Italian rider Rabottini banned 2 years for doping with EPO

AIGLE, Switzerland (AP) Italian cyclist Matteo Rabottini has been banned for two years after testing positive for EPO.

The International Cycling Union says three months of Rabottini's ban is deferred to reward his cooperation with the investigation. He is eligible to race again next May.

Rabottini testing positive for the banned endurance-boosting hormone in training last August. He was then withdrawn from Italy's team for the road world championships.

The 27-year-old Rabottini was among several Italian riders in the Neri Sottoli team caught doping in recent seasons. The team now races as Southeast Pro Cycling.

Rabottini won a stage at the 2012 Giro d'Italia and the best climber classification.

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