Asafa suffers memory loss

marciadottin, marciadottin@nationnews.com

Added 16 January 2014

16asafarun

KINGSTON – Former 100-metre world record holder Asafa Powell says he did not tell a doping control officer about most of the supplements he was taking because they were new to him and he could not remember their names. Powell, one of Jamaica’s outstanding athletes after lowering the world record in the 100 to 9.74 seconds in 2008, made the disclosure in testimony during a hearing here on Tuesday. The Jamaican sprinter testified that he listed only three drugs on his declaration form. “Sir, these were new supplements to me,” declared Powell in response to a question from Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO) attorney Lackston Robinson. “So due to the excitement of the trials, I couldn’t remember.” Powell has been pleading his case before a three-member JADCO panel after testing positive for the banned stimulant oxilofrone last year. Powell told the hearing that he received nine supplements from Canadian physical therapist Christopher Xuereb, including Ephiphany D1, which lab tests later found to contain oxilofrone. The 31-year-old sprinter said he started taking Epiphany D1 capsules and other new supplements after he and a friend researched them for up to six hours online and found no prohibited substances. “At first, we had no idea what caused the positive test or where it came from,” said Powell who has blamed newly hired physiotherapist Xuereb for the positive test. “But Chris was the only new thing in my life.” Xuereb provided the drugs to Powell and former teammate Sherone Simpson, a three-time Olympic medallist – who also tested positive during national trials last June.  Powell told the hearing he knew he was responsible for what he put into his body, but that “in this sport, there are people you have to rely on”, such as coaches and agents.  “Whatever I don’t know, I can go to them,” said Powell, who left his long-time team, MVP Track Club, in September.  Simpson’s disciplinary hearings started last week and were expected to last for two days, but have been adjourned until early February.  It’s not immediately clear if Powell’s hearings will also be extended. (CMC)

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