February 9, 2006 – Spanish cycling star Roberto Herras has been stripped of his 2005 Vuelta a EspaÃ±a title and given a two-year suspension by the Spanish Cycling Federation (RFEC). The ruling is the result of his much publicized positive EPO test at the Vuelta’s stage 20 time trial on September 17, 2005. After news of the test broke Herras’ team, Liberty-Seguros, immediately released him. Vuelta organizers have confirmed that Russia’s Denis Menchov of Rabobank will receive the 2005 Vuelta title.
Under current UCI Anti-Doping rules, the 31-year-old Herras risks an end to his career with this suspension. Sanctioned athletes are banned from joining any Pro-Tour Team for twice the duration of their suspension. The Spanish climber has one month to appeal the ruling.