Pan-American Games: Sotomayor is linked to positive drug test

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The Independent Online
THE HIGH JUMP world record holder Javier Sotomayor was yesterday embroiled in a drugs test controversy at the Pan American Games in Winnipeg.

Mario Vazquez Rana, president of the Pan American Sports Organisation, said an athlete's first urine sample had tested positive but his second had yet to be tested. Asked directly if Sotomayor was the athlete involved, Vazquez Rana replied: "There is an athlete in the study and test A was positive. I cannot say names, but you said it."

Sotomayor won the high jump, his fourth Pan American gold medal, on the last day of the athletics competition. But neither Vazquez Rana nor the medical director of the games, Eduardo de Rose, would confirm that the positive A test came from the last day of that competition.

Juana Rosario Arrendel, who won the women's high jump title, has already been stripped of her gold medal after a positive doping test and the Mexican baseball player Ray Martinez is another Games participant accused of drug abuse after refusing to take a test.

The Cuban official Alberto Juantorena would not confirm that he had told his country's journalists that he was awaiting results of Sotomayor's B sample. "I have no comment," he said.

Rosario Arrendel tested positive for the anabolic steroid stanozolol - the same substance sprinter Ben Johnson was caught using at the 1988 Olympics. The first person to be accused of drug-taking at the games was the Canadian roller hockey goalkeeper Steve Vezina, who tested positive for two stimulants and the banned steroid nandrolone.