Feature | Apr 28 2018

Canelo Alvarez vindicated?

The implications of the Canelo Alvarez hair test being found negative
Canelo Alvarez
CaneloChavezHouPC_Hoganphotos6  |  Golden Boy Promotions

HAS Canelo Alvarez been vindicated? He tested positive for traces of clenbuterol in February. That did oblige him to pull out of his May 5 rematch and saw the Nevada State Athletic Commission handed a Alvarez only a six month suspension, dated from when he failed the test.

The Mexican star maintained the finding was due to eating contaminated meat in Mexico. As he sought to prove himself a clean athlete, through the Nevada Commission, he had hair samples tested. Traces of clenbuterol remain detectable in hair for a longer period. If an athlete had been using clenbuterol for a period of time, i.e. deliberately ingesting the substance as part of a doping programme, this can return a positive test in hair follicles. Canelo’s test came back negative, which would therefore be consistent with a single incident, like eating contaminated meat.

Naturally Eric Gomez, Golden Boy president, Alvarez’s promoter, was satisfied with the finding. He told ESPN, “From the beginning, Canelo has insisted that he accidentally ingested clenbuterol from eating tainted meat… The fact this NSAC-required hair follicle test came back entirely negative for any traces of clenbuterol should lay to rest any suspicion that he was intentionally taking a banned substance.”


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