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By VeloNews Interactive wire services , Copyright AFP2002
Italian cyclist Fabio Sacchi, suspended by his Saeco team after banned substances were found at his home at the weekend, needed the products to help his wife become pregnant, his teammate Mirko Celestino said on Tuesday.
Sacchi was one of six riders whose hotel room at Rieti was raided Sunday morning at Rieti before the fourth stage of the Tirreno-Adriatico but the products were found at a simultaneous search of his home.
Amid reports that the substances found were gonadotropina and profasic – which help stimulate testosterone – Celestino revealed that his teammate had confided in him that he and his wife were desperate to have children.
“With Fabio we often speak of the children we want to have in the future,” said Celestino before the start of the penultimate stage of the Tirreno-Adriatico. “With his wife for a long time Sacchi has been trying to make true the joy of becoming a father. To this end the products found at his home are used by his wife to help achieve a successful and serene pregnancy, overcoming the difficulties of staying pregnant.”
On Monday night Saeco officials announced that Sacchi would be sacked if he could not demonstrate his innocence and suspended him (see “Sacchisuspended after substances found in Sunday search“).
Sacchi, and the other five riders implicated in Sunday’s raids, have been added to the list of cyclists under formal judicial investigation by Padua magistrate Paola Cameran. Meanwhile, Sacchi is set to appear before the disciplinary arm of Italy’s highest sporting authority,
Sacchi will appear before the panel chaired by Giacomo Aiello, the anti-doping czar of the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI), next Monday with Endrio Leoni also to be heard. On Wednesday Aiello will quiz Daniele De Paoli, Ermanno Brignoli and Giuseppe Martinelli, now the Saeco team manager but formerly the mentor of Marco Pantani at the Mercatone Uno team.