Randolph Ross, a U.S. Olympic 400m sprinter, was banned three years and will miss the 2024 Paris Games after altering an email to try and avoid a suspension over whereabouts failures for drug testing.
Three whereabouts failures — usually not being present for out-of-competition drug tests — in a 12-month span can trigger up to a two-year suspension. Tampering can lead to a four-year ban.
Ross, 21, admitted that “he altered a system-generated email (confirming an apparent update to his Whereabouts information for the relevant period) to try and avoid a third Whereabouts Failure within a 12-month period,” according to the Athletics Integrity Unit, which handles doping cases in track and field.
Ross said he changed the date in an email to align with an address change that led to his last missed test on June 18, according to Track and Field News.
Ross, eliminated in the Tokyo Olympic 400m heats, was provisionally banned in July, the day before he was to start competing in the 400m at the world championships in Eugene, Oregon.
Ross’ ban was backdated to this past July 1 and runs through June 30, 2025.
Ross, the NCAA 400m champion for North Carolina A&T, is a finalist for the Bowerman Award, the NCAA track and field athlete of the year, which is presented in a streamed ceremony this Thursday.
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