23rd October 2021

Sports Integrity Briefs – 23 October 2021

• Scientists from the University of Strasbourg, engaged by French Police, have found Tizanidine in hair samples taken from ‘international racing cyclists’, reports a September Study. The muscle relaxant, sold under the trade names Sirdalud or Zanaflex, doesn’t feature on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) Prohibited List. It is understood that French police found boxes of Tizanidine were found in the hotel room of a team Doctor at a three week cycling race in France. Team Bahrain Victorious, who were targeted by Police during this year’s Tour de France, clarified that they have not been notified about the situation. 

• The international equestrian federation (FEI) has sanctioned two people over the administration of strychnine to a horse, Bouzarika. Samples collected from the horse on 14 November 2019 returned an adverse analytical finding (AAF – or ‘positive test’) for the rat poison, which can cause muscular contractions in small doses. Trainer Khldoon Mood Al Sayed claimed that drinking water was contaminated at the endurance horse event at Wadi Rum, Jordan, that one horse had died and 80% of participants did not complete the course. He did not provide evidence for his claims and was sanctioned with a three year ban ending 12 January 2023. The FEI also sanctioned Bouzarika’s jockey, Mohammad Said, with a two year ban ending 12 January 2022, despite his argument that race day was the first time he had ever ridden the horse.

• Two cyclists and a Euroleague basketball player have been involved in recent anti-doping proceedings in Italy. Emanuele Broccolini, who returned an adverse analytical finding (AAF – or ‘positive test’) for ostarine, GW1516 and RAD140 at the Straccabike 2021 on 5 September, has been sanctioned with a three year ban expiring 26 September 2024. Pierpaolo Ficara, who rides for UCI Continental Team Sapura, has been provisionally suspended after returning an AAF for a metabolite of clostebol on 7 October. Riccardo Moraschini, a basketball player for Olimpia Milano, has been provisionally suspended after returning an AAF for the same substance a day earlier.

• Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighter Kevin Lee confirmed that he has been provisionally suspended by the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) after testing positive for Adderall at above permissible limits at his 28 August fight against Daniel Rodriguez. ‘I told representatives from USADA but did not apply for a Therapeutic Use Exemption from the NSAC before my last fight’, wrote Lee on Instagram (below). ‘For that, I truly apologize to the UFC, the commission, my [next] opponent, Dana White, the matchmakers, Sean Shelby and Mick Maynard, and the fans’.

Juan Manuel Luzardo, a Uruguayan Jockey, has reached a Case Resolution Agreement with the international equestrian federation (FEI) that he bears no fault or negligence for an anti-doping rule violation (ADRV) involving his horse, Excellent, and Zilpaterol. An FEI Tribunal determined that Excellent had consumed hay bales contaminated with sheep manure. Zilpaterol is a beta agonist used to increase muscle mass in cattle and is prohibited by the FEI.

Oleg Matytsin (Олег Матыцин), Russia’s Minister of Sport, has scheduled meetings with Witold Bańka and Kirsty Coventry at the 8th Session of the Conference of Parties to the International Convention Against Doping in Sport, which will take place from 26-28 October at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris. Bańka is President of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and Coventry is an International Olympic Committee (IOC) Member and Zimbabwe’s Minister of Youth, Sport, Art and Recreation. Matytsin will lead Russia’s delegation at the conference.

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