The trouble with Ostarine: Jimmy Wallhead’s
16th March 2018
Twenty three athletes from ten countries, competing in ten sports, were involved in anti-doping proceedings that came to light during the week to 20 January 2023. Cases involved an Australian Sprinter who won a Silver Medal at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games; a Bulgarian national team football player; and six Russians whose adverse analytical findings (AAFs – or ‘positive tests’) were reported as negative into the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) Anti-Doping Administration and Management System (ADAMS) by the Moscow Laboratory.
Three of these historic Russian cases involved two separate AAFs reported as negative into ADAMS. One case, involving Discus athlete Yekaterina Strokova (Екатерина Строкова), involved four AAFs reported by the Moscow Laboratory as negative tests into ADAMS.
This week, UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) announced it would be resuming proceedings against former British Cycling and Team Sky Doctor Richard Freeman, after the High Court dismissed his appeal against a Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS) Decision to strike him off the Medical Register.
In March 2021, the MPTS found that Dr. Freeman had ordered Testogel for a British Cyclist. Dr. Freeman had alleged that Shane Sutton, former Technical Director at British Cycling, had bullied him into ordering the Testogel. The Ruling reals that Matt Lawton, then a Journalist with the Daily Mail, had refused to answer a subpoena and give evidence to the MPTS. The Daily Mail also refused to comply with a request to produce relevant documents filed under Section R35A of the Medical Act 1983.
The Daily Mail and Lawton published a series of articles based around the delivery of a medical package (or ‘jiffy bag’) to Sir Bradley Wiggins in 2011. It is understood that one of the documents requested by the MPTS was an affidavit signed by Sutton held in a safe at the Daily Mail offices. The affidavit is understood to be an insurance policy against any future defamation claims by Wiggins, Dr. Freeman or Sir Dave Brailsford, former Performance Director at British Cycling and Team Sky.
Dr. Freeman’s defence team previously claimed that the affidavit contradicts evidence given by Sutton to a 2016 hearing of the UK Parliament’s Culture, Media and Sport (CMS) Committee. One of the conclusions of its 2018 Combating Doping in Sport Report was that the CMS Committee ‘believed’ that Team Sky used Triamcinolone to prepare Wiggins for the Tour de France, and the purpose of this treatment was not medical, but to improve his power to weight ratio ahead of the race.
This ‘belief’ was based on the testimony of a single anonymous witness, who provided the CMS Committee (as the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee was then called) with evidence alleging that British Cycling and Team Sky used TUEs for performance gains. As that evidence is confidential, it has not been seen by Wiggins or Team Sky. Both strongly refuted allegations against them at the time.
The World Anti-Doping Code contains a ten year Statute of Limitations, which prevents people from being charged with an anti-doping rule violation (ADRV) unless they are notified within ten years of the alleged offence. UKAD initially launched proceedings against Freeman in February 2021, based on his May 2011 purchase of Testogel, which means that he can still be punished.
It is understood that UKAD has not commenced proceedings against Sutton, Brailsford, or any British cyclists regarding the 2011 order of Testogel. This means that irrespective of what UKAD discovers in its investigation into Freeman, it cannot bring any new charges against athletes or personnel based on the 2011 order of Testogel.
Peter Bol, who won a Silver Medal in the 800m at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, has been provisionally suspended after returning an AAF for Recombinant Erythropoietin (rEPO). The Australian, who was born in Sudan, was informed on 10 January. On 20 January, he denied taking EPO and announced that he had requested analysis of his B sample.
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Georgi Yomov has been provisionally suspended by the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) due to an AAF for Dehydrochloromethyltestosterone (DHCMT). The case has not been announced by UEFA, however the Bulgarian national team footballer features on a list of provisionally suspended athletes published by the Bulgarian Anti-Doping Centre (BADC) on 24 November last year. The positive test has been confirmed by his club, CSKA Sofia.
Please continue to send any cases we may have missed or suggestions through to the editor by clicking here. Also, if you’re an athlete, national anti-doping organisation (NADO) or other Results Management Authority and you’d like us to cover a case that you’re involved with, please get in touch! Also – a reminder. The SII Anti-Doping Monitor only features confirmed AAFs (‘positive tests’) or confirmed anti-doping rule violations (ADRVs).
Georgi Yomov (BADC List of provisional suspensions, CSKA Sofia Statement);
Elizabet Tincheva, Stoil Georgiev, Atanas Georgiev (BADC List of ADRVs);
Beatrice-Maria Boldor-Boghiță, Alexandra Dobrin, Diana Ignat Kleeman, Lucian Onujec (ANAD List of provisional suspensions);
Elgay Nafuna Nalyana (AIU List of pending first instance cases);
Yelena Churakova (AIU List of first instance Decisions, full Decision);
Anastasiya Kapachinskaya (AIU List of first instance Decisions, full Decision, background);
Anton Lyuboslavskiy (AIU List of first instance Decisions, full Decision);
Yevgeniya Polyakova (AIU List of first instance Decisions, full Decision);
Yevgeniya Kolodko (AIU List of first instance Decisions, full Decision, background);
Yekaterina Strokova (AIU List of first instance Decisions, full Decision);
Ana Lucia José Tima, James Mwangi Wangari, Natsinet Amanuel, Natsinet Amanuel (AIU List of provisional suspensions);
Arshjit Pelia (CCES Statement, full Decision);
Nicholas Surick (USTA Statement);
Peter Bol (Athletics Australia Statement, athlete Instagram Statement);
Maria Antonieta Ortiz (IPC Statement);
Jose Valdez (MLB Statement)
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