Banned Belgian rider Tom Boonen is appealing to French sports authorities for permission to ride in the Tour de France after a court west of Paris said it didn't have jurisdiction in the case.
Boonen is seeking to overturn a ban by Tour organizers after he tested positive twice for cocaine in less than a year. The race starts Saturday.
Boonen's Quick Step team said in a statement released Tuesday that they had sought a ruling from the French Arbitration Chamber for Sport, which falls under France's national Olympic committee.
A French court in Nanterre opened a hearing last week into an appeal by Boonen, but the court ruled Tuesday that it did not have the authority to judge the case.
Tour organizer ASO banned Boonen after he tested positive for cocaine use in April. Cycling's governing body, the UCI, decided not to take action against him because the test came during a rest period between races. The 28-year-old rider also missed the Tour last year because of another positive cocaine test in May 2008.
The three-week Tour de France runs July 4-26.
Boonen's absence would be a blow to the Quick Step team. He won the Paris-Roubaix event for the third time this season.
In 2007, he won the Tour's green jersey as best sprinter.