Cycling: De Bonis falls foul of new doping test

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Italian rider Francesco de Bonis yesterday became the first cyclist banned for doping under the International Cycling Union's biological passport programme.

De Bonis, 28, has been given a two-year suspension and a fine by the Italian National Olympic Committee. The UCI hailed the "historic importance" of the ruling.

A statement from the governing body read: "The UCI announces that following its request for proceedings against the Italian rider Francesco de Bonis for a breach of the anti-doping rules on the basis of his biological passport, the national anti-doping tribunal of the Italian National Olympic Committee has decided to sanction the rider by a two-year suspension and FF13,000 fine.

"The UCI emphasises the historic importance of this first judgement under the scope of the biological passport programme, introduced by the UCI in 2008."

A biological passport is an individual, electronic record for each rider, in which the results of all doping tests over a period of time are collated.