Swimmer Ryan Lochte suspended until July 2019 for use of IV
24 July, 2018, 01:44 | Author: Donna Miller
Ryan Lochte addressed the media on Monday afternoon at a news conference following the announcement of his 14-month suspension.
Twelve-time Olympic medallist Ryan Lochte says he is "devastated" by his 14-month ban for a doping violation. That caught the attention of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, which launched an investigation. FINA said it found Cox's statements of innocence "highly credible" but still implemented the suspension because she could not prove a "likely source" of the banned substance.
While USADA said Lochte was not using a banned substance, athletes can typically only receive IVs as part of hospital treatment or through an exemption.
Lochte, who has been training with hopes of making the US Olympic team in 2020, had been expected to swim at this week's national championships in California.
The American had claimed that he and team-mates Jimmy Feigen, Gunnar Bentz and Jack Conger had been held up and robbed by men posing as police while celebrating in Rio de Janeiro during the 2016 Olympic Games.
Lochte was outed after he published a picture on Instagram of himself and his wife receiving the treatment.
Lochte has won six gold three silver and three bronze Olympic medals
"I have never taken a prohibitive substance", Ryan said. This is prohibited at all times, according to the USADA, hence the suspension.
"I wasn't taking anything illegal", said Lochte.
That is now impossible, though, as he is banned from competition until July 23, 2019, a week and a half before his 35th birthday.
"I've been swimming my whole life and I've been monitored by Usada for my entire competitive career", he said. "Unfortunately although the rule is a newer one and not as widely known as others I should know better".
"I have goals that I want to accomplish in 2020", Lochte added. The punishment would appear to cast doubt on his stated goal of making the USA team for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, during which Lochte will turn 36.
But he returned in 2017 at the U.S. Open, declaring himself wiser and more responsible after fathering a child. He won gold medals at the 2004, 2008, 2012 and 2016 games, and if he were to find a way to win another in Tokyo he would become the oldest Olympic swimming champion.
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