When the Brazilian team traveled to the FINA Short Course World Championships in Istanbul last week, there was one last-minute change to their roster that was probably unnoticed by most of the world, but raised red flags domestically.
That man suddenly absent was 22-year old Diego Prado, as hearings were underway in Brazil for positive doping tests for him and one other Brazilian, Leonardo Sumida, whose punishments were handed down today. (Prado was replaced by Felipe Lima, which is why the change went unnoticed, because Lima is a much better-known name, though Prado was rapidly improving). Both tests were taken at the Open Tournament in early November that served as Brazil’s final qualifying for Worlds, and both samples were sent to a Canadian lab for testing.
Prado tested positive for the banned substance stanozol, a synthetic anabolic steroid. As compared to other banned substances, which have training benefits or masking benefits, stanozol is a classic, performance-enhancing steroid. It’s ideal for increasing swimming speed as it causes strength gain without adding excess weight.
In addition to losing his results from that meet and a spot on the World Championships team, he was given a two-year ban, effective December 4th, 2012.
His best meet was the one he was tested at where he swam a 26.65 in the 50 SCM breaststroke, which would have ranked him 15th in the world this year had the time stood. That was by far the best meet of his career. He was also the third-ranked 100 SCM IM’er in Brazil this year, with a 53.47 from May.
Leonardo Sumida tested positive for marijuana. The CBDA board ruled that he did not use the substance to gain an advantage, and per FINA rules, because Sumida admitted to using the substance, he received only a 3-month ban. His ban began on December 14th, 2012.
Sumida was a backstroker with best long course times of 55.81 and 2:03.60.
That now marks total of 11 positive tests for the Brazilians in 2011 and 2012; among those that we know about (reported to FINA, announced publicly, hearings completed, etc.) that is by far the most of any country in terms of aquatic athletes.