1st March 2019

16 Italians subject to anti-doping proceedings in February

Seven Italian athletes were banned for a doping offence in February, one was issued with a reprimand, and six were provisionally suspended, according to announcements issued by Italy’s national anti-doping agency (NADO Italia). In addition, two athletes not affiliated to a national sporting association were sanctioned during the month. NADO Italia issued an 18 year extension to a previous ban issued to Marco Sapigini, which was due to expire on 12 May 2035. His ban will now expire on 11 May 2053. A four year ban was also issued to another unaffiliated athlete.

Those sanctioned for an anti-doping rule violation included judoka Andrea Carlino, who lost a bronze medal match to Great Britain’s Ashley McKenzie at the 2018 Zagreb Grand Prix in July last year. He received a one year ban after proving that his adverse analytical finding (AAF) was due to contamination.

Those provisionally suspended included two young athletes who returned AAFs at the 11th Cross-City Novi Ligure, which took place in January. Sonia Mazzolini, 22, was provisionally suspended after returning an AAF for clostebol; and Valentina Gemetto, 21, was sanctioned after returning an AAF for benzoylecgonine, a metabolite of cocaine. 

Chiara Cantone, a member of Italy’s U18 basketball team, was also provisionally suspended after returning an AAF for clostebol. The anabolic steroid is used in certain dermatological creams, one of which was the reason Norwegian skier Therese Johaug missed the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics after applying such a cream to treat blistered lips. In November 2017, Italy’s national anti-doping tribunal (TNA) partly accepted an appeal from Carlos Eduardo Barreto Silva against a two year ban issued in July. The volleyball player’s sanction was reduced to 15 months.

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