhubeka will become the first African cycling team to compete in the Tour de France.

Africa's first UCI Pro Continental Cycling Team confirmed on their official Twitter feed this morning they have received a wildcard for the 2015 tour.

The interest in our team has been going to incredible heights. In South Africa the Tour de France is everything and once we get there, race it and do well, and show the potential and the talent, I think that it will open doors for other riders.

For me, that is the most important thing. We don’t want to be the only African Pro Continental team. We want to pioneer change. Could you imagine and Ethiopian team or an Algerian team or an Eritrean just to show what the potential is? We hope that the Tour de France and our involvement in that will grow and get more people into cycling

– MTN-Qhubeka team boss Doug Ryder speaking to cyclingnews.com

Leading cycling teams unite to help sport grow

Brailsford believes 'collaboration is the cornerstone to positive change' Credit: PA

Cycling's leading teams have announced the creation of Velon - a UK-based joint venture intended to drive the future development and growth of the sport.

Team Sky principal Sir Dave Brailsford played a key role in the formation of the new group, which sees Sky team up with Belkin Pro Cycling, BMC Racing Team, Garmin-Sharp, Lampre-Merida, Lotto-Belisol, Omega Pharma-Quick-Step, Orica-GreenEDGE, Team Giant-Shimano, Tinkoff-Saxo and Trek Factory Racing.

Brailsford said: "Collaboration is the cornerstone to positive change and this is very exciting for professional cycling. It's a big step towards the sport reaching its full potential.

"The teams involved in creating Velon have come together with a powerful shared vision to optimise the sport and develop new ways for it to grow.

"If the teams unite and work collectively to make cycling better to watch and easier to understand, it's to everyone's benefit. It will encourage more fans to follow the sport."

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Lance Armstrong fails in 'Beer Mile' race

Lance Armstrong's body didn't react as well to alcohol. Credit: PA

Former cyclist Lance Armstrong was no stranger to pumping performance enhancing drugs into his body, but alcohol certainly wasn't one of them.

The disgraced American accepted an invitation to participate in a qualifying race for the Beer Mile World Championships taking place in Austin, Texas, next month.

Runners are expected to down four beers during the race, with a 400 meter run between each one, but Armstrong felt unable to continue after his first beer.

"One and done," he told Runner's World after refusing to continue. "That was not what I expected."

Double gold on the track for GB

Ed Clancy claimed a gold and bronze medal. Credit: PA

Great Britain claimed three medals on the second day of the UEC Elite Track European Championships in Guadeloupe.

Ed Clancy, Jon Dibben, Owain Doull and Andy Tennant beat Germany's men by almost a second in the team pursuit to clinch gold, while Katie Archibald, Elinor Barker, Joanna Rowsell and Laura Trott defeated the Russian team by nearly seven seconds in the women's final.

There was a bronze medal for Clancy in the men's scratch race as the four-time world champion finished third behind Otto Vergaerde of Belgium and Spain's Eloy Teruelrovira.

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