WTC 2017 Maurizio Carta vs WTC - Appeal

On 23 February 2017 the World Triathlon Corporation decided to impose a 4 year period of ineligibility on the Athlete Murizio Carta for his refusal to provide a blood sample. Here the Athlete explained that he had a phobia of needles and he offered the USADA Doping Control Officer to provide a urine sample instead which was not acceptable to the WTC.

Hereafter in March 2017 the Athlete appealed the WTC decision and the Sole Arbitrator settled the case based on the written submissions of the parties.

The Athlete admitted that he refused to provide a blood sample and denied that this refusal was without compelling justification. He stated that he immediately said that he had a phobia of needles as confirmed by the medical certificate from October 2016. He says that he cooperated proactively by not only explaining his refusal to provide a blood sample, but offering repeatedly to provide a urine sample.
He argued that in the circumstances of his refusal to provide a blood sample no suspension was warranted or alternatively a 2 year period of ineligibility should be imposed.

The Arbitrator holds that the Athlete’s previous anti-doping rule violation is significant since it demonstrates his familiarity with anti-doping testing. In light of this previous violation in 2005 and the decision of the CAS arbitrator, and his acknowledgement that he previously had undergone numerous anti-doping controls, he must have known that anti-doping testing at the 2016 World Championships was a possibility.

The Sole Arbitrator concludes that the Athlete failed to provide compelling justification for his refusal to provide a blood sample, as requested. The Arbitrator deems that it is clear that the Athlete was negligent in not taking steps to address his alleged phobia of needles in advance of the 2016 World Triathlon Championships so as to be able to provide a blood sample if required. He then knowingly or intentionally refused to provide a sample when requested to do so.

Therefore the Sole Arbitrator decides on 26 June 2017:

1.) Mr. Carta's appeal from the WTC's Charge of Anti-Doping Rule Violation and Notice of Sanction under the IRONMAN Anti-Doping Rules, dated 23 February 2017 is dismissed;
2.) the Suspension and Sanction set out in the Charge of Anti-Doping Rule Violation and Notice of Sanction remain in place;
3.) each Party shall bear its own costs; and,
4.) all other or further claims are dismissed.

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Decisions International Federations
26 June 2017
Alvarez, Henri C.
Refusal or failure to submit to sample collection
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Sole Arbitrator
Waiver of "right to be heard"
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