Christian Coleman
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Christian Coleman disputes missed drug test that could bring suspension

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Christian Coleman, the world 100m champion, said he could be suspended after missing a drug test that he believes shouldn’t be a strike on his record.

Coleman tweeted Tuesday that he spent the last six months appealing a missed drug test from Dec. 9. Combined with a previous missed test and a previous filing failure (missing a test for failing to update his whereabouts), he could face a suspension for three strikes in a 12-month period.

Coleman called the Dec. 9 incident “a purposeful attempt to get me to miss a test.”

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU), which handles doping cases for track and field, has not commented on Coleman’s situation. It usually does not until and unless athletes are suspended.

Olympic-level athletes must be available for out-of-competition drug testing 365 days a year, providing their daily whereabouts to help drug testers find them. Coleman has never failed a drug test.

Coleman said the drug tester did not make an adequate attempt to find him on Dec. 9. The tester showed up at Coleman’s Kentucky residence in a gated apartment complex and knocked on his door every 10 minutes for an hour, but Coleman did not answer, according to the missed test report that Coleman posted.

Coleman said he was at a mall, five minutes away, Christmas shopping.

“I have multiple receipts of going shopping then getting food and coming back during this time so I don’t think he stayed for an hour,” Coleman said.

The tester “didn’t even bother to call me or attempt to reach me,” Coleman said, adding that the address on the missed test report was incorrect.

“Who knows if he even came to my spot,” he said.

No phone call was made “per client instructions,” according to the missed test report.

“I was more than ready and available for testing and if I had received a phone call I could’ve taken the drug test and carried on with my night,” Coleman tweeted. “WHY WOULD AIU TELL HIM NOT TO CALL ME?!”

Coleman said he was drug tested two days later with normal protocol, including a phone call from the tester. He said every time he has been tested, he has received a phone call.

Last summer, Coleman was cleared in a case of missed tests when a violation was backdated, meaning the third strike came more than 12 months after the first one.

He continued competing — winning that world title to cement Olympic favorite status — with two strikes on his record from January and April. That meant another strike before Jan. 16, 2020, would be his third in a 12-month period and could result in a suspension.

“I have nothing to hide but it’s not possible to show that if I’m not even given a chance to,” Coleman tweeted. “I support USADA, WADA and the AIU to keep athletes and competition clean and fair. But the system must change.

“This process has caused me much stress, many panic attacks and a lot of anxiety. I’d much rather just share my phone location and they can pull up whenever, wherever.”

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World Alpine Skiing Championships on for 2021 after request to delay rejected

Alpine Skiing World Championships
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GENEVA (AP) — A request by the organizers of next year’s skiing world championships in Italy to postpone the event by one year was rejected Thursday by the International Ski Federation.

FIS ruled that the event will go ahead from Feb. 9-21, 2021, in Cortina d’Ampezzo — the highlight of an Alpine season that faces challenges to find safe protocols for international travel and attending races in Europe, North America and China.

The Veneto region of northern Italy was hit hard by the coronavirus and the season-ending World Cup races in Cortina in mid-March were canceled. That week-long event was to be a test for the 2021 worlds.

“The last month of efforts to come to this solution demonstrates the strong collaborative spirit of the ski family and stakeholders.” FIS president Gian-Franco Kasper said.

Organizers in Italy have said they expect losses of about 30 million euros ($34 million) if the worlds are also canceled. They asked for a postponement to March 2022, which would be only weeks after the Beijing Olympics.

“But we will be ready in any case and we will show that these world championships can change the history of a region despite the current difficulties,” Alessandro Benetton, president of the Cortina organizing committee, said in a statement.

Italian racer Sofia Goggia, the 2018 Olympic downhill champion, said she was “happy for Cortina because it will host the first major international event after the coronavirus epidemic.”

Cortina, which hosted the 1956 Olympics, will co-host the 2026 Winter Games with Milan and use the worlds as a showcase for the resort.

The women’s World Cup downhill on the Olympia delle Tofane course each January is one of the most scenic in the sport with a signature jump between tall outcrops of jagged rock.

The Dolomites venue was awarded the 2021 worlds by FIS after missing out as a candidate four straight times from 2013-19.

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Russia track and field athlete clearance frozen due to unpaid fine

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MONACO (AP) — The program allowing Russian track athletes to compete internationally will be frozen because the country’s federation failed to pay a fine on time, World Athletics said Thursday.

The Russian track federation, known as RusAF, owes a $5 million fine and another $1.31 million in costs for various doping-related work and legal wrangles. World Athletics said RusAF missed Wednesday’s deadline to pay.

World Athletics said it would freeze the work of the Doping Review Board, which vets Russian athletes who want the “authorized neutral athlete” status that allows them to compete internationally, and its taskforce monitoring RusAF’s anti-doping reforms.

World Athletics said both bodies will be “put on hold” until its council meets to discuss the situation at the end of July.

“RusAF is letting its athletes down badly,” World Athletics president Sebastian Coe said in a statement. “We have done as much as we can to expedite our ANA process and support RusAF with its reinstatement plan, but seemingly to no avail.”

RusAF president Yevgeny Yurchenko earlier told the Tass state news agency that his federation’s finances were damaged by the coronavirus pandemic and that it had asked for more time to pay.

World Athletics’ statement didn’t directly address that issue, but said Russia hadn’t indicated when it would pay.

Russia was fined $10 million by World Athletics in March, with $5 million suspended for two years, after the federation admitted to breaking anti-doping rules and obstructing an investigation.

The Athletics Integrity Unit said fake documents were used under the previous management to give an athlete an alibi for missing a doping test.

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