COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado, August 19 – US sprinter Mike Rodgers was handed a provisional suspension after a positive drug test and won’t race at the athletics World Championships, according to the US Anti-Doping Agency.
Rodgers is a former US 100 metres champion who was slated to race the 100m and 4x100m relay at the world meet that starts in eight days in Daegu, South Korea.
“He won’t compete until the case is resolved,” USADA spokesperson Annie Skinner told AFP on Friday.
The 26-year-old Rodgers tested positive for the banned stimulant methylhexaneamine at a meeting in Italy last month.
In a news release, USADA said that Rodgers has claimed “that he did not intentionally ingest the prohibited substance, however, he has decided to withdraw from the World Championships out of fairness to the other athletes competing there so that they may do so without the distraction of his positive test.”
USA Track and Field’s interim chief executive Mike McNees welcomed Rodgers’ decision.
“We are glad Michael has chosen to accept this provisional suspension, which will lessen the amount of disruption to his teammates as they prepare for the World Championships,” McNees said in a statement.
Trell Kimmons, who was already on the US team submitted for the World Championships as a member of the 4x100m relay pool, will now compete in the individual 100m, USA Track and Field said.
Kimmons has a personal-best time of 9.95sec in the 100m.
Rodgers accepted the provisional suspension pending the outcome of the case, said Skinner.
“We will continue to examine the facts of the case as we move forward,” she said.
Rodgers finished third in the 100 metres at the US nationals in June.
Rodgers’ lawyer, David Greifinger, told USADA that he would continue to look into the cause of the failed drug test.
Rodgers’ agent, Tony Campbell, said last week that his client tested positive after mistakenly drinking an energy drink that contained a banned substance. He did not name the energy drink.
Campbell also said they were still waiting on the results of a B sample test.
Asked on Friday about the B sample tests Skinner replied, “I can’t discuss specifics.”
Methylhexaneamine has been at the centre of numerous doping cases in the past year.
In July, American tennis pro Robert Kendrick was slapped with a one year ban by the International Tennis Federation after he tested positive for the same stimulant at the French Open.
Two South African rugby players recently tested positive for the banned drug and last year 12 Indian athletes tested positive for it just prior to the Commonweath Games.