Filipina biker who failed doping test at Asian Games files appeal

Photo from Ariana Evangelista’s Facebook page
Photo from Ariana Evangelista’s Facebook page

PHILIPPINE mountain bike rider Ariana Evangelista, who failed a doping test at the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou, China, and was provisionally suspended in the Games earlier this week, has appealed the decision.

In a Facebook post made on Friday afternoon, Evangelista said she had received the notice from the International Testing Agency (ITA) via email last Tuesday, October 3, 2023 and had replied to them the next day.

“I have already sent an appeal and I am waiting for their reply. I am currently waiting for the results of my B-sample,” she wrote.

“There were many factors that could have led to the initial failing of the test and I have emailed those factors to the ITA already,” the 32nd Southeast Asian Games silver medalist said.

Evangelista competed in the women’s cross-country Olympic mountain bike competition on September 25, 2023 where she placed 13th after suffering what she said was a puncture of her front and rear tire on the second lap of the four-lap race that forced her to run 1.5 kilometers for a tire change.

In a statement Wednesday, the ITA said Evangelista had tested positive for the banned performance-enhancing substance erythropoietin (EPO) on a test performed on September 24.

In her post Friday, Evangelista apologized over the issue, saying: “I deeply apologize to everyone for this issue and please know that it was not and will never be my intention to bring shame to our country. I have been tested a lot of times already in the 10 years that I’ve been racing in UCI events and it is only now that this has happened.”

Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) is the world governing body of cycling.

She said she had also been tested in two other races this year and had tested negative.

“In the Cambodia Southeast Asian Games, I was tested for doping for my Silver medal in XCE. In the Coupe du Japon Yawatahama International MTB Race in Japan, I was tested as well for my Bronze. Both happened in May 2023 and with presumably negative results, as I did not receive any notice like what happened for the China Asian Games,” Evangelista wrote. (CTL)


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