FINA will officially be withdrawing its doping case against 24-year-old Dutch swimmer Kira Toussaint, according to a statement appear in the Royal Dutch Swimming Federation’s (KNZB).
The backstroking ace has been on voluntary suspension after having tested positive for Tulobuterol after a November 2nd doping test at the Beijing stop of the FINA World Cup Series. Per Toussaint at the time, FINA’s letter to the athlete stated that a reading of 0.000000001 grams was found in the test.
Toussaint does use medication for her asthma, but it is not Tulobuterol. She takes an inhaled formoterol under the brand name Foster, for which there is a specific clause in the World Anti-Doping Code allowing its use without a TUE.
The KNZB‘s statement dated this week, however, says that, after re-testing of the samples at the same Beijing laboratory, the earlier results of tulobuterol in these samples were indeed incorrect.
The swimmer makes it clear that, based on these re-tested results, “Tulobuterol has never been found in my samples. Based on this, FINA has decided to withdraw the procedure. ”
Toussaint further stated, “I have always denied having used tulobuterol. As a result of the alleged positive doping test, we therefore conducted thorough research into the possible causes of that positive urine test for tulobuterol. It turned out that there was a false positive test that was caused by other – fully permitted – medication that I use. I have also mentioned the use of this medication on the doping control form. Apparently until now it was not known that this medicine can cause a false positive test for tulobuterol.
”On the one hand, I am naturally very happy that my innocence has now been proven and that I can swim again. On the other hand, I am disappointed in how the process went. It was completely known to FINA and WADA which medication I use and I have always said that I have never used doping. I have engaged specialists myself to do research and prove my innocence. If that research did not reveal that the test methods used so far are not reliable and could lead to a false positive test for tulobuterol, I might have been wrongly sentenced to a two-year suspension.”
Toussaint continues, “The past period was terrible for me. One of the worst things was the unexpected missing of the World Cup short job in China. I was perfectly fit, but I went home for something that happened completely outside of me. I am glad this period can now leave behind and can again focus fully on my sport.”
Andre Cats, technical director KNZB, said ” The Royal Dutch Swimming Federation is very pleased that this heavy episode for Kira to this very positive end come. I have a great deal of respect for Kira for how she dealt with this extremely stressful situation and I would also like to thank and congratulate all the people who supported her in this process.”
”Kira can now again focus fully on her top sport. The KNZB will certainly enter into discussions with FINA to find out how this false positive test could take place and how this can be prevented in the future. Hundred percent athletes who act in good faith should never be wrongly associated with alleged use of doping.”