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Asafa Powell testifies at Sherone Simpson's doping hearing

Published:Wednesday | January 8, 2014 | 5:22 PM

Andre Lowe, Senior Staff Reporter

KINGSTON, Jamaica:

Day two of the doping violation hearing of Olympic sprinter Sherone Simpson continued today at the Jamaica Conference Centre with testimonies from the 29-year-old as well as her former MVP training mate Asafa Powell.

The hearing will resume on February 4 and 5 contingent on the presentation of certain documents after today's second scheduled day failed to return a resolution.

Both athletes were found with the banned substance Oxilofrine in their system at last year's National Championships.

The substance is believed to have been present in one of the supplements - Epiphany D1, given to both athletes by Powell's former physical therapist Chris Xuereb.

Simpson was questioned for one hour and 50 minutes in front of the Jamaica Anti Doping Disciplinary Panel, while Powell spent 10 minutes responding to questions from members of the three member panel; chairman Lennox Gayle, Peter Prendergast and Dr Japheth Ford.

Simpson, the Beijing Olympics 100m silver medallist, while being cross examined by Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission attorney Lackston Robinson, admitted to not always remembering the names of all her supplements when making declarations on doping control forms.

Simpson also stated during her testimony that she was unaware of published advisories from WADA, IAAF and other anti-doping bodies against the usage of supplements.

The sprinter later explained the sequence of events that followed her doping violation notification, sharing that a discussion between herself and former coach Stephen Francis identified 'Epiphany D1' as the possible reason behind her failed test.

Simpson said following her positive test, she went through all the new supplements that she had received from Xuereb along with Francis, who she said suggested that Epiphany D1 could be responsible because he was unfamiliar with the product.

The supplement was later sent to labs in Miami, Kentucky and also at the University of West Indies, Mona (UWI).

Powell was questioned for 10 minutes during which he stated that he was not aware that Simpson had received five supplements from Xuereb and noting that he had not recommended them to her.

Simpson's lead attorney Kwame Gordon also called Professor Wayne McLaughlin, director of Caribbean Toxicology, UWI to the stand, who verified that a single sealed bottle of Epiphany D1, which was sent to him to be tested, confirmed the presence of Oxilofrine.

However, a separate lab based in Kentucky, USA, (HFL Sports Science - Informed Sports) returned conflicting results from two different bottles of the supplement; one revealing the presence of Oxilofrine and another not showing it to be present.

McLaughlin, who noted that it would cost in the region of US$1,000–US$1,500 for an athlete to test five supplements at Caribbean Toxicology, also noted that Oxilofrine was not listed on the packaging for Epiphany D1.

Simpson's agent Paul Doyle was the last person to testify today.

Doyle, who had hired Xuereb to treat Powell, went through his introduction of the Canadian physical therapist and noted that he was told that a third test, presumably at the Doctors Hospital in Miami, which was done by MVP and facilitated by the club's agent Adrian Laidlaw, also showed that Epiphany D1 contained Oxilofrine.

Doyle has, however, not been able to get his hands on the official test results despite several request.

"I trust Mr Laidlaw, I known him for a lot of years and if he said he had it (Epiphany D1) tested and it came back positive with Oxilofrine then I believe him," Doyle said.


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