Vasseur cleared by DNA test
The investigation into drug use by Cofidis rider Cédric Vasseur has crumbled after DNA testing revea
PICTURE BY TIM DE WAELE In a turnaround that will send a shudder through drug testers everywhere, Cofidis rider Cdric Vasseur has been been told that the hair supposedly from his head and purporting to show signs of cocaine use in fact belonged to someone else. The 34-year-old Frenchman has always denied using cocaine since a hair sample was taken from him last January when he was taken in for questioning as part of the Nanterre-based doping inquiry showed evidence of recent cocaine use. Vasseur has constantly claimed that the hair tested cannot have been his, and this assertion has now been backed up following DNA testing. In a statement released yesterday, Vasseur said: “These results show that in the sample there was both hair that did belong to me and hair that didn’t belong to me. The presence of hair that didn’t belong to me in the sample tested reinforces the impression that there was some manipulation of the sample with a view to damaging my reputation.” This development follows a previous disclosure by Vasseur’s legal team that statements said to have been signed by the French rider in fact bore forged signatures. Referring to this and yesterday’s news, Vasseur stated: “This possible manipulation, as well as the two false signatures made on verbal statements while I was detained, are unacceptable and I am forced to demand that as much light as possible be thrown on this investigation.” Hair was taken from Vasseur on January 21 after he was implicated in drug taking during an investigation by the Nanterre court in France into certain riders and staff on the Cofidis and other teams. On April 1, Vasseur was charged with breaking the French laws on the use of dangerous substances, but these charges were dropped on October 22. During this legal process, Vasseur was also prevented from riding a number of key events during the season, including the Tour de France and the Olympic Games.