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Kenyan marathoner handed 8yr doping ban

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 18 – Kenyan long-distance runner Salome Jerono Biwott has been slapped with an eight-year ban by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) for a second Anti Doping Rule Violation.

The 36-year old had been provisionally suspended by (AIU) having tested positive for Norandrosterone, a substance that is prohibited under the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA) code.

This is the second ban handed to Jerono who was first banned for two years in 2013 after failing a drug test following her win at the 2012 Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon.

Biwott becomes the fourth Kenyan to be suspended for doping within two months after World Half Marathon record holder Abraham Kiptum, 2017 World Champions 5,000m representative Cyrus Rutto and Felix Kirwa were sanctioned.

In the verdict released by AIU on Thursday morning, the WADA accredited laboratory in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil reported an Adverse Analytical Finding (AAF) for the presence of 19-norandrosterone and 19-noretiocholanolone.

-Sao Paulo Marathon

The test was conducted on her after she finished second at the Sao Paulo International Marathon in 2 hours, 37 minutes and 33 seconds on April 7.

AIU further states Jerono was notified of the findings on June 5, and imposed a provisional suspension pending resolution of her case.

She was requested to provide an explanation for the presence of the banned substance in the Sample and was afforded the opportunity to request analysis of the B Sample. The explanation provided by the athlete, according to AIU was not adding up.

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Jerono alleged that she had had an injection of Depo-Provera (Medroxyprogesterone) two weeks prior to the race. Further, she did not request analysis of the B Sample.

The AIU offered her the opportunity to either admit the Anti-Doping Rule Violations and accept an eight year period of ineligibility, or to request a hearing before the Disciplinary Tribunal, by no later than July 4, an offer that she did not respond to.

-Final opportunity

She was given a final opportunity to respond on July 9 with a two day response window or waive her chance for a tribunal hearing, an opportunity that she also passed on.

The failure to respond hence deemed her to have admitted of the violation and the AIU further went on to slap the lengthy ban.

Jerono’s ban now brings to 10 the number of Kenyan elite athletes that AIU has either suspended or banned for doping offenses.

Others are 2017 Tokyo Marathon champion Sarah Chepchirchir, former three-time 1,500m world champion Asbel Kiprop, Hilary Kepkosgei Yego, Samson Mungai Kagia, Olympic marathon champion Jemimah Sumgong and Lucy Kabuu.

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