Chinese swimmer Sun Yang was banned for three months this summer, beginning on May 17th, 2014, after a positive test for the substance Trimetazidine, FINA announced this morning.
Sun tested positive for the specified stimulant at the Chinese National Championships and was quietly given a three-month suspension that was expired in time for him to compete and win gold in the 400 and 1500 meter individual freestyles, and the 400 free relay at the Asian Games in late September.
In addition, the Chinese Swimming Association suspended Sun’s doctor, Ba Zhen, for one year.
Trimetazidine is a prescription drug used to treat angina, or plaque buildup in the arteries; and in some countries to treat ringing in the ears and dizziness. It was only added to the WADA banned list in January of 2014.
As a World Anti-Doping Code “specified substance,” Sun was given the opportunity to establish how the substance entered his body and that it was not intended to enhance his sport performance. According to CHINADA deputy director Zhao Jia, Sun “proved with sufficient evidence that he did not intend to cheat…but his failure to inform the doping control official should be punished all the same.”’
Sun is the current World Record holder in the men’s 1500 meter freestyle and won four medals (including two golds) at the 2012 Summer Olympic Games.
Updated with comment from CHINADA deputy director.