In the midst of a year rich in sporting events, the MPCC provides a new update on the Credibility Figures. With 11 cases revealed in the first six months, cycling is far from being the sport most affected by doping, but recent events have prompted us to be extremely vigilant.

For seventeen years, the Movement for credible cycling has been at the forefront of the fight against doping. By launching cortisol tests in the peloton as early as 2008, by calling for the banning of Tramadol, which appeared in the mid-2010s (banned by WADA from 1 January 2024), and by requiring its member teams not to recruit a rider who has been suspended for more than a year in the two years following his suspension, the MPCC has sought to play its part in the fight against doping.

With just a few days from the Games of the XXXIII Olympiad, the MPCC is delighted to see so many institutions preparing to defend the credibility of top-level sport. The International Testing Agency (ITA) will be responsible for analysing 6,000 samples over the two weeks of competition (2,000 for the Paralympic Games). By way of comparison, around 6,200 samples were taken at the Tokyo Games in 2021, and fewer than 3,000 at London 2012. Created in 2018, the aim of this international agency was to strengthen the credibility of the fight against doping, in particular by avoiding suspicions of conflicts of interest between national testing bodies and athletes, which arose following the McLaren report scandal establishing state-sponsored doping in Russia.


At the same time, another country is making the anti-doping headlines : Kenya. The increase in the number of positive tests (around sixty since the start of the year) is worrying some observers, but must be seen in the context of the unprecedented efforts made by the local government to “clean up the stables” and improve the country’s image in international competitions. The Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya (ADAK) has spent 25 million dollars over the last five years. However, these efforts could be wiped out by the National Treasury, which has planned a drastic 30% cut in funding for semi-autonomous agencies, including ADAK.

The third most affected country in 2024, according to our figures, is a symbol of the fight against doping. It’s a battle that requires a strong commitment from those involved in sport, from the politics, as well as a considerable financial investment. In France (22 cases reported this year), the AFLD has published its 2023 activity report for the 2022 doping figures. Out of 12,000 samples taken, 105 revealed adverse analytical results (AAR) and 70 cases resulted in sanctions. Cycling, the second most-tested sport in France behind rugby, had a total of 1,632 samples taken, with 0.86% showing AAR.


In the first six months of 2024, there were 11 cases of sporting fraud in professional cycling, including 9 cases of doping. The most recent case to hit the headlines was that of EF Education-EasyPost rider Andrea Piccolo. In March, the American team, a member of the MPCC, immediately suspended the Italian after discovering the use of a sleeping pill that had not been authorised by the medical staff. Worse still, Andrea Piccolo was arrested by Italian customs on 21 June for transporting growth hormones. EF Education-EasyPost has therefore strictly applied one of our rules: to remove a rider from its ranks as soon as he is identified in a doping case.

Although, contrary to popular belief, cycling is not at the top of the list of sports most affected, this latest case highlights the extent to which the fight against doping remains a constant battle. On 12 June, the MPCC sent a letter to WADA to highlight the emergence in the peloton of a new medication, Tapentadol (also known as Nucynta). Much more powerful than Tramadol, this opioid has analgesic effects similar to morphine and can therefore push back the pain threshold.

More than ever, we are asking teams who are concerned about the health of their riders and the fairness of the competition to join the MPCC. Managers, team directors and support staff need to be “players in the fight against doping” to consolidate the achievements of the recent past, remain vigilant in the present and not compromise the future of our sport. As we already pointed out in our documentary produced at the start of the season, illustrating the actions of the ITA and some of our members (teams and riders), it is still necessary to “keep the light on”.

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