USADA announced today that Olivia Ray, 24, of Auckland, New Zealand, an athlete in the sport of cycling, has accepted a two-and-a-half-year suspension for an anti-doping rule violation involving her use and possession of multiple prohibited substances.
“This case demonstrates the power of investigations in the fight to protect sport and athletes’ rights,” said USADA CEO Travis T. Tygart. “As always, we will thoroughly investigate and act on evidence of doping violations, and greatly appreciate the assistance of those who come forward on behalf of clean sport.”
In addition to education and testing, robust anti-doping programs enable investigations stemming from various sources, including tips (Play Clean Tip Center) and whistleblowers. USADA investigations can reveal evidence about the actions of coaches, athletes, and support personnel who have engaged in, instigated, facilitated, or encouraged doping.
After receiving information from a whistleblower in December 2021, USADA initiated an investigation that yielded evidence implicating Ray, who was living and competing in the United States at the time, in anti-doping rule violations. When confronted with the evidence, Ray fully cooperated, despite pressure for her not to do so, and admitted she was provided prohibited substances by another athlete, Jackson “Huntley” Nash, and committed the following anti-doping rule violations in 2021:
- Use of the Prohibited Substances Human Growth Hormone (hGH), clenbuterol, and oxandrolone
- Possession of the Prohibited Substances clenbuterol and oxandrolone
The above violations are prohibited under the USADA Protocol for Olympic and Paralympic Movement Testing, the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee National Anti-Doping Policies, and the Union Cycliste Internationale Anti-Doping Rules, all of which have adopted the World Anti-Doping Code and the World Anti-Doping Agency Prohibited List.
Under Article 10.8.1 of the Code, an athlete who faces an anti-doping rule violation that carries a period of ineligibility of four or more years may receive a one-year sanction reduction if the athlete admits the violation and accepts the asserted sanction within 20 days of notification of the alleged anti-doping rule violation charge. Per the rule, Ray qualified for a one-year reduction to the otherwise applicable four-year period of ineligibility.
USADA also granted Ray an additional six-month reduction of her sanction for providing substantial assistance with respect to the case against Nash.
Ray’s 30-month period of ineligibility began on March 10, 2022, the date her provisional suspension was imposed. In addition, Ray’s competitive results on and subsequent to May 17, 2021, the date Nash raised with Ray using hGH and/or other prohibited substances, have been disqualified, including forfeiture of any medals, points and prizes.
In an effort to aid athletes, as well as 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 file and update athlete Whereabouts, 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 distributes a multitude of educational materials, such as a supplement guide, a nutrition guide, a clean sport handbook, and periodic alerts and advisories.
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 text at 87232 (“USADA”), by email at playclean@USADA.org, by phone at 1-877-Play Clean (1-877-752-9253) or by mail.
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.
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