Tags: german | athlete | fails | doping | test | sochi

German Athlete Fails Doping Test in Sochi, Italian Bobsledder Too

Image: German Athlete Fails Doping Test in Sochi, Italian Bobsledder Too German athlete Evi Sachenbacher-Stehle, left, and William Frullani.

Friday, 21 Feb 2014 01:43 PM

By Clyde Hughes

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German athlete Evi Sachenbacher-Stehle failed a doping test at the Olympics and has been expelled from competition along with an Italian bobsledder who also tested positive for banned substances.

The Associated Press reported both "A" and "B" samples from Sachenbacher-Stehle turned out positive for methylhexanamine, a stimulant.

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Sachenbacher-Stehle was a member of Germany's biathlon team.

"There is a positive 'A' sample. There is a positive 'B' sample," Stefan Schwarzbach, spokesman of Germany's cross-country and biathlon teams, told The Associated Press. "And that means we have a case of doping, without a question. It's a stimulant, so it's not EPO or something like that. So there might be a possible explanation that the substance was in an extra nutrition."

Olympic athletes face formal doping charges if both samples are positive, but it is rare for a "B'' sample to contradict an "A'' finding, the AP said.

"I am going through the worst nightmare that you can imagine, because I am unable to explain at all how there could be a positive test," Sachenbacher-Stehle said in a statement reported by the AP.

Italian bobsledder William Frullani was also thrown out of the Games after testing positive for the stimulant dimetylpentylamine. Frullani, 34, an Italian police officer and former decathlete, will be replaced as brakeman in Saturday's four-man event by Samuele Romanini.

Any athlete found guilty of a doping violation faces disqualification and removal of results and medal. The Germans have earned 16 medals, including eight gold medals in Sochi as the Winter Olympics wind down.

Until the current cases, no Sochi Winter Olympic athlete had tested positive. Arne Ljungqvist, chairman of the IOC medical commission, told The Associated Press last weekend that he was not surprised there had been no doping cases to that point.

"It's expected that people don't cheat and those who do are not here," Ljungqvist said, pointing out that there was only one positive case during the 2010 Vancouver Games.

Russian biathlete Irina Starykh left the Sochi Olympics because she failed a doping test before the games started, the AP said.

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