December 21, 2017
USADA announced today that Jonathan Sanford of Conyers, Ga. an athlete in the sport of track and field, has accepted a one-year sanction for his anti-doping rule violations while a member of the Thinking Feet Track Club.
In 2016, USADA obtained non-analytical evidence that Sanford, 27, used and possessed a dietary supplement, which clearly indicated that it contained ostarine, from April 2016 through May 2016. Ostarine is a non-Specified Substance in the class of Anabolic Agents and is prohibited at all times under the USADA Protocol for Olympic and Paralympic Movement Testing, the United States Olympic Committee National Anti-Doping Policies, and the International Association of Athletics Federations Anti-Doping Rules, all of which have adopted the World Anti-Doping Code (the Code) and the World Anti-Doping Agency Prohibited List.
Ostarine, also known as MK-2866 and Enobosarm, is a non-FDA approved selective androgen receptor modulator (SARM) that is illegally sold in the United States and worldwide as a performance-enhancing substance. Ostarine is not currently available as a prescription medication in any country, and its unauthorized use may carry serious side effects. Nonetheless, ostarine has been found as a declared and undeclared ingredient in many dietary supplements sold in the United States, which has prompted the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to issue warning letters to specific dietary supplement manufacturers stating that ostarine is an unapproved new drug and that selling the drug is in violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. More information about the risks of ostarine can be found through a USADA athlete advisory.
Because Sanford had never been in the USADA Registered Testing Pool, had not received formal anti-doping education, and had based his decision to use the dietary supplement containing ostarine on the recommendation and assurances of his coach, Kenta Bell of the Thinking Feet Track Club, USADA determined that the appropriate period of ineligibility was two years. Sanford, however, was eligible for, and received, a one-year reduction to his two-year period of ineligibility based on his full cooperation and substantial assistance to USADA during its investigation.
Sanford’s one-year period of ineligibility began on June 2, 2017, the date he began cooperating with USADA. In addition, Sanford has been disqualified from all competitive results obtained on and subsequent to April 1, 2016, the approximate date he first possessed a prohibited substance, including forfeiture of any medals, points and prizes. To date, Sanford is one of nine individuals affiliated with the Thinking Feet Track Club to have accepted a sanction during the course of USADA’s investigation.
In an effort to aid athletes, as well as all support team members such as parents and coaches, in understanding the rules applicable to them, USADA provides comprehensive instruction on its website on the testing process and prohibited substances, how to obtain permission to use a necessary medication, and the risks and dangers of taking supplements as well as performance-enhancing and recreational drugs. In addition, USADA manages a drug reference hotline, Global Drug Reference Online (www.GlobalDRO.com), conducts educational sessions with National Governing Bodies and their athletes, and proactively distributes a multitude of educational materials, such as the Prohibited List, easy-reference wallet cards, periodic newsletters, and protocol and policy reference documentation.
Along with education and testing, robust anti-doping programs enable investigations stemming from tips and whistleblowers. USADA makes available a number of ways to report the abuse of performance-enhancing drugs in sport in an effort to protect clean athletes and promote clean competition. Any tip can be reported using the USADA Play Clean Tip Center, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, by phone at 1-877-Play Clean (1-877-752-9253) or by mail at the address below.
USADA is responsible for the testing and results management process for athletes in the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Movement, and is equally dedicated to preserving the integrity of sport through research initiatives and educational programs.