Athletics: Pippig drug suspension

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UTA PIPPIG, the three-times winner of the Boston marathon, has been suspended by the German athletics association, the DLV, after a drug test in April showed unnatural levels of male hormones.

The DLV vice-president, Theo Rous, said that Pippig has been suspended, not banned, based on the results of a routine test in April that showed unnatural levels of the male hormones testosterone and epitestosterone. If she were found guilty, she would be banned for two years, he said.

Pippig denied taking any illegal substances. The 33-year-old said she had been ill in April and May and unable to train. "I have done nothing wrong," she said. "I have been tested 50 or 60 times and nothing has ever been found. I can't admit to something that I haven't done."

Her trainer and partner Dieter Hogen said that there had been mistakes made in the labelling of the samples. He also said Pippig had suffered from hormone problems after she resumed taking a birth control pill in the spring.

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