Road To The Olympic Games

Spanish cyclist tests positive for EPO

Spanish cyclist Maria Isabel Moreno was banned from Beijing Olympics after positive EPO test.

Spanish cyclist Maria Isabel Moreno has been kicked out of the Beijing Olympics after a positive drug test.

EPO, or erythropoietin, stimulates the production of red blood cells, which increases an athlete's aerobic capacity and muscle endurance.

The International Olympic Committee said Monday that Moreno was tested in the athletes' village on July 31 and left the country later that day after learning the result. Spanish media have reported that the 27-year-old rider left the Games for "personal reasons."

Eugenio Bermudez, secretary general of the Spanish cycling federation, admitted Moreno's backup "B" sample returned positive Sunday night.

Moreno, who was expelled from the Games by the IOC, was scheduled to compete in the women's road race and individual time trial.

Moreno is the first athlete to fail a drug test during the official Olympic doping control period.

Spain's Samuel Sanchez took the gold medal in the men's road race on Saturday.