U.S. swimmer’s suspension reduced from two years to six months

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Madisyn Cox, the 2017 World bronze medalist in the 200m individual medley, had her ban reduced from two years to six months after showing a positive drug test was due to a legal supplement that had been contaminated.

She is now eligible to compete after serving the ban since March.

“I mistakenly assumed that the supplement I was taking was extremely safe,” Cox said in a statement, according to Swimming World. “I had been taking this multivitamin for seven years, had listed it on every doping control form since making the U.S. national team in 2014 and entering the registered athlete testing pool, and had tested clean and without incident more than 20 times during that period.”

Cox originally thought she ingested the banned substance Trimetazidine, a medication used to treat angina, through tap water.

She failed a drug test Feb. 5 and was suspended through March 2, 2020. Her ban was originally reduced from four years to two after a FINA panel agreed that Cox did not intend to dope, though it did not accept that tap water was the definite source.

“Cox is an honest, very hardworking and highly credible athlete who is not a ‘cheat,'” the panel said a press release. “She is, unfortunately, caught in a dilemma.”

Cox was forced to miss the U.S. Championships in July, which meant she had to miss the Pan Pacific Championships in August and the 2019 World Championships, the two biggest international meets before the 2020 Olympics.

Cox was the top-ranked U.S. 200m IM swimmer for the year at the time.

After being banned two years, she sent the Cooper Complete Elite Athlete multivitamin to be tested for Trimetazidine. Both a sealed and an opened bottle of the product came back positive for Trimetazidine, which led to the Court of Arbitration for Sport approving the ban reduction.

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MORE: U.S. female swimmers historically dominant in 2018 world rankings

12-year-old skateboarders earn medals at world championships

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At the world skateboarding championships, 12-year-olds Chloe Covell from Australia and Onodera Ginwoo from Japan earned silver and bronze medals, respectively, in Sunday’s street finals.

In the women’s event, Covell took silver behind Brazilian 15-year-old Rayssa Leal, who was a silver medalist herself at the Tokyo Games.

Frenchman Aurélien Giraud, a 25-year-old who was sixth in skateboarding’s Olympic debut in Tokyo, won the men’s final in the United Arab Emirates. Ginwoo was third behind Portugal’s Gustavo Ribeiro.

The top Americans were Olympic men’s bronze medalist Jagger Eaton in sixth and 15-year-old Paige Heyn in seventh in the women’s event.

Nyjah Huston, a six-time world champion who placed seventh in Tokyo, missed worlds after August surgery for an ACL tear.

Up to three men and three women per nation can qualify per event (street and park) for the 2024 Paris Games. World rankings come June 2024 determine which Americans qualify.

In Tokyo, four of the 12 skateboarding medalists were ages 12 or 13.

Japan’s Kokona Hiraki, then 12, won silver in women’s park to become the youngest Olympic medalist since 1936, according to Olympedia.org. Japan’s Momiji Nishiya, then 13, won women’s street and became the youngest gold medalist in an individual event since 1936.

Worlds conclude this week with the men’s and women’s park events. The finals are Saturday.

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Francesco Friedrich, most decorated bobsledder in history, rebounds for 12th world title

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A week after his first major championships defeat in seven years, German Francesco Friedrich returned to his winning ways to close the world bobsled championships on Sunday.

Friedrich’s four-man sled won the world title by 69 hundredths of a second over British and Latvian sleds that tied for silver, combining times from four runs over the last two days in St. Moritz, Switzerland. It marked Great Britain’s first world championships men’s bobsled medal since 1966.

Geoff Gadbois drove the lone U.S. sled in the field, finishing 18th.

Friedrich, the most decorated bobsledder in history, extended his records with a fifth consecutive world four-man title and 12th world championship between two- and four-man events.

Germany swept all four titles at bobsled worlds with four different drivers taking gold.

Friedrich had won 12 consecutive Olympic or world titles before taking two-man silver at worlds last week in St. Moritz, Switzerland. He was dethroned in that event by countryman Johannes Lochner.

Friedrich has been hampered recently by a muscle injury from sprint training in late December. Going into worlds, Lochner had won four consecutive World Cup two-man races, while Hall won the last two World Cups in four-man.

Friedrich, 32, said before this season that he plans to make the 2026 Milan-Cortina Winter Games his final competition. Friedrich and push athlete Thorsten Margis can break the record of four career Olympic bobsled gold medals that they currently share with retired Germans Andre Lange and Kevin Kuske.

The World Cup season concludes with stops in Igls, Austria, and Sigulda, Latvia, the next two weekends.

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