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British cyclist Tiernan-Locke faces doping hearing

LONDON (AP) — Team Sky rider Jonathan Tiernan-Locke will try to explain anomalies in his biological passport after being summoned to a doping hearing by the UCI.

Tiernan-Locke is facing disciplinary proceedings after an analysis of his data demonstrated an anti-doping rule violation, the International Cycling Union said Tuesday. In a statement released by his management company, Tiernan-Locke denied any wrongdoing and pledged to contest the charges brought by the UCI.

"Mr. Tiernan-Locke is looking forward to a speedy and just resolution of these unfortunate charges," the statement said. Tiernan-Locke, who joined Sky at the end of 2012 after a successful season in which he won the Tour of Britain, withdrew from Britain's team at the world championships this year because of the UCI investigation.

The UCI said in a statement that an analysis of his biological passport showed "use of prohibited substances and/or methods," and has asked British Cycling to open disciplinary proceedings against the former Endura team rider. The case will be managed independently by UK Anti-Doping.

Team Sky, which said earlier any anomaly in his results would have been noticed before he joined the team, suspended Tiernan-Locke from all team duties — including training and racing — pending the disciplinary process. But the British outfit offered him its backing while reaffirming its tough stance on doping.

"We understand that the violation was highlighted by an anomaly in his biological passport, in a reading taken before he signed for this team," Team Sky said. "There are no doubts about his approach or performance in Team Sky. This is a team that trains, races and wins clean."

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