Two notable American pro triathletes, Beth Gerdes and Lauren Barnett, separately announced that they have received doping violations early today.
Gerdes, who won Ironman Australia last year and Ironman Switzerland in 2015, tested positive for Ostarine after a race in May 2016. She announced on her blog that she had received news of her positive test in June of 2016, though denies knowingly consuming the product.
In her post she writes, “Following a lengthy and expensive investigation on my part, the WTC (World Triathlon Corporation) has agreed that based on the evidence presented, my ingestion of Ostarine was unintentional, meaning that I had absolutely no knowledge that the substance was in my body. However, without a definitive answer to the exact source of the ostarine, despite exhausting all options, I will still serve a two-year suspension from the WTC, which is the minimum possible sanction without definitively proving the source of the ostarine. I do not intend to compete or return to professional competition as this has not only ruined my career, but my spirit as well.”
She also explains how she believes the positive test came from a salt tablet she consumed.
— beth mckenzie (@bethgmckenzie) February 3, 2017
Lauren Barnett also announced her violation today through her attorney. She, too, tested positive for Ostarine and will serve a six-month suspension. The suspension was retroactively enacted from the positive test date and expires tomorrow. Two separate tests revealed that a bottle she used at a July 2016 race (pointing to her victory at Ironman 70.3 Racine) and a salt tablet she had consumed, both tested positive for the substance.
She says, “As I look for the silver lining in what has been the most difficult and emotional ordeal I’ve ever been through, I am happy that in cooperation with WTC, we were able to establish convincing scientific proof of supplement contamination. I no longer have to wonder how a substance got into my body when I never would have knowingly or intentionally put it there.”