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Cyclist banned for 18 months following test refusal

UK Anti-Doping, the national anti-doping organisation, has confirmed that cyclist Marcel Six has received an 18-month anti-doping suspension.

Mr Six has been found guilty of refusing to provide a urine sample for doping control whilst competing at the BCF Halfords Tour Races Series on 31 May 2012. He is banned from participation in sport for 18 months from 28 September 2012 to 27 March 2014.

Refusing or failing without compelling justification to submit to sample collection is prohibited under Article 2.3 of the World Anti-Doping Code. Mr Six provided an explanation for his refusal to the independent National Anti-Doping Panel, however the Panel concluded that Mr Six’s actions warranted a sanction be imposed.

The Panel said: “Honourable though the Athlete’s motives may have been, we have no hesitation in finding that his refusal was not based on any compelling justification. To be blunt, even if he agreed to race only at the last minute and under pressure, the fact of the matter is that, if he had time to compete in a cycle race, he had to make time to take the test. If, as was later the case, he wished to put his family first, then the time to do that was before he agreed to race rather than when he came to be tested.”

The Panel considered whether the athlete could receive the benefit of a reduction of sanction under Article 10.5.2 of the Code. They decided that, in all the circumstances, he was able to demonstrate “No Significant Fault or Negligence”, and reduced the otherwise applicable ban of two years by six months.

UK Anti-Doping Chief Executive Andy Parkinson said: “To fail to comply with sample collection is a serious violation of the anti-doping rules. Testing remains integral to our work and the consequences of failing to provide a sample warrant sufficiently stiff penalties.

“The message to clean athletes is that when anti-doping authorities request a sample, athletes need to do everything they can to cooperate.”

Notes to Editors:

The full written decision is available on the UK Anti-Doping website at http://www.ukad.org.uk/anti-doping-rule-violations/current-violations/.

World Anti-Doping Code

Article 2 Anti-Doping Rule Violations
2.3 Refusing or failing without compelling justification to submit to Sample collection after notification as authorized in applicable anti-doping rules, or otherwise evading Sample collection.

[Comment to Article 2.3: Failure or refusal to submit to Sample collection after notification was prohibited in almost all pre-Code anti-doping rules. This Article expands the typical pre-Code rule to include "otherwise evading Sample collection" as prohibited conduct. Thus, for example, it would be an anti-doping rule violation if it were established that an Athlete was hiding from a Doping Control official to evade notification or Testing. A violation of "refusing or failing to submit to Sample collection” may be based on either intentional or negligent conduct of the Athlete, while "evading" Sample collection contemplates intentional conduct by the Athlete.]

Article 10 Sanctions on Individuals
10.3.1 For violations of Article 2.3 (Refusing or Failing to Submit to Sample Collection) or Article 2.5 (Tampering with Doping Control), the Ineligibility period shall be two (2) years unless the conditions provided in Article 10.5, or the conditions provided in Article 10.6, are met.

10.5.2 No Significant Fault or Negligence
If an Athlete or other Person establishes in an individual case that he or she bears No Significant Fault or Negligence, then the otherwise applicable period of Ineligibility may be reduced, but the reduced period of Ineligibility may not be less than one-half of the period of Ineligibility otherwise applicable. 

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