9 Feb 2011

Self-performed blood transfusion puts cyclist in hospital

11:30 am on 9 February 2011

The Italian anti-doping body has started disciplinary action against cyclist Riccardo Ricco who tried to perform a blood transfusion on himself.

Ricco, who returned from a 20-month ban last March after being caught doping while in second place at the 2008 Tour de France, is seriously ill in hospital having been admitted on Monday.

Media reports say doctors had informed Italian authorities that Ricco, who's part of the Vacansoleil team, had admitted to injecting blood he had been keeping for 25 days.

The 27-year-old had his house raided in September as part of a wide-ranging Italian police probe into doping and unidentified tablets were seized.