Pole vaulter Thiago Braz, who won 2016 Olympic gold and 2021 bronze, banned for doping

Olympic pole vault gold medallist Thiago Braz was banned for 16 months for doping and will miss the Paris Games, track and field’s Athletics Integrity Unit said on Tuesday.

Braz won the Olympic title at his home Rio de Janeiro Games in 2016 and took bronze in Tokyo three years ago.

The 30-year-old Braz’s ban expires in November and he has filed an appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport, the AIU said.

Braz claimed his positive test for ostarine was caused by a contaminated nutritional supplement and the anti-doping tribunal judges accepted by a 2-1 verdict he was not at significant fault, the AIU said.

The track and field investigation unit said it would consider an appeal to CAS after asking the first tribunal to impose a four-year ban.

Braz was “reckless” and acted with “indirect intent,” the AIU said, because he was aware of concerns with Brazilian pharmacies and “manifestly disregarded that risk.”

He tested positive at the Diamond League meeting in Stockholm last July, several weeks before the world championships.

Ostarine is a selective androgen receptor modulator used to enhance muscle growth and performance.

Sprinter stripped of world mark

The sprinter who set the Under-20 world record at 100 metres has been banned for four years and had his record stripped after anti-doping officials ruled against his claim that his positive test for a performance-enhancer came from eating “recovery gummies.”

The Athletics Integrity Unit, which runs track and field’s anti-doping operation, announced the penalties Monday for Issam Asinga, who ran an U20 record of 9.89 seconds at the South American championships last summer.

Asinga plans to appeal the decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Any ruling before the Paris Games later this summer appears unlikely.

“We just want to save Issam’s career,” his attorney, Paul J. Greene, said in a Zoom interview with The Associated Press that also included Asinga and his mom. “He just wants his life back.”

The 19-year-old sprinter who represents Suriname burst onto the track scene by beating world champion Noah Lyles in April 2023 in a wind-aided time of 9.83.

Asinga has been suspended since August, when he tested positive for a banned substance called GW1516, which was developed to build endurance and burn fat but failed medical trials when it was found to cause cancer during tests on rodents.

Asinga claimed he took gummies that were supposed to aid in his recovery. He said they were part of a Gatorade gift bag he received when he travelled to Los Angeles in recognition of being named the Gatorade athlete of the year for track and field.

Asinga said two containers of the gummies revealed the presence of the banned substance but the AIU panel that heard the case said he did not satisfy the burden of proof that the gummies were the source of the drug found in his sample.

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