Demonising Justin Gatlin
13th September 2015
A 14-year-old Italian cyclist has returned an adverse analytical finding (AAF) for mesterolone, the Italian cycling federation (FCI) and national anti-doping organisation (NADO Italia) have confirmed. Italy’s national anti-doping tribunal (TNA) has provisionally suspended the athlete after they tested positive for the oral steroid and its metabolites, confirmed NADO Italia in a 28 June statement. ‘Regarding the 14-year old athlete recently found positive during a newcomers race in Sicily, the Cycling Federation call for great caution in forming judgement until the details of the matter are clarified’, read a 29 June FCI statement.
The FCI statement said that it will now examine the details of the case to find out what exactly has happened, before deciding whether to charge the athlete with an anti-doping rule violation (ADRV). There has been media speculation that the 14-year-old is the youngest cyclist ever to report an AAF.
In 2011, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) reduced a two-year ban issued to 12-year-old cart racer Igor Walilko by the International Automobile Federation (FIA) to 18 months. Walilko was sanctioned for consuming nikethamide, which was understood to have originated in an energy bar he consumed.
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