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Jamaica’s Asafa Powell Tests Positive For Banned Substance

Above: Asafa Powell

By the Caribbean Journal staff

Jamaican sprinter Asafa Powell has tested positive for a banned substance.

The positive test came as Powell raced in Jamaica’s national trials last month. The test was revealed as another well-known sprinter, Tyson Gay, was also reportedly flagged for a failed test.

Another Jamaican sprinter, Sherone Simpson, also reportedly failed a test during the trials.

In a statement released by his agent, Tara Playfair-Scott, Powell said he confirmed “that a sample I gave at the National Trials has returned “adverse findings.”

The substance was reportedly oxiolfrine, according to Powell. Both are former Olympic medalists. Powell won a gold in the 4x100M relay in Beijing. Simpson won a gold in the 2004 women’s 4×100 relay and silvers in Beijing and London.

“I want to be clear in saying to my family, friends and most of all my fans worldwide that I have never knowingly or willfully taken any supplements or substances that break any rules,” he said. “I am not now — nor have I ever been — a cheat.”

Powell said his team had launched an internal investigation to “discover how the substance got in my system.”

“I assure you that we will find out how this substance passed our rigorous internal checks and balances and design systems to make sure it never happens again,” he said.

Playfair-Scott said the individual who had given the supplements that triggered the test had been detained by Italian officials.

Powell failed to qualify at Jamaica’s national trials in June, finishing seventh in the men’s 100M.

The two Olympic medalists were part of a group of five Jamaican athletes that returned positive tests. The names of the others have not been revealed.

The news comes just about a month after Jamaican sprinter Veronica Campbell-Brown tested positive for a banned substance. That test came during the Jamaica Invitational in May.

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