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Tour de France Champ Contador Is Cleared of Doping, El Pais Says

Tour de France champion Alberto Contador was cleared of doping after failing a drug test at July’s race, according to El Pais newspaper and other Spanish media.

The Spanish cycling federation canceled its Jan. 26 proposal for a one-year ban after considering final arguments by Contador’s legal team, El Pais reported on its website, citing unidentified sources close to the four-person panel responsible for making the decision.

Juan Carlos Castano, the federation president, said by telephone that he couldn’t confirm the reports and doesn’t expect a definitive decision until tomorrow. Contador’s lawyer Andy Ramos and spokesman Jacinto Vidarte said they hadn’t received notification of any decision.

Contador blames eating contaminated beef for testing positive for the banned stimulant clenbuterol on the last rest day of the 2010 race. The test found he had 50 picograms per milliliter of clenbuterol in his body. A picogram is one trillionth of a gram.

Cycling’s ruling body, the International Cycling Union or UCI, and the World Anti-Doping Agency can appeal the federation’s verdict at the Lausanne, Switzerland-based Court of Arbitration for Sport, a process that could take months.

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