French steeplechaser reportedly fails doping test


PARIS: French 3,000m steeplechase specialist Ophelie Claude-Boxberger has tested positive for EPO, said a source close to the case on Tuesday.This is third doping case in French athletics in less than a year.Paris’ Public Prosecutor’s Office confirmed it had opened a “preliminary investigation on 14 October into offences under anti-doping and poisonous substances legislation.”Claude-Boxberger, 31, had a difficult time at September’s World Championships in Doha as she finished a distant last in her heat and social media postings suggested she was in a relationship with the French team’s medical director Jean-Michel Serra.He quit his position midway through the championships “for personal reasons”.In June, Serra, without warning his superiors, complained about the number of doping tests Claude-Boxberger had been subject to by the French authorities. At the time, he denied any relationship with the runner.Spe15.fr, a French website specialising in doping in middle-distance running, reported Claude-Boxberger’s home had been searched.French newspapers reported police had visited the headquarters of the French Athletics Federation.On Wednesday, another French athlete, marathon runner Clemence Calvin, faces a disciplinary hearing along with her husband and coach Samir Dahmani, for avoiding an unannounced test in Morocco in March.
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