Roberto Heras

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Roberto Heras Road cycling
Roberto Heras at the Vuelta a España 2005
Roberto Heras at the Vuelta a España 2005
To person
Full name Roberto Heras Hernández
Date of birth 1st February 1974 (age 46)
nation SpainSpain Spain
discipline Street
Café Fortaleza
Kelme (youth team)
Team (s)
US Postal
Liberty Seguros
Most important successes
Grand Tours
Jersey red.svgOverall ranking Vuelta a España 2000 , 2003 , 2004 , 2005
Last updated: August 18, 2019

Roberto Heras Hernández (born February 1, 1974 in Béjar ) is a former Spanish cyclist . He was a professional between 1997 and 2005 and won the Vuelta a España four times, among other things , whereby the victory of the Vuelta a España in 2005 was initially revoked after a positive doping test for EPO , but was later recognized by a court decision.


Heras started cycling with the local team Cafés Fortaleza . After drawing attention to himself at regional races in the Basque Country , he was recruited in 1996 by Laudelino Cubino for the youth team of the Spanish team Kelme .

After a year he started for the first time for the professional team from Kelme , with whom he celebrated his first major success by winning the Subida al Naranco in 1997. In the following years he won a stage at the Vuelta a España and the Giro d'Italia , as well as winning the Klasika Primavera twice . With two more stage wins, he managed to win the Vuelta for the first time in 2000 . He also finished fifth in the overall standings at the Tour de France 2000 with the Kelme team .

In 2001, Heras moved to the US Postal Service Pro Cycling Team under team captain Lance Armstrong , for whom he rode until 2003. At the Tour de France he became the most important “noble helper” for Armstrong, whom he usually accompanied until shortly before the summit of the tour. At the Vuelta, Heras was allowed to drive on his own account and was always well ahead: in 2001 in fourth and in 2002 in second. In 2003 he won the overall standings and achieved three stage wins.

From 2004 Roberto Heras drove for the Spanish team Liberty Seguros . At the Tour de France 2004 he had to give up the race in the 17th stage . But he made up for his defeat at the Tour de France with an overall victory at the Vuelta in the same year. The 2005 season was similar for Heras at first: After another weak Tour de France in 2005 , he achieved his third victory in a row at the Vuelta and his fourth Vuelta victory overall.

A few weeks after this victory at the Tour of Spain (Vuelta a España) in 2005 it turned out that Heras had tested positive for the blood doping agent EPO ( erythropoietin ) on the penultimate stage . The Vuelta victory was then withdrawn and subsequently awarded to the Russian Denis Menshov . Heras was punished with a two-year doping ban from the Spanish Cycling Federation and suspended from his team Liberty Seguros . The ban meant the end of his career for Heras, as the ProTeam's ethics charter stipulated that a driver who had been found doping could no longer be committed for four years. The transfer of Herras led to the Fuentes doping scandal , which was to have far-reaching consequences for cycling.

After the dismissal of the proceedings against Fuentes, there were suspicions that Heras had only tested positive because he had been injected with EPO-contaminated blood from another driver as part of an autologous blood treatment .

In June 2011 a Spanish court ruled that the suspension and the sanctions imposed on Heras such as the withdrawal of the Vuelta victory due to irregularities in the doping process were invalid. The doping samples were improperly stored and the test thus invalid. An appeal could be lodged against the judgment.
In December 2012, a Spanish court finally ruled that Heras should be considered the winner of this tour, as there was no reason to withhold Heras' Vuelta victory in 2005. The following year, Heras was again listed as the winner of the race. Heras himself had always protested his innocence. In May 2017, the Supreme Court in Madrid upheld a judgment of the lower court, which awarded Heras 724,000 euros in damages against the Spanish Cycling Federation and the Spanish Sports Council.

After the doping allegations, he did not return to professional cycling, but did take part in some mountain bike races.

Grand Tours placements

Grand Tour 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005
Maglia Rosa Giro d'Italia - - 5 - - - - - -
Yellow jersey Tour de France - - - 5 15th 9 34 DNF 45
Golden jersey Vuelta a España 5 5 3 1 3 2 1 1 1
Legend: DNF: did not finish , abandoned or withdrawn from the race due to timeout.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ "Biography of Roberto Heras (Spanish), on www.biografiasyvidas.vom, accessed on May 31, 2017
  2. Fernando Llamas: "Heras dio positivo por EPO en la Vuelta a España" (Spanish), on on November 8, 2005, accessed on May 31, 2017
  3. "" Operación Puerto "ended too quickly?" , from on March 20, 2007, accessed on May 31, 2017
  4. a b "Doping samples stored incorrectly - Heras wins in court" , on on May 9, 2017, accessed on May 31, 2017
  5. Vuelta a España - Doping: Ineligibility for Heras invalid. Yahoo! Sport, June 24, 2011, accessed December 24, 2013 .
  6. Doping News: Spanish court declares Roberto Heras the 2005 Vuelta winner . December 22, 2012. Accessed October 23, 2015.
  7. Race director: Heras is the winner of the 2005 Vuelta . A / S, November 12, 2013. Retrieved October 23, 2015.
  8. UCI ProTour Results - Vuelta a España / 09/18/2005 . Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), Accessed on October 23, 2015.  ( Page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /  
  9. Heras receives 724.00 euros in damages., May 9, 2017, accessed on May 14, 2017 .
  10. Josu Garai: "Heras, un titán en el desierto" (Spanish), on on May 1, 2008, accessed on May 31, 2017