Olympic champ Rollins banned for whereabouts rule violation
Los Angeles (AFP) – Reigning Olympic 100m hurdles champion Brianna Rollins has been handed a one-year suspension for failing to properly file whereabouts information for out-of-competition testing, the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) said Thursday.
Her punishment includes loss of all results retroactive to September 27, 2016, the date of her last missed whereabouts report, but doesn’t affect the Rio gold won by Rollins.
The ban would keep her out of this year’s IAAF World Championships in August at London.
USADA said in a statement that the 25-year-old athlete, who led a US podium sweep of the 100m hurdles at the Rio Games, received three “whereabouts failures” over the course of 12 months, which constitutes a doping rule violation.
Rollins did complete eight out-of-competition tests over the course of 2016 and did not test positive.
She also passed all eight in-competition drug tests she took last year.
But Rollins was unavailable for tests on April 27, September 13 and September 27, for reasons that appear in the written report by the panel from the American Arbitration Association that heard her appeal to be mix-ups.
While the panel found that a violation had indeed occurred, in their written decision they noted that the case involved “the imposition of a serious penalty on a brilliant athlete who is not charged or suspected of using banned substances of any kind.”
“This is a first offense, she had been frequently tested for years, and she has a perfect drug-free record, both in and out-of-competition,” the panel said of Rollins. “Her clean tests included an out-of-competition test on May 3, 2016 (six days after Incident One) and an out-of-competition test on October 14, 2016 (31 and 17 days, respectively, after Incidents Two and Three).”
The arbitrators added that Rollins showed “no evidence of avoiding testing, masking drug use, or using drugs.”