Texas freshman Grace Ariola has tested positive for a prohibited substance, per a United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) announcement.
— USADA (@usantidoping) September 28, 2018
During an out-of-competition test, 18-year-old Ariola tested positive for hydrochlorothiazide via urine sample she provided on June 19th of this year. Hydrochlorothiazide is banned due to its masking properties.
In its investigation, however, the USADA has deemed Ariola as without fault or negligence and the swimmer will not face a period of ineligibility as a result of her positive test. Ariola provided the USADA with records for a permitted oral prescription medication she was taking at the time of her positive test and, although the medication did not list hydrochlorothiazide on its list of ingredients, a detailed laboratory analysis confirmed trace contamination.
Travis T. Tygart, CEO of the USADA, said, “While the rules require this to be publicly announced, we strongly believe this case, and others like it, should be considered no violation. We will continue to advocate in the WADA Code review process that where no fault or negligence has occurred, an athlete should not face any violation or unnecessary public attention.”
Ariola’s case is the 2nd recent situation involving a Texas swimmer in 2018, with Madiysn Cox also having been falling victim to a hidden, unknown ingredient. In Cox’s case, her original 2-year suspension for testing positive for Trimetazidine was dropped down to 6 months after a WADA-accredited lab in Salt Lake City determined that 4 nanograms of the banned substance were present in both the opened and sealed bottles of Cooper Complete Elite Athletic multivitamin that Cox says she had been taking for seven years.
Since original publishing, Grace Ariola has contacted SwimSwam with her official statement, seen below: