Chris Froome 'banned from Tour de France' by organisers due to ongoing drug investigation

The Brit, 33, would be aiming for a historic fifth triumph in the prestigious race.

Froome is allowed to compete in races despite being found to have too much Salbutamol in his system during the 2017 Vuelta a Espanya as the case – started in September 2017 – remains open.

But according to Le Monde, Team Sky will have to successfully appeal the organisers' decision  in order for him to line-up.

Amaury Sport Organization, who own the event, can use article 28 of its rules to prevent people from competing.

The clause states ASO "expressly reserves the right to refuse participation in – or to exclude from – the event, a team or any of its members whose presence would be such as to damage the image or reputation of ASO or the event ".

What is Salbutamol? The substance that saves asthmatics the world over

SALBUTAMOL is commonly used in inhalers throughout the world and has been the saviour for millions of asthmatics if they are feeling wheezy.

According to the NHS: “Salbutamol is used to relieve symptoms such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), coughing, wheezing and feeling breathless.

“It works by relaxing the muscles of the airways into the lungs which makes it easier to breathe.”

Inhalers are permitted in cycling – so Salbutamol is not a banned substance – and riders are asked to explain if their blood concentration is above the permitted limits.

In the UK, Salbutamol is only available via prescription if you go to your GP.

But there are concerns use of permitted substances are being abused in endurance sports.

But the Tour de France wants to avoid the situation encountered by the Giro d'Italia which saw the Kenya-born star take victory with the allegations hanging over his head.

Le Monde's report adds that Team Sky will appeal to the National Olympic Committee of French Sport.

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Froome will apparently make his case on July 3, from 9 am with a decision to be announced within days.

Le Tour begins on July 7 with a stage between Noirmoutier-en-l'Ile and Fontenay-le-Comte.

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