TORONTO — The head of the medical commission for the Pan Am Games says there have been eight positive doping tests so far, a figure he puts “in the average range” for what would be expected at the multi-sports event.
Dr. Eduardo De Rose, in an interview with The Associated Press on Tuesday, said games officials would carry out 1,500 urine tests and 400 blood tests on 6,000 athletes before the event ends on Sunday.
“All the conditions here are ideal for the detection of doping in the games,” De Rose said. “I would take this number as something acceptable. I would not say we are having too many, or too few. We are exactly in the average range.”
De Rose praised the revised doping code published earlier this year by the World Anti-Doping Agency. It allows the targeting of specific banned substances — depending on the sport — and also targeting of specific athletes.
“The conditions we have now are almost ideal for doping control, and I would not expect too many situations where we are not getting the people we should get,” he explained. “But as in anything in life, we are doing the best we can but we are not perfect.”
De Rose said he had heard of some national delegations reporting a few additional positive tests, but he declined to comment on them.
De Rose, a Brazilian, praised Canada’s national anti-doping agency — Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport — and a lab in Montreal doing the testing.
Under the new WADA code in effect from the start of the year, specific banned substances are being targeted, depending on the sport. Specific athletes are also being targeted if there is reason for suspicion.
“It’s clear we have some high-risk sport, risk sport, low-risk and no- risk,” De Rose said.
The Pan American Sports Organization has listed eight positive tests for banned substances.
Three baseball players have tested positive — Nelson Gomez of Puerto Rico. Mario Castillo of the Dominican Republic, and Javier Ortiz of Colombia.
Three wrestlers also on the list — Luz Vazquez of Argentina, who must relinquish a bronze medal, Elverine Jimenez of Nicaragua and Stephanie Bragayrac of Paraguay.
Others who tested positive were Honduran boxer Merin Zalazar and weightlifter Cinthya Dominguez of Mexico.
In addition, Peruvian swimmer Mauricio Fiol has acknowledged the he tested positive for the banned anabolic steroid stanozolol. The Brazilian Olympic Committee also reported that wrestler Patrick Mendes has been notified of a positive test.
Neither has been confirmed by Pan Am Games officials.