30 October 2015

Reprimand for ski mountaineer over pregnancy drug

The Swiss Olympic Committee has issued Maude Mathys with a reprimand for use of clomiphene, accepting her explanation that she took the drug to get pregnant. Mathys said that the case was ‘difficult psychologically’, and perhaps the hardest part has been the cancellation of the results of her team mates in relay events.

Clomiphene is a hormone and metabolic modulator used to stimulate ovulation induction, but also features on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) Prohibited List under section S4: Hormone and Metabolic Modulators. Mathys tested positive during two doping controls in March 2015, one at a International Ski Mountaineering Federation (ISMF) World Championship event and another at home.

An Antidoping Switzerland decision confirmed that the 28-year old will receive a reprimand; the loss of results at the ISMF World Championship including second place in the individual race, second place in the team race and second place in the relay. She must also pay CHF455 (€419) sample analysis costs, CHF1,000 (€920.4) to cover costs of proceedings and must reimburse Antidoping Switzerland CHF500 (€460) – a total cost of CHF1,955 (€1,800).

In a posting on her blog, Mathys spoke of the difficulties of having to reveal her treatment in an attempt to prove that she is innocent of doping in order to enhance her performance. ‘I was shocked to learn that one of the substances I take under my treatment to support a pregnancy is part of the Prohibited List’, she wrote on 27 October. ‘There followed long months in order to prove that I never wanted to cheat and that the only purpose of this treatment was to get pregnant. The months were difficult psychologically, pending the hearing and the decision.’

Mathys wrote that she was pleased that the decision recognises her desire to have children and that this was her motivation, rather than any attempt to improve performance. However, she said that the hardest part is that her team results have also been cancelled. ‘The hardest part of the story is that I train with me, my friends and team mates, Séverine [Pont-Combe] and Jennifer [Fiechter], since the team results are canceled as well. I sincerely reiterate my apologies.

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