Sat | Apr 30, 2016

Pure stupidity - Dr Wright

Published:Monday | July 15, 2013 | 12:00 AM
Dr Paul Wright ... WADA code says you have a responsibility for whatever is in your body. - file

Ryon Jones, Staff Reporter

Local anti-doping and sports medicine expert, Dr Paul Wright, has deemed it stupidity that another set of local athletes have returned adverse analytical findings, given that they have access to a state-of-the-art laboratory at the University of the West Indies (UWI).

The five athletes include veteran sprinters Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson, who Wright believes should have known better.

"This is just a tragedy and when you understand that these are experienced athletes, they should know that you do not do these types of things," Wright said.

"The University of the West Indies has one of the most modern labs in the history of the Caribbean, and all they have to do is carry any substance up there and ask them to check it for them.

"So what they have to do is if they get a substance that everybody tells them is good, they carry it to UWI, give them a money, and ask them to check it. So it is pure stupidity how these people keep getting caught."

The drug that is reported to have turned up in Powell's and Simpson's 'A' sample is a stimulant called oxilofrine (methylsynephrine).

"It's mainly used by people with low blood pressure," Wright said. "It can be used to build up back their blood pressure or it can be used as a stimulant. It gets its popularity in sports, as to help people to run faster."

Wright further outlined that how the stimulant works is that it increases a person's heart rate, which facilitates more blood going to the extremities during running and therefore making them run better. Adding that if their technique is good, it will make them run faster.

"It (Oxilofrine) is very uncommon," Wright revealed. "What Oxilofrine is; it is a change in the molecular structure of ephedrine which is banned, but is also available in all cold and flu supplements.

"So what they do is change one of the molecules in the outer ring of ephedrine and produce this drug."