Russian ice climber Pavel Batushev has tested postive for the heart medication and World Anti-Doping Agency-listed performance enhancing drug meldonium, following a doping test at the UIAA Ice Climbing World Cup in Rabenstein, Italy in January. The 29 year old won the men's speed climbing event at the competition, but has now been disqualified and faces a 4 year sanction.
A positive test for the drug was reported on 27th February and Batushev was then formally charged with an offence on 10th March, with no Therapeutic Use Exemption provided by the athlete to account for the drug's presence. An appeal to test a B sample of urine confirmed the initial positive test. From 29th March, Batushev was placed under mandatory Provisional Suspension. A hearing on 10th April found Batushev to have violated an anti-doping rule.
The Russian faces an imposed 4 year period of suspension, until 28th March 2021 inclusive. Batushev's win in Rabenstein and any competition results achieved in the period up until the date of his provisional suspension have been disqualified by the UIAA.
Meldonium was only recently labelled as a banned substance by WADA, being added to the WADA Prohibited List in January 2016. The drug received media attention last year, when tennis star Maria Sharapova failed doping tests and received a 15 month sanction.
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