Cycling - Scarponi will race for Lampre until end of season

Controversial cyclist Michele Scarponi will race for Team Lampre-Merida until the end of this year after the two parties settled their immediate differences and agreed a deal.

Scarponi was handed a three-month backdated ban by the Italian Olympic Committee in December last year after his ties with disgraced doctor Michele Ferrari were revealed.

The Italian rider, who previously served an 18-month suspension for his involvement in the Operación Puerto blood doping scandal, was missing from his team's official 2013 photos and was not sent to the Majorca Challenge, where he had hope to make his season debut.

However, the 33-year-old has now been given the all-clear to race again for the Italian team after his legal representatives met with Lampre-Merida and reached an agreement.

The team confirmed that Scarponi will now return to the saddle for the Gran Premio Citta di Lugano on February 24 before riding the rest of the season with them until the deal expires on December 31.

Scarponi has agreed to resign from his position should he again break the terms of his contract or the internal ethical code of the team.