The dominoes continue to fall in the maelstrom of doping scandals that have washed through 2016, with mere days remaining before the start of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
At the end of June, a New York Times article followed the story of Ukrainian tennis player Kateryna Kozlova, who tested positive for a banned substance in 2015 and served a six-month sentence, causing her to miss the chance to compete at Wimbledon. Her initial ban was longer, but the International Tennis Federation (ITF) declared there to be “no significant fault or negligence” on Kozlova’s part for the ingestion of the substance.
That substance was 1,3-dimethylbutylamine (also known as “DMBA”), which Kozlova had no clue she had taken. “I didn’t understand anything in there,” she said, according to the Times article. “I just sat down and I was shocked. I was sure it was some kind of mistake.”
In an effort to figure out what exactly had happened, she went to experts at a medical university in Moscow, who told her that DMBA, the substance she tested positive for, also went by 2-amino-4-methylpentane, or AMP. It turns out that AMP was a substance found in a product that was recommended to her by her doctor, Elena Dorofeeva.
According to the Times, who quoted from the ITF investigation, Dorofeeva confirmed with Kozlova that “it had no banned substances in it, it contained pure vitamins, it was very good and was used by other athletes who liked it a lot.”
Kozlova eventually figured out that AMP (or DMBA) was an ingredient in a product given to her by Dorofeeva and addressed the doctor on the matter, but Kozlova says that Dorofeeva refused to take blame for Kozlova’s positive test and subsequent ban. According to Kozlova, after she received her ban from tennis last year, Dorofeeva “disappeared.”
Dorofeeva was an elite swimmer for the Soviet Union in the 1980s, and according to the Times, she has worked with swimmers, cyclists, track and field athletes, and wrestlers in eastern Ukraine since the mid-1990s. She was actually named in an announcement by the Ukraine swimming federation as one of the doctors for their team at the 2016 European Championships. Ukraine won five medals at those championships, including a gold by Andriy Govorov in the 50 fly at 22.92, nearly four tenths ahead of silver medalist Laszlo Cseh of Hungary.
As for Dorofeeva, she will serve a four-year ban, which began on May 1st of 2016. According to the Times, Dorofeeva did not even show up for her ITF hearing in London, nor did anyone represent her.