5 CrossFit Meridian Regional Athletes Suspended After Failing Drug Tests

Andrea Barbotti at the 2017 CrossFit Meridian Regional.
Andrea Barbotti at the 2017 CrossFit Meridian Regional.

CrossFit announced today that five athletes who competed at the 2017 Meridian Regional failed “directed” drug tests. The athletes all competed as individuals during the third weekend of the regional competitions. It is unclear when the athletes were drug tested by CrossFit.

None of the athletes finished in the top 5 to qualify for the CrossFit Games, however their results have been disqualified from the 2017 season and are now subject to a 4-year ban from CrossFit-sanctioned events. The suspension will run through the 2021 Games season.

The athletes who have been disqualified are:

  • Andrea Barbotti (clomiphene) – 20th
  • Stella Christoforou (clenbuterol) – 21st
  • Ľudovít Czókoly (clomiphene) – 30th
  • Paweł Leśnikowski (clenbuterol, modafinil and elevated testosterone levels) – 26th
  • Gianluca Occhino (tamoxifen) – 33rd

CrossFit has said that additional testing and the appeals process delayed the announcement of the failed tests and suspensions.

Justin Bergh, CrossFit Games General Manager, said, “Based on the behavior of certain athletes and allegations made through our support channels, we decided to change the timing and total number of samples collected from athletes outside the top five. There can be no tolerance for athletes who use PEDs at any level of competition, and the results from this will immediately affect our testing plan for subsequent events.”

CrossFit announced prior to the CrossFit Games that one individual athlete and two teams had tested positive for banned substances.