All about doping in CrossFit

Doping is something that unfortunately exists in all elite sports and even more so when large amounts of money are involved. CrossFit has always made it clear that:

To protect the integrity of the competition and its athletes, CrossFit works to ensure the level playing field by creating and enforcing rules that are embodied in the rulebook. The company is also applying a strict anti-doping policy, which is necessary to be able to crown the fittest person on earth.

How does drug testing work?

Year after year CrossFit reinforces its methods to catch the "cheaters" and works with DRUG FREE SPORT, a company that tests in other sports such as the NFL, NBA and MLB .

Urine or blood samples are taken at competitions and also at any place or time during the season.

Following a security protocol, they are sent to a laboratory approved by the WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency - World Anti-Doping Agency) where they will be analyzed.

Once the results are obtained and in the event that any non-permitted substance is detected, CrossFit contacts the athlete to inform him/her and allows 72 hours to indicate whether they wish to make an appeal.

The athlete may request documents showing that one or more substances have been detected in his/her body. Subsequently, the affected athlete has 10 days to file its appeal explaining or proving it has not violated the anti-doping rules.

In this case, CrossFit will review the appeal and respond as soon as possible to its final decision . If, after all, it is proven that the athlete has violated the anti-doping rules, CrossFit will proceed to communicate the 4-year sanction.

To date, we are not aware of any case in which CrossFit has withdrawn the sanction because the athlete has been able to prove that he/she did not use prohibited substances. At best it has proceeded with a reduction of the sanction, as with the Brazilian Larissa Cunha explained below.

Prohibited substances in CrossFit

Athletes competing in CrossFit agree to accept the rulebook, which specifies exactly which substances are prohibited. Here is the official list of the Wada.

Drug policy CrossFit

List of athletes who have been sanctioned for doping

2022

Nycolas Joyal (28), 5th in Atlas Games, did a post on Instagram confessing to have been taking banned substances for two weeks.

The athlete acknowledges having gone through a bad emotional time, seeing that other athletes were better than him.

This had a negative effect on his mental state and during the open, which resulted in being 519th in the world, he felt he was not at the level he wanted to be.

On June 12, he was tested during the Atlas Games semifinal, where he tested positive for GW501516 and ostarine. The same substances as Ricky Garard back in 2017.

Athlete's nameNationalityProhibited substanceTime of sanction / Return
Bart Walsh๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธMetabolites of GW1516Neuromuscular division CrossFit Games 2022. 4 years sanction
Taylor Streid๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธOstarinePositive in Syndicate Crown. Sanctioned until May 2026.
Hunter Williams๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธGW1516CrossFit CLT at Syndicate Crown. Suspended until 2026.
Tommy Tillman๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธclomiphenePositive at CrossFit Games 2022. Sanction until August 2026.
Nycolas Joyal๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆOstarine and GW501516Positive in Atlas Games. Suspended until July 2026
Michel Catris๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡งanastrozole, clomiphene and metabolites GW1516Positive in Strength in Depth. Sanctioned until June 12, 2026.
Benjamin Wadham๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡งostarine and metabolite of oral turinabolPositive for Strength in Depth. Sanction until June 2026.
Sandra Annett๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆmetabolites of stanozololPositive in Atlas Games. Sanction until June 2023.
Sabrina Dellagiustina๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ทOxandroloneQ21 CrossFit team member until 2026
Claudia Espinosa๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡จclomiphene, methenolone and stanozolololIndividual in Copa Sur. Suspended until 2026
Mirela Bedore๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ทGW1516, LGD 4033 and stanozolol.2nd Team in South Cup. Suspended until 2026.
Willian Dalpogeto๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ทclomiphene, nandrolone metabolites and stanozolol2nd Team in South Cup. Suspended until 2026.
Lumma Roberta๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ทgestrinone and GW15163rd South Cup Team. Suspended until 2026.
Phablo Lima๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ทostarine, oxandrolone and GW1516.3rd South Cup Team. Suspended until 2026.
Phil Toon๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธAndrostan, drostanolone2nd individual in Granite Games. Suspended until 2026
Pedro Martins๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ทClomiphene2nd individual in Copa Sur. Suspended until 2024
Nasser Alruwayeh๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ผGW15162nd individual in Far East Throwdown. Suspended until 2024.
Ines Alviso๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡พGW1516Kingbull Paraguay in Copa Sur. Suspended until 2026
Jaylond Franklin๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธGW1516CrossFit Shoofly at Mid-Atlantic. Suspended until 2026
Stephen Wallace๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธOstarineBlues City CrossFit at Syndicate Crown. Suspended until 2026
Toby Johnson๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธGW1516Koda CrossFit at Mid Atlantic. Suspended until 2026
Lize Burns๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡ฆGW1516CrossFit Commit Okavango at Fittest in Cape Town. Suspended until 2026.
Joey Coste๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธGW1516Suspended until 2026
Hunter Williams๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธGW1516Positive in Syndicate Crown. Suspended until 2026.

2021

Athlete's nameNationalityProhibited substanceTime of sanction / Return
Bernard Luzzy๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธMeldoniumFirst in Master 50-54 Games 2021. Suspended until July 29, 2025.
Svetlana Kubyshkina๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡บMethenolone and its metabolite, furosemide and trimetazidine2021 Asia Semifinal Champion. Suspended until July 29, 2025.
Larissa Cunha๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ทOstarinePositive before the start of CrossFit Games 2021 (2 years sanction for contaminated supplements).
Janelle Stites๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธOstarineHer team Team On Track 5th in Mid Atlantic CrossFit Semifinal disqualified and her 4 year ban.
Ashley Flaser๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธSARMsHer team, Team Ocean State, disqualified and she is suspended for 4 years.
Ray Flaser๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธSARMsHis team, Team Ocean State, disqualified, and he receives a 4-year ban.
Katie Christian๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธDehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA)Her Move Fast Lift Heavy team disqualified and her 4-year ban
Deshawn Smith๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธEndurabol (SARMs)His team Invictus Unconquerable 2nd in the West Coast Classic disqualified and he gets a 4 year ban.

Larissa Cunha

During the celebration of the CrossFit Games 2021 , the organization announced the disqualification of Brazilian athlete Larissa Cunha for testing positive for Ostarine.

The test was conducted on July 14, 2 weeks before the CrossFit Games. The results were announced when the athlete was already in Madison ready for check-in.

The athlete tried to prove that there was a mistake and obtained a reduction of the sanction to 2 years ..

crossfit games 2021 doping

Janelle Stites

The first positive for doping in 2021 occurred in the Mid Atlantic CrossFit Semifinal. Janelle Stites was a member of the Team On Track who finished 5th and had qualified for the Games.

The athlete tested positive in a weightlifting competition that had been held earlier.

Ray and Ashley Flaser

Members of the Team Ocean State Team that was 5th in Granite Games.

The couple was sanctioned for testing positive for MRSA. Ray confessed to have been using Pure Mass, a product containing a number of prohibited substances such as Testolone, Ligandrol, Ostarine and Adderall among others.

Katie Christian

Team member of Move Fast Lift Heavy tested positive for Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) in the Granite Games.

The athlete made a post assuming her responsibility, but explained that she was unaware that the substance was banned.

My passion for nutrition and homeopathic medicine has led me to take several vitamins, supplements and herbs that I believe helped me stay healthy and strong and keep me off any prescribed medication. One of these supplements was DHEA.

2020

Athlete's nameNationalityProhibited substanceTime of sanction / Return
Lefteris Theofanidis๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ท19-norandrosterone and meldonium4 years / 2024
Alanna Fisk Colรณn๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธIn process of appealPositive on Wodapalooza 2020. Awaiting resolution

Lefteris Theofanidis

The first sanctioned for doping, in 2020, was a controversial case. Lefteris posted his Open videos (3rd) and his replays did not always appear to meet movement standards.

He was heavily criticized for his poor performance in official competitions compared to his performance during the Open.

Lefteris tested positive in a sample that was submitted on Dec. 12, 2019 during the Dubai CrossFit Championship.

The athlete was sanctioned with 4 years for the use of 19-norandrosterone (anabolic agent) and meldonium classified as a hormone and metabolic modulator.

lefteris theofanidis doping
Image courtesy of CrossFit Games

2019

Athlete's nameNationalityProhibited substanceTime of sanction / Return
Gabor Torok๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡บStanozolol metabolite (16ฮฒ-hydroxystanozololol) and Clomiphene48th at Games 2019 was Fittest in Hungary. 4 years sanction until 2023
Vincent Lopez๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธExogenous testosterone8th in Games 2019 Masters 55-59. 4 years sanction until 2023
Paul Perna๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธExogenous testosterone1st in Games 2019 Masters +60. 4 years sanction until 2023.
Robbie Perovich๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆGW1516 sulfoxide, GW1516 sulfone and ostarine.6th in Games 2019 Masters 40-44. 4 years sanction until 2023
Marion Valkenburg๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑStanozolol metabolites (3'-hydroxystanozololol and 16ฮฒ-hydroxystanozololol)3rd in Games 2019 Maters 55-59. 4 years sanction until 2023
Katie Trombetta๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธGW1516 (Endurabol) and Ostarine44th at CrossFit Games 2019. 4 years sanction until 2023
Franky Wood๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡ณ3-hydroxy-4-methoxytamoxifen and hCG (Intact human chorionic gonadotropin)87th in CrossFit Games 2019 and National Champion in Honduras. 4 years sanction until 2023
Achilleas Pantazis๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡พGW1516 sulfoxide and GW1516 sulfone126th in CrossFit Games 2019 and National Champion in Cyprus. 4 years sanction until 2023
Anna Fragkou๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ทOral Turinabol (anabolic agent)9th in CrossFit Games 2019 and National Champion in Greece. 4 years sanction until 2023
Haylie Thompson๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธGW1516 sulfoxide and GW1516 sulfone4th in CrossFit Games 2019 master 55 - 59. 4 years sanction until 2023.
Mauro Acevedo๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ทOral turinabol, metabolites, GW1516 sulfoxide and GW1516 sulfone3rd in the Argentina Open. Test performed at FitLand Fitness Festival. 4 years sanction until 2023
Juan Sforzini๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ทStanozolol metabolites16th in the Argentina Open. Test performed at FitLand Fitness Festival. 4 years sanction until 2023
Elly Kabboord๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธClenbuterol4 years / 2023
Hinrik Ingi ร“skarsson๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธostarine and RAD-1404 years / 2023
Manila Pennacchio๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡นhormone and metabolic modulator GW15164 years / 2023
Ben Garard๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บGW1516 sulfoxide and GW1516 sulfone4 years / 2023
Lauren Herrera๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธandarine, a metabolite of LGD4033, and metabolites of GW15164 years / 2023
Chantelle Loehner๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธOral Turinabol4 years / 2023
Constanza Cabrera๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฑWe have no infoUnannounced

Katie Trombetta 44th at CrossFit Games 2019. explained that she missed the 72-hour window that CrossFit gives to be able to respond, as they had an email that she doesn't usually check. When they phone-called her, she also did not respond as it was an unknown number.

Trombetta claimed not to have consciously taken any supplements containing these substances and explains that GW1516 and Ostarine are usually the most frequent in contaminated supplements and most of the cases of doping in CrossFit. 

crossfit games 2019 doping kt trrombetta

Hinrik ร“skarsson

A case of those that surprised because it was a repeat offender. He had qualified for the CrossFit Games 2019 and became the first athlete in the top category to return to the Games after a ban.

But a few weeks after the end of the Reykjavik CrossFit Championship, CrossFit announced a new sanction for testing positive for ostarine and RAD-140, two banned substances that left him once again out of any CrossFit competition for 4 more years.

Elly Kabboord

She also participated in the Reykjavik CrossFit Champ. Kabboord claimed that she had been infected by clenbuterol after eating meat in Iceland. CrossFit contacted Icelandic health authorities, who assured that meat controls in the country were up-to-date.

elly kabboord doping

Ben Garard

Another case that made a lot of noise was Ben Garard, Ricky Garard's brother, who tested positive for the same substances as his brother.

2018

Athlete's nameNationalityProhibited substanceTime of sanction / Return
Emily Abbott๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆibutamoren - anabolic4 years / 2022
Dean Shaw๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡ฆclomiphene - selective estrogen receptor modulator4 years / 2022
Lauren Shawver๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธostarine - anabolic4 years / 2022
Laura Hosier๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธhigenamine - beta-2 agonist4 years / 2022
Maria Ceballos๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ดstanozolol metabolites -anabolics4 years / 2022
Andrey Ganin๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡บexogenous testosterone - anabolic steroids4 years / 2022
Nuha Almarri๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ชGW1516 sulfoxide and GW1516 sulfone, metabolites of GW1516 and oral turinabol - metabolic modulator and anabolic androgenic steroid4 years / 2022
Stephanie Araujo๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฝstanozolol metabolite - anabolic steroids4 years / 2022
Joel Munro๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บmetabolites of GW1516 - metabolic modulator4 years / 2022
Rachel Campbell๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธmetabolite of oxandrolone - anabolic steroid4 years / 2022
Kara Paslay๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ1,3-dimethylbutylamine - stimulant2 years / 2020
Megan Benzik๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธepimentendiol, metabolites of methandienone and oxandrolone, epioxandrolone, methanol, a letrozole metabolie, and amphetamine4 years / 2022
Carlos Castillo๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ทLGD40334 years / 2022
Gena Malkovskiy๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡บclomiphene, meldonium, and a metabolite of drostanolone4 years / 2022
Fabio Botteghi๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡นmetabolites of GW1516 - metabolic modulator4 years / 2022
Vivian Bomfim๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ทstanozolol metabolite - anabolic steroids4 years / 2022
Andrรฉ Sanches๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ทepimentendiol, metabolites of methandienone, ostarine, LGD4033 - anabolics4 years / 2022
Kelli Holm๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธmetabolites of GW1516 - metabolic modulator2 years / 2020
Shawn Ramirez๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธmetabolites of GW1516 - metabolic modulator and ostarine - anabolizante4 years / 2022

Emily Abbott

One of the most talked about cases both for the popularity of the athlete and for the defense that the Canadian athlete used. Upon learning of her positive test result, the athlete denied having consumed any kind of doping substance and explained that she must have been infected through her husband's saliva..

Maria Ceballos

The Colombian athlete published a video on Instagram in which she appeared crying very sorry. Due to her sanction, she was left out what would have been the first Colombian team to participate in the CrossFit Games..

Andrey Ganin

The Russian who surprised with Roman Khrennikov by stepping on the podium at the Berlin Regionals.

2017

Athlete's nameNationalityProhibited substanceTime of sanction / Return
Ryan Elrod๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธClomiphene2 years
Nick Thomas๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธOstarine2 years
OJ Washington๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธMethylhexaneamine2 years
Andrea Barbotti๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡นClomiphene4 years
Stella Christoforou๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡พClenbuterol4 years
Ludovit Czokoly๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฐClomiphene4 years
Pawel Lesnikowski๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฑClenbuterol, Modafinil, elevated testosterone levels4 years
Gianluca Occhino๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡นTamoxifen4 years
Ricky Garard๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บTestolone, Endurobol4 years
Tony Turski๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธAnastrozoleNot announced
Josee Sarda๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆOstarine, TestoloneNot announced

Ricky Garard

The most scandalous case in CrossFit history. The Australian athlete placed third in his first year competing in the CrossFit Games. Commentators referred to the athlete's torrent of energy.

list of doping crossfit athletes

All athletes who receive financial rewards undergo doping tests and after a while it came to light that he had used SARMs.

CrossFit withdrew him the title of the third-best athlete in the world, which went to Patrick Vellner, and was forced to return the prizes amounting US$76,000.

2016

Athlete's nameNationalityProhibited substanceTime of sanction / Return
Charis Chan๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธTrenbolone4 years
Natalie Newhart๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธOxandrolone2 years
Scott Jones๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธAnastrozole2 years
Penny Kemp๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บClomiphene1 year
Steve Marino๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธAnabolic steroids2 years

2015

Athlete's nameNationalityProhibited substanceTime of sanction / Return
Steve Pinkerton๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธAnastrozole, Letrozole & 19-norandrosterone2 years
Elia Navarro๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธOxandrolone2 years
Richard Bohlken๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธOstarine1 year
Ryan Fischer๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธIt was impossible to locate him, nor did he cooperate with the agents.1 year
Hinrik ร“skarsson๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธRefused to take a doping test2 years

The closest case to me was that of the Spanish athlete Elia Navarro. Elia tested positive for Oxandrolone, an anabolic steroid, during a test at the Meridian Regional 2015 that was held in Copenhagen, Denmark.. She did not appeal and was sanctioned for 2 years without being able to compete.

In an article that she wrote, Elia explained that due to a serious back injury where she suffered a fracture of the D11 vertebra, the doctors recommended her to take oxandrolone to accelerate and ensure recovery. She rejected this option, and the doctors advised her not to train until January.

In November, she returned to training and after the Open she began to feel discomfort so, seeing that the regionals were approaching, she decided to take oxandrolone to be able to compete.

The athlete admitted it was a mistake and took full responsibility.

2014

Athlete's nameNationalityProhibited substanceTime of sanction / Return
Taylar Stallings๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธB-methylphenethylamine1 year
Abigail Guerrero๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธMethylhexanamine2 years

Abigail Guerrero was the first Spaniard to test positive in a CrossFit drug test.

crossfit athletes doping

2010

Athlete's nameNationalityProhibited substanceTime of sanction / Return
(Ben Bergeron)๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธMethylhexanamineEliminated from CrossFit Games 2010
, Derek Mohammad๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธMethylhexanamineEliminated from CrossFit Games 2010

Did you know that one of the most renowned coaches in the world, (Ben Bergeron)tested positive in 2010?. He was competing in a team event during the 2010 CrossFit Games when, as he stated, decided to buy a supplement with his teammate , Derek Mohammad and both tested positive for the same substance.

Athletes are responsible for what they ingest. Ben Bergeron publicly apologized to all the organizers of the competition.

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