British cyclist Simon Yates, who could be a strong contender at the upcoming Rio Olympics, has failed a drug test, although his team have claimed it to be an "administrative error". Yates tested positive for Terbutaline – a banned substance used as an asthma inhaler – after a competition ride between Paris and Nice on 12 March.
His team took complete responsibility of the failed drug test and said the doctor was not informed about Yates's ongoing treatment for asthma and hence failed to apply for a Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE).
"This is solely based on a human error that the doctor in question has taken full responsibility for," Orica said, extending their support to Yates. Riding along with his twin brother Adam, the 23-year-old from Bury is one of the brightest prospects in the British road cycling team to contest in the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Orica added that they were submitting all evidence to the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) – the sport's governing body – to clarify the situation.
Meanwhile, Yates finished seventh overall at the Paris-Nice race and was subsequently selected for the Olympic academy programme at the age of 18. With just over three months to go for the Rio Olympics, the timing of the failed test could not be any worse for British Cycling.
A spokesman from the internationally recognised governing body of cycle sport in the UK told Daily Mail: "British cycling can confirm that it has been notified by the UCI of a potential anti-doping rule violation against a British rider based on an analysis of a sample provided in competition.
"As with any other doping violation charge at this level, those proceedings will be managed independently of British Cycling by the UCI."