Cyclist cleared to compete after follow-up blood test

LONDON -- Rob Hayles was cleared to return to competitive cycling Friday after an irregular blood test forced him to sit out the recent world track championships.

The former world champion was sidelined from the event in Manchester, England, when a blood test showed a hematocrit level to be just over 50 percent, which can indicate the presence of the banned blood-booster EPO.

A follow-up test showed a reduced level and the International Cycling Union cleared him to compete.