Italian race walker Alex Schwazer fails drug test
Monday 06 August 2012
Italian race walker Alex Schwazer will not defend his title in the 50-kilometre race on Saturday after failing a drugs test.
The Italian Athletics Federation (FIDAL) announced Schwazer has been pulled out of their Olympics squad.
"This afternoon, FIDAL has received confirmation of the positive doping test of Alex Schwazer and the subsequent decision taken by CONI (the Italian Olympic Committee) to exclude him from their Olympic team," read a statement on the FIDAL website.
Schwazer was also entered in the men's 20km walk which took place on Saturday but withdrew last month, citing a cold.
At the time the 27-year-old made it clear he intended to defend his 50km title. He won silver at the shorter distance in Beijing.
Schwazer told Italian press agency ANSA: "I made a mistake, my career is ended here.
"I did it all myself and on my own head so I assume all the responsibility for what has happened."
FIDAL president Franco Arese said: "Better that it happened before the race.
"If it had happened afterwards it would have been worse. We agree with CONI's decision to exclude him immediately from the Olympic team.
"He will be severely punished, as must be obvious, but I see from what he has said that he has had the courage to take full responsibility.
Arese said: "I can't understand what made him do it. I am sure he did not need to. One day I will ask him."
Earlier, American judoka Nick Delpopolo was expelled from the Games after a positive drugs test, and admitted he had eaten food which contained marijuana.
Delpopolo insisted he had not known the food contained the banned substance.
The 23-year-old competed in the men's 73kg division and was tested on July 30 after his loss to Mongolian Nyam-Ochir Sainjargal in the repechage stage, which put him out of medals contention.
The International Olympic Committee said Delpopolo tested positive for 11-nor-delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol-9-carboxylic acid, which is connected to marijuana consumption.
According to the IOC ruling, Delpopolo "explained that his positive test was caused by his inadvertent consumption of food (prior to his leaving for the London Olympic Games) that he did not realise had been baked with marijuana".
Delpopolo apologised to the United States Olympic Committee and team-mates and, according to the IOC, "indicated that he was embarrassed by this mistake".
The IOC disciplinary commission that heard the case stated that Delpopolo should have his seventh-place finish rescinded, return his diploma for competing in the Games and have his accreditation withdrawn.
Manchester United can learn lessons from the transfer template of rivals Manchester City
Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea top the list of the Premier League's most expensive squads
Harry Kane: Tottenham striker confident of rediscovering goal-scoring form after chat with Alan Shearer
Cyprus vs Wales match report: Gareth Bale's bullet header has Welsh on brink of Euro 2016
Bayern Munich 'training camp' to supply refugees with food, footballs and German lessons
- 3 Make your voice heard: Sign The Independent's petition to welcome refugees
- 4 Refugee crisis: Aylan's life was full of fear - in death, he is part of 'humanity washed ashore'
- 5 German police forced to ask public to stop bringing donations for refugees arriving by train
Senior British politicians tell David Cameron: When dead children are being washed up on beaches – it's time to act
Britain to take more refugees as Cameron bows to pressure after more than 200,000 back our campaign
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be
Theresa May says migrants should be banned from entering the UK unless they have jobs lined up