2021 Gran Fondo Garda Bottecchia champion Thomas Bergamini, 33 years-old, has been suspended by the Italian National Anti-Doping Organization (NADO) after testing positive for the banned substances Clostebol Metabolite and Testosterone (non-natural) on 8 May 2021.

On 14 March 2021 Bergamini (BIKE AND FUN TEAM) outsprinted two breakaway companions to win the second edition of Gran Fondo Garda Bottecchia in Northern Italy on the shores of Lake Garda.  More recently, at Gran Fondo del Penice on 6 June 2021 he finished 10th in the Medio Fondo. 

Clostebol is a steroid that mimics testosterone, but unlike testosterone it does not break down into estrogen, which is counterproductive to muscle growth.  Basically, Clostebol keeps testosterone levels high, estrogen low and leaves little trace – making it ideal for athletes trying stealthily add muscle.

Bergamini is the second amateur Italian cyclist to test positive for Clostebol recently. In 2019 Italian National Gran Fondo Champion Marco Larossa was banned from the sport for two years, until 31 July 2021, after also testing positive for Clostebol and Testosterone.

Clostebol use by amateur cyclists is not limited to Italy though, 42 year-old American cyclist Michel Carrillo tested positive for the banned substance (and four others including EPO) in 2018 and received a four-year ban for violating the anti-doping rule. 

At press time, the BIKE AND FUN TEAM has not commented on Bergamini’s suspension and NADO has yet to set a hearing date. 

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