Asafa Powell and Tyson Gay both fail drug tests
Powell amongst five Jamaicans reported to have tested positive after national championships
Healthy after years of injury, Gay, the joint second-fastest man in history over 100 metres, had been considered a strong challenger for Jamaican world record holder Usain Bolt at the August 10th-18th world championships after winning the American trials in blazing times.
He had put down the year’s three fastest 100 times, topped by his 9.75 at last month’s US meeting. Only Bolt has run faster than Gay’s 19.74 seconds in the 200 this year.
“It has been tough for me,” said the soft-spoken Gay. “I have always been a drug-free athlete.”
Following his 2007 victories, Gay appeared set to win his first Olympic individual gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Games but the emergence of Bolt and injuries ended that chance.
In 2009, he ran an American record 9.69 seconds, at the time the second fastest ever, but was never fully healthy at ensuing Olympic and world championships.
He finished a heart-breaking fourth at the 2012 London Olympics but won a silver medal in the 4x100 metres relay.
USA Track & Field said in a statement: “It is not the news anyone wanted to hear, at any time, about any athlete.
“As we approach the world championships, we will remain focused on the competition at hand and winning the right way.”
The governing body said it did not know the facts of the case and looked to the sport’s governing body, to adjudicate it and handle it appropriately.
Jamaican Olympic relay silver medallist Sherone Simpson admitted she had tested positive for a stimulant at last month’s national championships.
Simpson, 28, was a member of the Jamaican team that finished second in the 4x100 relay at last year’s London Olympics.
She finished equal second in the 100 metres at the 2008 Beijing Games and won a gold medal in the 4x100 relay four years earlier in Athens.
“This is a very difficult time for me,” Simpson said in a statement.
“I was notified on July 14, 2013 that my urine sample taken at the National Senior Championship, June 21, 2013 after the 100m finals returned a positive analytical finding for a stimulant, oxilofrine (methylsynephrine).
“As an athlete, I know I am responsible for whatever that goes into my body. I would not intentionally take an illegal substance of any form into my system.”