Anti-doping court bans Riccardo Ricco

ROME -- Cyclist Riccardo Ricco has received a preliminary ban from the Italian Olympic Committee's anti-doping court.

The move comes a day after the Italian cycling federation's health commission suspended Ricco "for reasons related to the athlete's own health."

Ricco has not raced since he was rushed to a hospital after feeling ill at his home near Modena in February. The doctor who treated him reportedly told police that Ricco admitted transfusing his own blood, which he allegedly kept in his home refrigerator.

Ricco denies the allegations and was preparing to race again after joining the third-division Meridiana-Kamen team. He was planning to make his debut with his new team in the Tour of Serbia beginning on Monday.