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Suriname sprinter blames Gatorade for positive doping test

On Monday morning, Surinamese sprinter and current world U20 100m record holder Issam Asinga was issued a four-year doping ban by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) after testing positive for the metabolites of GW1516 in an out-of-competition test on July 18, 2023. Asinga and his agent claimed the positive test resulted from ingesting Gatorade Recovery Gummies, which were given to him after he won the Gatorade U.S. Boys Track and Field Athlete of the Year award last July.

A few weeks later, at the South American Athletics Championships in São Paulo, Brazil, Asinga set a new U20 100m world record of 9.89 seconds, only to be provisionally suspended two weeks later, just before the start of the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest.

GW1516 was originally developed to treat obesity and diabetes, but is not approved for human use, due to its carcinogenic effects. It is banned both in and out of competition and is not eligible for a Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE). A USADA bulletin from 2019 states that GW1516, also known as cardarine or endurobol, has been found in some supplements, despite being illegal.

Asinga claimed he took gummies from Gatorade that were supposed to help with recovery. He said two containers of the gummies revealed the presence of the banned substance, but the AIU panel stated he did not show proof that the gummies were the source of the drug found in his sample.

According to the AIU, Asinga claimed he took the Gatorade gummies the week before the positive test, and that subsequent testing of two unsealed containers of Gatorade gummies, provided by the athlete, revealed the presence of GW1516 and GW1516 sulfoxide. “The Disciplinary Tribunal found that Asinga did not satisfy his burden of proof to establish that the Gatorade Recovery Gummies were the source of the GW1516 metabolites detected in his sample.”

In making its decision, the AIU Disciplinary Tribunal stated that the Gatorade recovery gummies provided in unsealed containers by the athlete for testing contained significantly more GW1516 on the outside than on the inside, which practically excludes any contamination by raw ingredients during the manufacturing process. They also noted that the gummies were batch-tested by the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF), and that a sealed jar of the Gatorade recovery gummies, from the same batch taken by Asinga, tested negative for GW1516.

The 19-year-old sprinter plans to appeal the ban, which would take the case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Switzerland.

All of Asinga’s results from July 18 onward will be disqualified, including his two South American Championships gold medals in the 100m and 200m, as well as his world U20 100m record of 9.89 seconds.

(06/08/2024) Views: 98 ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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