12th November 2019

Athlete provisionally suspended under FEI human anti-doping rules

A Canadian Jumping athlete who tested positive for a prohibited substance at the Pan-American Games in Lima (PER) in August this year has been provisionally suspended by the FEI. A sample taken from athlete Nicole Walker, who was a member of the fourth-placed Canadian team and also finished fourth with Falco Van Spieveld in the individual final, has tested positive for Benzoylecgonine, a metabolite of cocaine, which is a prohibited substance under the FEI’s Anti-Doping Rules for Human Athletes (ADRHA). The sample was taken on 7 August, the day of the team final in Lima.

The athlete has the option to request a preliminary hearing before the FEI Tribunal to apply for the lifting of the Provisional Suspension. Disqualification of the athlete is a separate proceedings that is part of the results management process dealt with by Panam Sports, the organiser of the Pan-American Games. The athlete has exercised her right to request a hearing before the Panam Sports Disciplinary Commission.

Once the Disciplinary Commission has made a decision on the disqualification of the athlete, and team Canada’s final placing, the FEI will be in a position to make any necessary reallocation of the Olympic quota place. Details on this case can be found here. In order to maintain the integrity of the ongoing legal process, the FEI will not comment further on this case at this time.


Tokyo 2020 Olympic quota places were available to the three best ranked teams from Groups D (North America) and/or E (Central & South America) at the Pan-American Games 2019, excluding the teams already qualified. The three teams that earned qualification in Lima were Brazil, Mexico and Canada.

Under Article 11.4 of the Panam Sports Anti-Doping Rules, an anti-doping violation by a member of a team (outside team sports) also leads to disqualification of the result obtained by the team in that competition. Under the terms of Article 10.2.2 of the Panam Sports Anti-Doping Rules, responsibility for results management in terms of sanctions beyond the event itself shall be referred to the applicable International Federation. This means that any period of ineligibility would be imposed by the FEI.

• This media release was published by the international equestrian federation (FEI) on 12 November 2019. Click here for the original.

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