DOPING: The 2020 RS-GP is fast at Sepang: Aprilia regrets Iannone

The Vasto rider is still waiting for the verdict. Two historical cases of acquittal but not linked to food intake, but to ... sex: the footballer Marco Boriello and the canoeist Laurence Vincent-Lapointe, both exonerated thanks to the hair test  


Today, as Lorenzo Savadori, taking the place of test rider Bradley Smith, stepped onto the Aprilia RS-GP with its highly anticipated 90° V engine, the regret over the absence of Andrea Iannone in the garage of the Noale squad became more escalated.

The ruling for the alleged use of Drostanolone, a drug used by body builders to increase strength without increasing weight, has not yet arrived and the Vasto rider is still suspended.

For the moment, the study conducted by Professor Alberto Salomone, an anti-doping expert and Andrea's scientific expert, on the hair test has not been of any use.

The test, performed by inviting Iannone to voluntarily undergo the removal of a hair at a centre recognized by Wada, made it possible to reconstruct his recent metabolic history, seeing as it is recognized that hair grows an inch per month. So Iannone was proved to be ‘clean’ not only in November when the incriminating urine sample was taken, but also two months earlier.

Iannone would therefore have been the victim of unwittingly taking the prohibited substance, and even in a minimal dose, probably through contaminated food. Too bad that so far, no sportsman found to have tested positive for Drostanolone has yet managed to prove his innocence.

So, while the 2020 Aprilia is performing well on the track with Aleix Espargarò putting the new bike through its paces for the Italian manufacturer that has a myriad of past glories in the lesser cylinders and in Superbike, Iannone has not yet done one lap.

"And it would have been very important given his experience with Ducati and Suzuki in MotoGP," they are all saying in the Aprilia box.

Unfortunately, previous cases of an unwitting intake of food are not favourable for the Italian: the cycling champion Alberto Contador tried to defend himself from the intake of Clenbuterol by accusing a fillet of meat.

He was disqualified all the same for two years and his successes in the 2010 Tour de France and the 2011 Giro d'Italia 2011 were revoked.

La Wada does not believe in involuntary food intake ... but in sex!

It went better in the past, however, to those who justified themselves with ... sex: the footballer Marco Boriello was acquitted of the charge of taking the steroid medication Prednisolone, thanks to the confession of his then girlfriend, Belen Rodriguez, who justified the positive result with the fact that she used an intimate cream because of an annoying vaginal infection.

Recently, the 27-year-old multiple world canoeing champion, Laurence Vincent-Lapointe was also acquitted after being found positive for Ligandrol – an anabolic steroid used in bodybuilding to increase muscle mass – by using the hair test ... but not hers!

Laurence in fact managed to prove that she 'received' the doping drug from her partner during sexual intercourse. The analysis, carried out in a laboratory in Strasbourg, found that her partner had taken Ligandrol in high quantities in the period between April and October 2019, then transmitting it to her through the 'exchange of body fluids' compatible with a sexual act.

Ironically Iannone, famous for his female conquests, finds instead that he has to defend himself like Contador. A more accurate analysis of the cases of doping acquittals would perhaps have been appropriate.

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