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Archive for  July 2016

Monday 11, Jul 2016

Two Rugby Union Players Banned By UK Anti-Doping

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UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) has announced two Rugby Union players have been suspended from all sport following an Anti-Doping Rule Violation.

Dan Lancaster, a rugby union player from Lincolnshire, was suspended from all sport for four years following an Anti-Doping Rule Violation for attempted use of anabolic steroids. This case dates back to April 2015 when 300 ampoules of “Testapron Testosterone Propionate” that is a commercial name for anabolic steroids were seized at the UK border. The package was addressed to Dan Lancaster, who at that time was registered at Cleethorpes RFC.

Lancaster was interviewed on May 7, 2015 by UK Anti-Doping and was charged by the Rugby Football Union (RFU) with having committed an Anti-Doping Rule Violation for “Use or Attempted Use of a Prohibited Substance” pursuant to World Rugby Regulation 21.2.2 on June 5, 2015. The case of Dan Lancaster was heard by a panel convened by the Rugby Football Union and it was determined that the rugby union player was guilty of the Anti-Doping Rule Violation. The RFU-convened panel imposed a period of ineligibility of three years and six months as a result of his prompt admission. The reduction in ban applied by the RFU panel was appealed by UK Anti-Doping and it was upheld by an RFU Appeal Panel and the ban on Lancaster was increased to four years. He is banned from all sport from 5 June 2015 to midnight on 4 June 2019.

UKAD Director of Operations, Pat Myhill remarked the Lancaster case highlights how important our work with law enforcement partners has become. Through our close working relationships with UK Borders and local police forces, we are able to deter and prevent doping through the interception of packages, stemming the supply of prohibited substances into the United Kingdom. Myhill also commented that the ease of access to substances through the internet is a major concern for UKAD. All too often we see sports people, and members of the public, purchasing substances online with no idea of what the substances contain and also added that he would encourage anyone who has information about the purchase or supply of illicit substances to contact us in confidence via Reportdoping.com.

In another development, Luke Willmott was suspended from all sport for two years following an Anti-Doping Rule Violation for Attempted Trafficking of Human Growth Hormone (HGH). The case dates back to June 2013, when 180 vials of “Jintoprin”, which is a commercial name for HGH, were seized at the border. This package was addressed to Luke Wilmott, who at the time was Captain of Derby RFC. A RFU-convened panel determined that Willmott was guilty of the Anti-Doping Rule Violation and imposed a period of Ineligibility of five years but his ban was reduced on the appeal of Willmott to two years due to the admissions he made in evidence. UKAD Director of Operations, Pat Myhill said a crucial aspect of this case is that the end user thought they were buying Human Growth Hormone (HGH) but it was determined after analysis by the Drug Control Centre, King’s College London that the substance was not HGH.

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Saturday 09, Jul 2016

Richard Driscoll Awarded MBE For Anti-Doping Services

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Richard Driscoll, a leading British Doping Control Officer (DCO), has been awarded a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the Queen’s Birthday Honors List for services to anti-doping in sport.

The Doping Control Officer has worked in the same capacity for the last 25 years. A passionate advocate for clean sport, Richard strives to motivate his doping control colleagues for attaining a uniformly high level of service delivery across a wide range of sports. Richard also works as a Doping Control Advisor to UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) and leads on the recruitment, training and ongoing development of a workforce of 181 DCOs and Chaperones.

Richard, internationally recognized for his work at major sporting events, including the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics, played a crucial role in the anti-doping program for the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games as Head Doping Control Station Manager. He supervised and helped train 60 Doping Control Station Managers, 240 DCOs and over 600 Chaperones. Richard has contributed to the anti-doping programs in over 30 countries, including supporting the development of new National Anti-Doping Organizations in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, the Maldives, Brunei, Indonesia, and Kazakhstan.

On receiving the news of the prestigious honor, Richard remarked he is thrilled and humbled to receive this honor. The DCO said he thoroughly enjoys working in the field of anti-doping and have had the privilege of working at some great events and with some fantastic people who are all committed to clean sport.

UK Anti-Doping Chief Executive Nicole Sapstead remarked we are absolutely delighted that Richard has received such a special honor and that his dedication and commitment to clean sport has been recognized at the highest level. Sapstead remarked Richard is highly valued by UKAD and is an exemplary ambassador for anti-doping, fair play and professionalism.

The UK Anti-Doping Chief Executive said his exceptional understanding of the doping control process, coupled with his humility and a quiet charm, puts colleagues and athletes at ease and he is able to diffuse tension should it arise and also commented his vital contribution enables the delivery of uniformly high standards of testing across the UK’s program. She also said Richard often works with staff that is either paid a nominal amount or work as volunteers and he shows a particular skill and charisma in regularly motivating people and instilling a desire to raise standards. Nicole Sapstead said Richard indeed himself volunteers a vast amount of extra time because he is so dedicated and determined to provide a professional service for athletes and to evolve doping control procedures and he makes an inspirational contribution in doing so to the fight for clean sport.

In another development, UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) has delivered the ‘Win Clean’ anti-doping education program at the 2016 Henley Royal Regatta from 28 to 30 June. UKAD’s Director of Business Services Philip Bunt said UKAD believes that ensuring athletes, and athlete support personnel, are well informed and have the opportunity to make the right choices, is a fundamental part of protecting clean competition and preventing doping in sport.

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Thursday 07, Jul 2016

Jon Jones Pulled From UFC 200 For Potential Anti-Doping Violation

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UFC interim light heavyweight champion Jon Jones has been ruled out of his bout with incumbent champion Daniel Cormier in the main event of UFC 200 this Saturday at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

Jeff Novitzky, the UFC’s vice president of athlete health and performance, remarked Jones tested positive for a banned substance in an out-of-competition sample taken on June 16 by the United States Anti-Doping Agency. Regarded as the No 1 pound-for-pound fighter in MMA, Jones has failed drug tests in two of his past three scheduled fights. Jones tested positive for apparent cocaine use before his first fight with Cormier at UFC 182 in January 2015.

In a statement, UFC said the UFC organization was notified that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has informed Jon Jones of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation stemming from an out-of-competition sample collection on June 16, 2016. The statement further reads that USADA, the independent administrator of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, will handle the results management and appropriate adjudication of this case. It was further added that it important to note that, under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, there is a full fair legal review process that is afforded to all athletes before any sanctions are imposed. The UFC statement also disclosed that there is insufficient time for a full review before the scheduled bout because Jones was scheduled to compete against Daniel Cormier this coming Saturday, July 9 in Las Vegas and therefore the fight has been removed from the fight card.

The statement also reads the three-round heavyweight bout between Brock Lesnar and Mark Hunt as a result will become the UFC 200 main event. UFC President Diana White said the new headliner will be the previous co-main event heavyweight bout between Mark Hunt (12-10-1 MMA, 7-4-1 UFC) and former heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar (5-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC).

The American mixed martial artist served a suspension for much of 2015 after his involvement in a hit-and-run accident. He now faces a further two years’ ban, which would take him to the age of 30 and could go as high as four years for “aggravating circumstances.” He was just returning from a ban of one year hit and run incident and was stripped of the UFC crown by the fight organization.

Widely regarded as one of the greatest fighters of all time, Jon Jones became the youngest champion in the history of the Ultimate Fighting Championship when he won the title in March 2011 at the age of 23. The UFC Light Heavyweight Champion was reinstated into the UFC in October 2015 following his arrest on felony hit-and-run charges. His UFC debut came against Andre Gusmão at UFC 87 on August 9, 2008 and took a unanimous decision victory and won his next bout against veteran Stephan Bonnar at UFC 94 on January 31, 2009 to earn another unanimous decision victory. Jones then went on to defeat former IFL Light Heavyweight Champion Vladimir Matyushenko by TKO in the first round on August 1, 2010, at UFC Live: Jones vs. Matyushenko.

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Tuesday 05, Jul 2016

Former Anti-Doping Lab Chief Accused Of Being Doping Mastermind

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A Russian investigation has revealed that Grigory Rodchenkov, the former head of the Moscow anti-doping laboratory, established a doping scheme in which he engaged in the sale of prohibited substances to athletes.

In June, the committee opened criminal proceedings against Grigory Rodchenkov on charges of abuse of authority.

In a statement, Vladimir Markin, spokesman for the Russian Investigative Committee, remarked Rodchenkov also promised to help athletes obtain a clean doping record. The statement further reads that Rodchenkov purchased these substances in the United States according to preliminary investigation and promised to cover the fact that banned substances had been detected in their samples when selling them to clients. The Russian Investigative Committee spokesman also said the former head of the Moscow anti-doping laboratory could have destroyed the samples to conceal the selling of prohibited substances and avoid criminal responsibility that would bring him a much stricter punishment, than that exists for violating World Anti-Doping Agency standards.

The investigation stated Rodchenkov deliberately decided in December 2014 to destroy 1,437 blood samples despite receiving a letter from the World Anti-Doping Agency requesting that he should keep the samples.

Markin said WADA sent a letter to him on December 9 demanding all probes in the organization, which had been taken over previous three months beginning from September 10, 2014, and those taken later on, were frozen and kept respectively till further instructions from WADA and added Grigory confirmed on December 10, 2014 assuring the samples were kept properly but issued an oral demand on December 12, 2014 to discard 1,437 probes, where 22 probes had been kept by then for less than three months and added the staff discarded the samples that very day.

It is also claimed by the investigation that Grigory Rodchenkov destroyed doping test samples of Russian athletes despite WADA forbidding it to hide his alleged trade in banned substances and avoid prosecution.

The Investigative Committee also revealed Rodchenkov’s sister Marina in 2012 was convicted for the illegal trafficking of substances that could have been used for doping. It was further added by the Investigative Committee that investigators have reasons to believe that Rodchenkov was not simply a perpetrator, but the mastermind and organizer of a number of such schemes. The spokesman for the Committee said there is a possibility that new suspects may emerge in the case of Rodchenkov.

The Investigations Committee has sent papers to the Prosecutor-General’s Office for questioning the ex-chief of the Russian anti-doping lab, who is currently living in the United States.

In Mid-May, the New York Times published an interview with Grigory Rodchenkov, who claimed that the sports authorities of Russia had allegedly prepared a special doping program for national athletes in order to win more medals at the home Winter Olympics in Sochi in 2014. Grigory added banned substances were taken by some Russian Olympic gold medalists. The former anti-doping official announced his readiness to offer evidence to WADA and the International Olympic Committee. He also remarked he can also share evidence about the need to re-check the doping samples from the 2014 Winter Olympics that are kept in Lausanne.

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Sunday 03, Jul 2016

Russia To Tighten Responsibility For Doping Violations

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Russian President Vladimir Putin has remarked the country will tighten the responsibility for doping abuse by athletes. Putin added law enforcers will be empowered to investigate such cases and also commented that the responsibility must be tightened.

Putin remarked he had discussed the issue with the government and said we have made a decision to support amendments to tighten legislation: to enhance responsibility and to adopt legislation allowing the use of detective and policing methods to let our law enforcers use investigative methods to expose the use and proliferation of doping substances. The Russian President said he also hopes a future State Duma would support the amendments.

Putin said the country is thankful to the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) commenting on the situation around accusations of doping abuse by Russian athletes. The Russian head of the state promised to study information provided by WADA on doping among Russian athletes attentively. Putin said we should be thankful to our counterparts from the World Anti-Doping Agency and should treat the information they have provided in a most serious way. The President added Russia has always fought against doping at state level and will continue doing it. Putin also commented we hope the information we will be receiving ourselves or will be getting otherwise will be unbiased and said this is the sphere where conclusions should not be made on the basis of rumors or simply suspicions.

Putin stressed it is inadmissible to rely on the words of people who say it was them to commit violations and spread doping. He added it is them who are violators and who are responsible for this situation. Putin went on to say that the Russian Prosecutor General’s Office and the Investigative Committee is looking into the accusations presently.

Allegations against Russian athletes started to emerge in November when the country’s athletics and anti-doping bodies were accused by WADA of massively breaching anti-doping rules. Last November, the track and field team of Russia was suspended after doping allegations. The decision of the world governing body of athletics to suspend Russia’s track and field team was upheld by the International Olympic Committee that meant Russia track team was banned from this summer’s Olympic Games in Rio.

The IAAF later took a soft stance on clean Russian athletes and said they can submit individual applications to compete in tournaments. The IAAF said on its official website a rule amendment was also passed which means that if there are any individual athletes who can clearly and convincingly show that they are not tainted by the Russian system because they have been outside the country and subject to other effective anti-doping systems, then they should be able to apply for permission to compete in international competitions, not for Russia but as a neutral athlete.

Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko wrote an open letter to the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) head Sebastian Coe in which he remarked the athletes of Russia must not be singled out as the only ones to be punished for a problem that is widely acknowledged to go far beyond our country’s borders. Mutko added Russian sport is healthy and clean, and not like it is shown abroad.

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Friday 01, Jul 2016

Russian Sculls Team Banned From Rio Olympics

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World rowing’s ruling body has announced on Thursday that the quadruple sculls team of Russia has been disqualified from the Rio de Janeiro Olympics for a doping violation. The team will now be replaced at the games by New Zealand.

The 36-year-old is the 2004 Athens Olympic Games gold medalist and two-time European champion.

The World Rowing Federation revealed Trimetazidine, a banned substance, was found in a urine sample given by rower Sergey Fedorovtsev in an out-of-competition test on May 17. Sergey competed a week later at the final Olympic qualifying regatta in Switzerland, where Russia finished first to qualify for Rio. The World Rowing Federation, FISA, remarked the B sample was opened on 30 June 2016 in the presence of the rower and the subsequent analysis confirmed the result and therefore it is considered that an anti-doping rule violation has taken place.

The federation said the results of all competitions in which the rower participated after 17 May 2016 are therefore automatically disqualified as Fedorovtsev, who won a gold medal in quadruple sculls at the 2004 Athens Olympics, had provided a positive doping test.

New Zealand that finished third behind Russia and Canada in the qualifying event will replace the Russian crew in Rio. Canada also qualified by finishing second and will join the top eight crews who secured their Olympic places at the 2015 world championships, held in France.

In another development, about 10 Russian field and track athletes sent their individual applications on Tuesday to the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) requesting the right to take part in the 2016 Olympics, said Mikhail Butov, the secretary general of the All-Russia Athletics Federation (ARAF). Russian woman pole vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva, winner of two Olympic gold medals, was one of those to file an application at the International Association of Athletic Federations for participation in the 2016 Olympics in Brazil

A few days back, Alexandra Brilliantova, the head of the legal department of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC), remarked the interests of the Russian field and track athletes would be represented by the Russian Olympic Committee at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Switzerland’s Lausanne.

The Russian Olympic Committee has employed the services of British firm Morgan Sports Law to represent them at CAS. The ROC hope to have the suspension by the world governing body of athletics overturned in time for Russian athletes to be able to compete at Rio 2016. The London-based company has recently represented a number of clients at CAS against the IAAF. It recently successfully led an appeal to CAS from Tatyana Andrianova against the All-Russia Athletic Federation and the IAAF against a decision to strip her of the bronze medal she won in the 800 meters at the 2005 World Championships following a re-analysis of her urine sample that had shown traces of banned performance-enhancing drugs. Morgan Sports Law also successfully appealed to CAS on behalf of Belarus’ Olympic hammer silver medalist Vadim Devyatovskiy to have a lifetime ban imposed by the athletics’ world governing body from the sport lifted, despite Vadim been involved in several doping scandals during his career.

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