Another Italian cyclist is banned by the Italian Olympic Committee's anti-doping court

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ROME — Three-time Italian cycling champion Giovanni Visconti has been banned for three months for seeing banned physician Michele Ferrari. The Italian Olympic Committee’s anti-doping court also hit Visconti with a $13,000 fine.

Former Giro d’Italia champion Michele Scarponi received an identical sentence this week for seeing Ferrari.

Ferrari was banned for life by the Italian cycling federation in 2002.

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency also banned Ferrari for life this year after its inquiry of Lance Armstrong, whom Ferrari advised.

Visconti’s ban was backdated to Oct. 8 and will expire on Jan. 7, meaning he won’t miss any races.

• Ferrari told Al Jazeera English that he never saw Armstrong doping.

“I’ve never seen, I never heard something about tha,” he said. “He never asked me for information about doping.”

TOUR DE FRANCE: Drawn by cycling’s runaway success in Britain, the race will cross the English Channel again in 2014 to start in the northeastern English city of Leeds and swing through London before returning to mainland Europe.

Tour organizers announced Friday the second British debut in a decade for cycling’s showpiece event, after the “Grand Depart” in London in 2007.

The selection of the county of Yorkshire for the 2014 start also comes after Bradley Wiggins this year became the first Briton to win the Tour in its 109-year history.

Tour organizers said preliminary details of the course route for the 2014 race will be presented Jan. 17.

British cycling has been on a high in recent months, with strong showings for the national team on the track at the London Olympics and huge fan turnout.


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