Italian Doctor Porcellini Banned For 30 Years, Magnini Case Continues

Italian nutritionist Guido Porcellini has been banned for 30 years by Italy’s national anti-doping organization. Swimmers Filippo Magnini and Michele Santucci remain under investigation based on their association with Porcellini.

NADO Italia, Italy’s national anti-doping agency, reports that Porcellini was banned for 30 years as of July 2. Magnini was slated to have his own hearing about a week later, but it has been delayed. The two-time World Champion 100 freestyler Magnini was central to Porcellini’s trial, an Italian news service reports. Prosecutors said Magnini “did not want to give up over time, he still wanted to feel like a superman,” in a rough translation of the Italian.

Italian news services report that Magnini could face an 8-year ban. He’s accused of drug use, abetting and administration or attempted administration of a prohibited substance. The 36-year-old swimmer was a mainstay of the international swimming scene from 2003 to 2016, when he was a triple European Champs medalist at age 34. Ilsussidaiario.net reports that Magnini’s trial won’t take place this month.

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Toron
2 years ago

Magnini was in a very public six-year relationship with Federica Pellegrini in which they co-habited. Is there any way that Magnini could have been drug trafficking and/or involved in doping activities without her knowing about it? I suppose there is and it seems thus far she has not been implicated, but it is at least worth exploration, no? Has she been required to testify in the matter? Her recent announcement that she may retire also does not look great optically.

Franc
Reply to  Toron
2 years ago

The rough Google Translate shows that the Italian News Service article linked by Swimswam says “There was a net attempt to separate Magnini from Pellegrini, but she too was a customer of Porcellini.” If that is the case, then further investigation or questions for Pellegrini are surely warranted.

SUM Ting Wong
Reply to  Toron
2 years ago

She has done enough damage to have her own column. This is why she did not win in 2016. They was also 2008 but that was because she was just an awful person . Of course there were a lot of awful people in that race .

Swimmer!
Reply to  Toron
2 years ago

Probably no. Didn’t Ian Thorpe also have a coach busted for PED possesion (steroids I believe), and also actually test positive? When a coach/doctor gets busted, the athletes are aware. It’s very naive to think they would have no idea.

That’s just my opinion.

Swimmer!
Reply to  Swimmer!
2 years ago

Sorry. It was Popov at the time. Thorpe joined the coach at a later date, but still had a flagged drug test before then.

Togger
2 years ago

Leeetle pig leeetle pig, let me come..ban you from practising medicine for three decades.

Admin
Reply to  Togger
2 years ago

This is a way better headline than what we used.

Dan
2 years ago

Is there any information when he started?
Always been impressed with how well he has done as he got “older”, now I just feel disappointed – to say the least.

Dee
2 years ago

This is essentially why the sudden rise of Italian swimming leaves a few concerns for me. No real change can explain the rather dramatic explosion in performance. Increased funding? No. Structural overhaul? No. Just those worrying “He never took swimming seriously before this year” stories.

Italian cycling has been ravaged by similar stories before, since the 90s with Francesco Conconi, and the 2000 swim team raised suspicions, to put it lightly.

I’m not going to sit here and name names, but there are some very fishy characters in that team when taken in context of Italy’s history and personal trajectory.

Philip Johnson
Reply to  Dee
2 years ago

Yup, like that 100 fly swimmer perhaps.

overtraining
Reply to  Philip Johnson
2 years ago

USA has a 100 fly swimmer who improved his PB by more than two seconds in one year, far more impressive than the Italian’s 0.4 second.

overtraining
Reply to  Philip Johnson
2 years ago

Piero Codia
2013, 53.74
2014, 52.32
2015, 51.69
2016, 51.42
2017, 51.09
2018, 50.64

A very steady improvement in the past few years. You can’t suspect him just because he’s not very young. Didn’t Ryan Lochte hit his PB in 400 IM at the age of 28?

overtraining
Reply to  overtraining
2 years ago

*2013, 52.74

Mr Hyde
Reply to  overtraining
2 years ago

guys lets be honest – there is a lot of doping going on in swimming and you’re blind, ignorant, dumb, deluded and daft if you will try and deny it. You only know who’s been caught.

JimSwim22
Reply to  overtraining
2 years ago

U don’t ever wonder about Lochte? I wonder about American swimmers all the time. Depends on my current level if cynicism (sp).

sven
Reply to  JimSwim22
2 years ago

Anyone that fast is under suspicion, IMO. Phelps, Lochte, Peaty, Franklin, Ledecky, Hosszu, Sjostrom, Dressel, etc. American or otherwise. Hard to put the things they’ve done in normal human perspective.

Of course there are plenty of Americans who refuse to acknowledge the possibility, yet they’ll be the first to call Govorov a doper for setting a new world record.

“Everyone is doping except Americans, who win despite this huge disadvantage because of capitalism and elbow grease.”

Dee
Reply to  sven
2 years ago

This is essentially my take, too – Although I was attacked for saying scepticism towards all sporting greatness is warranted on here previously 🤷🏻‍♂️

The difference here is that we’ve seen how these ‘special Dr’ stories end in sport so often, it usually opens up a can of worms, and there is that precedent in other Italian sports. Indurain was a regular visitor to secretive Italian Doctors. I know of British T&F athletes who have been too. They rarely, if ever, have just a few ‘clients’.

Mr Hyde
Reply to  Dee
2 years ago

We call this CARL LEWIS SYNDROME

Caeleb Dressel Will Get 9 Golds in Tokyo
Reply to  JimSwim22
2 years ago

I prefer not to accuse people of doping unless there’s actually evidence of doping. As an American fan of swimming, if you accuse people of doping without evidence, then pick some of the goats. Thorpe, Ledecky, Phelps, Lochte. Thorpe was destroying decade old world records at age 16. Phelps broke a world record at 15, Ledecky won the 800 free at London when she was 16. I don’t believe any of these people doped, they’re amazing. That doesn’t mean they doped. That’s why they’re gods. I have been worried though, about all the doping scandals, and if we found records of Phelps doping, that would definitely stun me.

Mikeh

In considering whether a swimmer is breaking he rules with steroids, I look for three things:

1. An abnormal career progression, like a sudden drop in time outside he developmental years.

2. Or, I look for world class times in spite of poor technique. I could name a couple I’m wondering about even now.

3. Finally, I look for swimmers who go incredibly fast and then disappear from the international scene, only to reappear at the next big meet. This could indicate a deliberate attempt to stay away from tested meets, while remaining in the safe confines of the home country’s “testing regime” that quietly takes care of positive tests by superstars.

Mikeh
Reply to  Mikeh
2 years ago

And I should add that none of these factors guarantee cheating. They are clues, that’s all.

sven

CDWG9GIT (no way am I typing all that out):

I definitely agree that it’s best to give everyone the benefit of the doubt until they test positive or some other conclusive evidence comes up. However, there will always be a part of me that wonders about the insane things that some of these athletes do. Katie Ledecky absolutely demolishes other world class freestylers, more than a few of whom are doping (statistically speaking). Phelps’ recovery, in the words of Mike Cavic, is “nothing short of science fiction.” Dressel’s triple from Budapest, etc. Katinka Hosszu puts up extremely consistent and high-quality races back-to-back-to-back on the World Cup circuit. Adam Peaty has taken sprint breaststroke to levels that none of us would… Read more »

Mr Hyde

I will say that i believe swimmers dope – no question.

The reason i reserve judgement on some of the greats is for reasons anatomically and physiologically that they possess that separate them from normal humans. It may sound silly but it is the truth. For instance, Hackett’s massive lungs for not only helping transport oxygen but also the biomechanical advantage of floating higher in the water. Thorpe’s enormous feet.

Caeleb Dressel also does a dryland program that develops power that not many swimmers have tapped in to. I believe it is going where sprint S&C training methodology should go. He hang cleans 120kg which is good for a swimmer, but fairly normal for a human. So as he does… Read more »

Ice Age Swimmer
Reply to  Mr Hyde
2 years ago

I LOVE Reece Whitley, but I wonder if his long, slow gliding stroke will ever be able to compete with the likes of Peaty, without major modifications. Obviously, the 200 is a better race for him, but I wonder if his college coaches will attempt any major stroke modifications. I am rooting for Reece, regardless!!!

sven
Reply to  JimSwim22
2 years ago

I will come to Lochte’s defense, specifically. I think that if he was doping, he would have been very aware of the rules (so as to more effectively avoid getting caught). The fact that he posted that picture of himself getting that IV tells me he probably was never worried about anti-doping protocols, which is not what I would expect from someone trying to circumvent them

Philip Johnson
Reply to  overtraining
2 years ago

Besides Lochte, which I don’t know is true, how many swimmers are swimming PBs at 28? I’m not trying to be smart, just curious.

sven
Reply to  Philip Johnson
2 years ago

It’s not super common, but I suspect we’ll see it more as swimmers’ careers get longer. Ervin went a best time to win the 50 in Rio, at 33 or something. Phelps went a textile best in 2015 in the 100 fly at age 30. I’m sure there are other examples who aren’t so high profile, but it definitely happens.

Emanuele
Reply to  Dee
2 years ago

So steroids in baseball means every us swimmer is a doper?

Dee
Reply to  Emanuele
2 years ago

I’m not sure who you’re replying to, as it doesn’t appear on my phone, but my point was that these ‘Doctors’ seem to be numerous in Italian sports quite widely. Athletics, cycling, football – All have preceeded out-pourings of drama too. I havent said all Italian swimmers are doping, I havent accused anybody, I simply stated this is very worrying if it is heading towards the example set in other Italian sports. Also concerned me that it coincides with Italian swimming developing rapidly, while nobody seems to be able to point to a reason as to why fortunes have changed so rapidly.

You can’t be surpirsed by the concern, surely?

Yozhik
Reply to  Dee
2 years ago

Interesting logic of yours: if nobody can provide the reason then you have one – doping. Why not to include yourself to this nice group “nobody” and to stop at this point with conclusion until the proven reasoning gets provided.

Emanuele
Reply to  Dee
2 years ago

Incredible amount of bs…
First of all, Football? There were an handful of case of doping in football in last 20 years and most are cocaine related test…
Then cyclism? Amstrong is the most notorious case of doping and h surely wasn’t italian…
Athletics? Really? An american reaĺly talking about doping in other nation athletics program? I don’t know basically anything about it but even I know gay, green, jones stories…
So, if you want to make a case, you choose really poorly… “I simply stated this is very worrying if it is heading towards the example set in other United States sports”.

Just to conclude, another things, Italian swimming federation change a lot of (important)… Read more »

Admin
Reply to  Emanuele
2 years ago

Went looking for data on “handful of doping cases” in football (presuming you mean soccer or association football)…

7 positive tests (by the Italian anti-doping authority, not including ones from FIFA, IOC) in 2017. 4 for cannabis, 1 for Clostebol, 1 for Stanozolol, 1 for cocaine. 7 out of 3,452 tests conducted by NADO.

6 in 2016 (3 for Clostebol, 1 for cocaine, 2 for cannabis.

4 in 2015 (1 for Metilpredinsolone, 3 for cannabis)

1 in 2014 (no substance listed)

4 in 2013 (no substance listed)

7 in 2012 (no substance listed)

Comes down to defining “handful,” but on scope of other sports, the numbers are pretty high. Cycling had 12 in 2012, soccer had the next-highest number. Cycling… Read more »

Emanuele
Reply to  Braden Keith
2 years ago

Keith in Italy there are 100 pro football club (the first 3 division) then another 6 amateur division with over a thousand club for a total of 2500+ pro and tenths of thousands of amateur. The amount of doping cases are really few and basically all in the lesser league.
The same thing for Fifa, those data are from all over the world but how many of those cases are from top league and top tournament? a handful.
Furthermore football is a contact sport, they took a lot of medicine to cure their frequent injury and the last 2 big cases of doping (j.pedro and lucioni) are due contamination (maybe, like always they tested everything and find something).… Read more »

Dee
Reply to  Emanuele
2 years ago

Riccardo Agricola, Juventus team Doctor was jailed in 2004 for providing performance enhancing drugs to footballers. Michele Ferrari, another Italian Doctor, was actually at the heart of Lance Armstrong’s huge doping fraud, he was jailed. Francesco Conconi, the ‘teacher’ of Michele Ferrari, the Doctor who introduced EPO to the world of cycling, another convicted Italian Doctor. Pierluigi Fiorella and Giuseppe Fischetto, Doctors at the Italian Athletics Association, jailed for helping Alex Schwarzer cover up his doping trace to avoid him failing tests.

My point stands that in Italian sport, time after time, Doctors have conspired to ply athletes with drugs and cheat to a degree that just doesnt happen in other Western European nations. Also, I’m not an American.… Read more »

Emanuele
Reply to  Dee
2 years ago

Again? Not happens in other Western nations?
Operation Puerto tell you nothing?

Besides it is always a good sign when they discover someone who use doping, I am more suspicious of nation/sport with few cases (like football for example). Probably their federation hide or protect the doper.

Mike
2 years ago

For whatever reason, Italian sport really seems to buy into the ethos that “if you’re not cheating, you’re not trying; and you’re only cheating if you get caught…and even then, not really.”
I mean, it’s to the point where I just assumed any world-class Italian athlete is cheating…

The gold-standard example for this, of course, is G. Evangelisti’s long jump at the 1987 World T&F Champs in Rome (home town). To quote from Wikipedia (great detail and dissection of this in the book, The Lords of the Rings):
“Giovanni Evangelisti of Italy originally won the bronze in the long jump with a jump of 8.37 m, but it was later determined that Italian field officials had entered a… Read more »

SUM Ting Wong
2 years ago

There are many ways to make children youths & adults do stuff that will ‘ improve their sporting performance . In gymnastics abuses are legendary & the US s*x domination was an eye opener even for sport sceptics .in Japan recent videos have their star girl being full on punched in the face by her coach ( allegedly because I did not want to view it )
In swimming I have seen standards of behaviour bordering on psychopathic & criminal.

I think many of these are just as bad as taking PEDs. .

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

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