MADRID – British cyclist Chris Froome, currently under investigation for failing a doping test for performance-enhancing substances during the most recent Vuelta a España, announced on Monday that the Spanish Ruta del Sol will be his debut race for the 2018 season, Team Sky said on its website.
The Ruta del Sol, which Froome won in 2015, is scheduled to begin on Feb. 14, with a route between Mijas and Granada in Spain’s Andalusia region, ending Feb. 18 with an individual time trial in Barbate.
Regarding allegations that Froome used banned substances during last summer’s Vuelta a España, the British cyclist said “I’m confident that we will be able to get to the bottom of what has happened and I’m working hard with the team to do that.”
“Obviously I understand that this situation has created a lot of uncertainty. I completely get why there has been so much interest and speculation,” he added.
In the last week of the Vuelta a España, which Froome ended up winning, a drug test showed he had levels of the asthma medication salbutamol that were double the allowed amount, and he risks being disqualified and suspended.
Team Sky’s statement said on Monday the team had been “providing information to the UCI regarding Chris’s use of his asthma medication at last year’s Vuelta a España.”
Froome can, however, compete without restrictions until the investigation is resolved, although the International Cycling Union’s (UCI) president, David Lapprtient, has asked the British team not to compete while the case is still open.