Olympic figure skater fails doping test

The athlete tested positive for a Clostebol metabolite, according to the International Testing Agency

Spanish Winter Olympics figure skater Laura Barquero has tested positive for a prohibited substance during the competition at the Beijing 2022 Games, the International Testing Agency (ITA) stated on Tuesday.

The ITA said Barquero’s sample showed up with an Adverse Analytical Finding (AAF) for a metabolite of Clostebol, which features on the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) prohibited list.

Barquero’s sample was collected on February 18 by the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) in-competition anti-doping control testing authority during the pairs skating short program, where the 2021 Spanish national champion finished 11th with partner Marco Zandron in the event won by China’s Sui Wenjing and Han Cong.  

#Beijing2022 – The ITA reports that a sample collected from figure skater Laura Barquero Jimenez (Spain) has returned an Adverse Analytical Finding (AAF) for the non-specified prohibited substance Clostebol metabolite.

▶️ https://t.co/f7khzrUJ1M pic.twitter.com/rCdevyyziA

— International Testing Agency (@IntTestAgency) February 22, 2022

The ITA confirmed Barquero had been informed of the case and “has the right to request the analysis of the B-sample.”

In its statement, the ITA added that the matter will be passed on to the Court of Arbitration for Sport’s (CAS) Anti-Doping Division.

Along with Ukrainians Lidiaa Hunko and Valentyna Kaminska, and Iranian Alpine skier Hossein Saveh-Shemshaki, Barquero is the fourth athlete to test positive for a prohibited substance during the Beijing Games after making history as part of Spain’s first-ever pairs figure skating outfit.

While the case of Barquero’s fellow figure skater Kamila Valieva was undoubtedly the highest-profile in the Chinese capital, the 15-year-old team event gold medalist for the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) tested positive from a sample taken on December 25 at the Russian national championships. 

News that Valieva’s sample had shown traces of a banned substance to treat angina only appeared after the ROC team had clinched top honors some six weeks later, a delay which caused particular concern among Russian officials.

Valieva was cleared by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to compete in the individual event in Beijing, but finished a disappointing fourth as the doping case clearly took its toll. 

Investigations into the positive sample will continue, with Valieva also able to request that a B Sample be opened. The skater’s team has suggested the positive result for trimetazidine may have come via contamination for heart medicine her grandfather was taking. 

It was also noted by Russian officials that Valieva repeatedly returned negative tests both before and after the positive sample, which was analyzed at a WADA-accredited laboratory in Stockholm.  

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