Uli Fluhme, GFNY CEO, has announced fourth place finisher Elias Montañez at the 23 October GFNY Florida race has been banned from the series for life and also faces a United States Anti Doping Agency (USADA) competitive ban after failing to submit an In-Competition biological test sample when requested.
According to Fluhme, Mexican rider Montañez (Zorros Cycling Club) was in the lead group of four riders going into the final sprint where he finished last, after which he intentionally avoided USADA officials, instead running directly to a car where he pretended to be someone else. Again, he refused to submit a test sample while a USADA official explained the consequences of not complying – a world-wide competitive ban. Nonetheless, Montañez Barros still refused to be tested and ran away again.
In doing so, Montañez allegedly violated USADA article 2.3: “Evading Sample collection; or refusing or failing to submit to Sample collection without compelling justification after notification by a duly authorized Person.”
If found guilty of violating article 2.3, Montañez could receive a four-year ban from the sport just as if he tested positive for a banned substance.
USADA has not yet confirmed or commented on the alleged incident reported by Fluhme.
Without USADA issuing a provisional suspension of Montañez he was able to race one week later on 1 November at the Sadasi Cycling Race in Merida, Mexico, where he finished third.
“In-Competition (IC) testing is and remains important to show force and detract athletes from cheating,” GFNY CEO Fluhme said in a press release, adding, “At GFNY, dopers are not welcome.”
Fighting dopers is, unfortunately, a tall task for GFNY. Even Flume’s best efforts to keep dopers out of GFNY races did not prevent convicted EPO user, former pro and now gran fondo rider Adrian Alvarado from winning a bronze medal at the 2022 GFNY World Championships.
Photos/Media: Punto Media: Darwin Ail