Reports out of Jamaica Thursday indicate that Olympic discuss thrower Traves Smikle has tested positive for a banned substance, making him the fourth Jamaican Olympic athlete in the past week to be caught doping. Former world-record holder Asafa Powell, sprint champion Sherone Simpson, and fellow discus thrower Allison Randall were all hit with doping violations during last month’s trials for the upcoming IAAF World Championships in Moscow.
Smikle did not identify the substance he was caught using, but did release a statement to the media regarding the positive test (via Reuters):
As an athlete, I must take responsibility for whatever is found in my body; however I wish to state that I did not knowingly or willfully ingest any banned substance.
Personally, I am very saddened and surprised by these findings, as I have never attempted to cheat and have always considered myself an ambassador for the sport and a strong supporter of drug testing.
Positive drug tests haven’t just been confined to Jamaican athletes. American sprinter Tyson Gay was also forced to withdraw from the upcoming championships due to a positive drug test. The field of start athletes for the IAAF World Championships is growing smaller and smaller, with Yohan Blake and David Rudisha withdrawing due to injuries.