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Frank Mir Handed Two-Year Suspension

frank mir

Former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir was hit with a two-year ban by the USADA for a failed drug test.

Mir tested positive for dehydrochloromethyltestosterone during an in-competition test ahead of his loss to Mark Hunt in early 2016. The suspension back-dates to April 8, 2016.

Below is the complete statement from the USADA:

USADA announced today that UFC athlete, Francisco (Frank) Mir, of Las Vegas, Nev., received a two-year sanction after multiple positive tests for a prohibited substance.

Mir, 38, tested positive for a long-term metabolite of dehydrochloromethyltestosterone (DHCMT), following an in-competition test conducted on March 20, 2016, at UFC Fight Night 85 in Brisbane, Australia. DHCMT is a non-Specified Substance in the class of Anabolic Agents and prohibited at all times under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, which has adopted the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Prohibited List. The finding of a long-term DHCMT metabolite in Mir’s sample, which was identified through a new detection method by the WADA-accredited laboratory in Tokyo, Japan, led to Mir being provisionally suspended from competition on April 8, 2016.

Upon learning of the positive results of the sample analyzed in Tokyo, USADA had all previously collected stored samples for Mir reanalyzed at the WADA-accredited laboratory in Salt Lake City, Utah (SMRTL), which had also recently implemented methodology for the detection of newly identified long-term DHCMT metabolites. As a result of the additional analyses, SMRTL discovered that an out-of-competition sample Mir provided on February 5, 2016, which had previously been reported to USADA as negative for the presence of prohibited substances, was also positive for the same long-term DHCMT metabolite found in Mir’s in-competition sample.

As investment and commitment to anti-doping research increases, significant advancements in laboratory testing methods have allowed for improved sensitivity and longer detection windows. By continually utilizing the most advanced testing methods as part of a comprehensive retesting program, USADA aims to maximize both the deterrence and detection of doping so athletes who seek an unfair advantage are held accountable now and in the future.

Mir’s two-year period of ineligibility began on April 8, 2016, the date on which he was provisionally suspended from competition.

Pursuant to the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, all UFC athletes serving a period of ineligibility for an anti-doping policy violation are required to remain in the USADA registered testing pool and make themselves available for testing in order to receive credit for time served under his or her sanction. Furthermore, if an athlete retires during his or her period of ineligibility, the athlete’s sanction will be tolled until such time the athlete notifies USADA of his or her return from retirement and once again makes him or herself available for no-advance-notice, out-of-competition testing.

USADA conducts the year-round, independent anti-doping program for all UFC athletes. USADA is an independent, non-profit, non-governmental agency whose sole mission is to preserve the integrity of competition, inspire true sport, and protect the rights of clean athletes. In an effort to aid UFC athletes, as well as their support team members, in understanding the rules applicable to them, USADA provides comprehensive instruction on the UFC Anti-Doping Program website (UFC.USADA.org) regarding the testing process and prohibited substances, how to obtain permission to use a necessary medication, and the risks and dangers of taking supplements as well as performance-enhancing and recreational drugs. In addition, the agency manages a drug reference hotline, Drug Reference Online (UFC.GlobaDRO.com), conducts educational sessions, and proactively distributes a multitude of educational materials, such as the Prohibited List, easy-reference wallet cards, and periodic athlete alerts.

Mir released a statement of his own on his official Facebook page:

I have consistently denied knowingly taking anything that would violate USADA’s guidelines. I was originally told that my post fight sample from March 20, 2016, had been flagged for a trace metabolite, following my clean test the previous month on February 5. For this past year, I have been focused on analyzing anything I could within that six week window that could’ve possibly been the cause…testing supplements and reviewing dietary habits.

It is frustrating to now be told that USADA has changed their mind about the February 5 test, claiming that the sample they once cleared is now clouded with the same trace metabolite. Even more frustrating is that I’ve been told that the long term metabolite could date back two years, prior to the implementation of USADA standards and possibly to a time when I had a legal exemption for testosterone replacement therapy. As hard as it was to try to retrospectively analyze everything I had consumed within a fairly recent six week period of my life, I would have no idea where to start going back years into my past.

What I can do is reiterate my denial and ask you to note that my position on this issue has remained consistent. By contrast, USADA now has two versions of their narrative concerning me. I will discuss this latest development at length on Monday’s edition of my Phone Booth Fighting podcast. I invite you to listen as I will have much more to say on this issue.

The outpouring of support that I continue to receive from my fans has been overwhelming, and I am eternally grateful to each of you for that.

-Frank Mir

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