RALEIGH, North Carolina, (Reuters) – Former U.S. 100 metres champion Mike Rodgers’s world championships eligibility rests in the hands of a panel who will hear his doping case, American officials said yesterday.
Rodgers, the year’s fourth fastest 100 metres runner, and his agent are urgently trying to have his positive test for a stimulant adjudicated by an arbitration panel before final declarations are due for the Aug. 27-Sept. 4 world championships in Daegu, South Korea.
“USADA (the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency) is doing his adjudication and they will determine his eligibility,” USA Track and Field spokeswoman Jill Geer said.
“If they say he is eligible, he will be eligible to compete. We have not removed him from the (world championship) roster.”
Rodgers, the 2009 U.S. sprint champion, was selected to the U.S. team on Wednesday in both the 100 and 4×100 relay pool. His agent Tony Campbell told Reuters on Saturday he had tested positive for the stimulant last month in Italy after mistakenly consuming an energy drink that contained the unidentified banned substance.
Penalties for a stimulant positive generally range from a public warning to suspension for several months.
“Ultimately, an independent panel of judges following a full legal process makes the final decision regarding the appropriate sanction,” USADA spokeswoman Annie Skinner said. The 26-year-old’s second sample is scheduled to be tested on Wednesday two days after nations have been requested to submit their final world championships rosters. Declarations for specific events are not due until much later.
International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) competition officials were not immediately available to comment on declaration dates.
IAAF spokesman Nick Davies said the governing body would await a U.S. decision before commenting on Rodgers’s eligibility.
“As usual we need to know what our member does and then either accept or contest their decision,” he said.