Olympic boxing hopeful Ginny Fuchs was almost screwed out of her 2021 Olympic dream after the 32-year-old was flagged by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency for two potential doping violations.
Fuchs had come painfully close to making the 2012 and 2016 teams only to see other fighters beat her out by slim margins during the last moments of the qualifying processes. The Houston-based fighter was so distraught with missing out on the 2016 team that she almost turned professional after watching the Opening Ceremony for the Rio Games from home four years ago.
“I couldn’t watch,” Fuchs said per NBC Sports. “It was hard for me to watch. I went back to my room, cried and went to bed.”
So imagine how devastated Fuchs much have been after finding out she tested positive for trace amounts of two banned substances earlier this year especially when she had no idea how or why it could have happened.
Fortunately, further investigation uncovered important details.
Per David Barron’s report for the Houston Chronicle:
Fuchs learned in early March that an out-of-competition urine test obtained in mid-February contained trace amounts of two banned substances. She subsequently discovered that her boyfriend had purchased products including the two banned substances and was taking them without her knowledge at a time when they engaged in unprotected sex, USA Boxing said Thursday.
So Fuch’s dream of representing her country at the 2021 Olympics almost went up in smoke because of unprotected sex, but luckily it was ultimately saved by science.
Because USADA announced on Thursday that Fuchs was not at fault for the trace amounts of banned substances found in her system, that the amounts discovered in her urine sample were consistent with sexual transmission, and that Fuchs will remain eligible to qualify for the 2021 Olympic Games.
Fuchs Favorite in Women’s Flyweight Division
Fuchs has long been the favorite to make the team. Now she remains just one step away from completing her long journey to the Olympics.
Fuchs and other USA Boxing athletes resumed training this week at the United States Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Fighters are set to qualify for their Olympic berths at separate qualifying events later this year in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Paris, France.
Fuchs was able to reveal her relief about still having a chance to make the team in a statement sent to the press by USA Boxing.
“I am very relieved that USADA understood how unique my case was in giving me a ‘no fault’ (ruling) that allows me to resume my career immediately,” Fuchs said.
“I had no idea that I could become contaminated by way of intimate contact with another person. I want to thank USA Boxing for believing in me and supporting me throughout these past few difficult months.”
USADA Official Believes World Anti-Doping Code Needs Changes
Travis Tygart, CEO of USADA, said Fuchs’ story should be used as an example of why changes need to be made to the World Anti-Doping Code.
“While the World Anti-Doping Code requires that this no fault finding be considered a violation and be publicly announced, we strongly believe this case and others like it, including meat contamination and prescription medication contamination cases, should be considered no violation,” Tygart said.
The World Anti-Doping Code is the core document that harmonizes anti-doping policies, rules and regulations around the world.
“We will continue to advocate for changes to the World Anti-Doping Code so that where there is no intent to cheat and no performance benefit, an athlete should not face any violation or unnecessary public attention.”
It does seem strange that Fuchs would have such a huge spotlight put on her for seemingly no reason over a matter that the public doesn’t benefit from in any way.
But maybe the unique story is just something that will someday become an odd footnote to Fuchs finally accomplishing her Olympic goals.
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