Olympic 4th-Place Finisher Chen Xinyi Given 2-Year Doping Suspension

Chinese Olympian Chen Xinyi has been given a two-year doping suspension by FINA after testing positive for the banned substance Hydrochlorothiazide at the Olympic Games.

The 18-year old Xinyi tested positive in Rio de Janeiro on August 8th, 2016 in a test conducted by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). According to Estadao Sports at the time, however, she failed a blood test prior to leaving for the Olympics, and wasn’t informed until arriving in Rio.

FINA, citing this being her first anti-doping rule violation, gave Xinyi just a two-year suspension: half of the maximum sentence allowed for a first positive test.

Xinyi placed 4th at the 2016 Olympics in the 100 fly prior to the announcement of her positive test. Her 56.72 was just .09 seconds behind American Dana Vollmer for the bronze medal. The Court of Arbitration for Sport, making a ruling from their Ad Hoc panel at the Olympics, already disqualified her results, and FINA ‘acknowledged’ that decision as part of theirs.

Hydrochlorothiazide, while not itself a performance-enhancing drug, can be used to mask other banned substances. It’s prescribed use is to treat high blood pressure.

The updated rankings of the Olympic final in the 100 fly are below:

Rank Lane Name Nationality Time
 1 4 Sarah Sjöström Sweden 55.48
 2 2 Penny Oleksiak Canada 56.46
 3 6 Dana Vollmer United States 56.63
4 7 Lu Ying China 56.76
5 3 Rikako Ikee Japan 56.86
6 5 Emma McKeon Australia 57.05
7 1 Jeanette Ottesen Denmark 57.17
[a] 8 Chen Xinyi China DSQ

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Didn’t Kelsi Worrell finish 9th in the semis?


Yep. Apparently the notice of positive result came out a day or two after the 100 fly finals. I will forever be pained by how this prevented Worrell from making the finals.


She is even a bad cheater, just 4th place! Oh!????


So they allow her to compete in the Olympics.. let her swim in a final and almost medal… THEN they suspend her. That’s a good look. Robbed a clean athlete of an Olympic final swim. Go FINA, you really showed her!

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Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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