Italian Marco Pantani and Germany's Jan Ullrich both used the banned blood-booster erythropoetin (EPO) during the 1998 Tour de France, a French parliamentary commission report said yesterday.
Pantani, who died of a cocaine overdose in 2004, won the controversial race, with Ullrich taking second place. The commission, though, found no hard evidence that American Bobby Julich, who was third, also used EPO, as Le Monde newspaper had reported on Tuesday.
The report identified other riders who had cheated with EPO, including top sprinters Erik Zabel of Germany and Italian Mario Cipollini.
A trio of French riders were also found to have doped with EPO in the 1998 Tour - Laurent Jalabert, Jacky Durand and Laurent Desbiens, the commission's report revealed.
The findings were based on comparisons made of retrospective testing results from 2004 and a list of samples from the 1998 Tour de France and the 1999 race won by disgraced US rider Lance Armstrong, who has been stripped of his seven Tour wins and banned for life. Results from anonymous 2004 samples were compared to named samples from the Tours under scrutiny.