IAAF confirms that the 2008 Olympic 50km race walk gold medallist’s B sample has also tested positive

Italian race walker Alex Schwazer has been provisionally suspended by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF).

It was reported last month that the 2008 Olympic 50km race walk gold medallist, who returned from a three-year and nine-month doping ban to win at the IAAF World Race Walking Team Championships in May, had tested positive for traces of steroids in a May 12 retest of a doping sample taken on January 1.

The IAAF has since announced that testing of Schwazer’s B sample has confirmed the positive finding of the A sample and as a result the athlete has been provisionally suspended.

“The IAAF confirms it has provisionally suspended Alex Schwazer after the B sample confirmed the positive finding of the A,” read a statement sent to AW from the sport’s world governing body.

“The athlete will be offered an expedited hearing prior to the Rio Olympics.”

Schwazer’s winning performance at the IAAF World Race Walking Team Championships in Rome on May 8 had seen him qualify for the 2016 Olympics.

Following news of Schwazer’s positive sample in June, he spoke at a press conference and was quoted by Reuters as saying: “This is not like four years ago. This time I don’t have to apologise because I have done nothing wrong. Probably someone doesn’t want me to go to the Olympics.”

Schwazer had been handed his three-year and nine-month doping ban after after testing positive for EPO before the 2012 Olympic Games.