- Sport: Athletics
- Issue: Appeal Arbitration
- Type: Anti-Doping
- Tribunal: Charles Hollander QC, Professor Gordon McInnes, Blondel Thompson
- Decision date: 30 July 2018
- Outcome: At first instance the Tribunal imposed a sanction of 4 year's period of Ineligibility. A subsequent Appeal was dismissed.
Both First Instance and Appeal Decisions in the cases of UK Anti-Doping v Joanna Blair and Joanna Blair v UK Anti-Doping (Appeal) have been published by the National Anti-Doping Panel (NADP).
On 24 June 2017, javelin thrower Joanna Blair was subject to an Out-of-Competition test whilst representing Team GB in France.
Analysis of Ms Blair’s urine sample returned an Adverse Analytical Finding (“AAF”) for 17β-hydroxy-17a-methylandrosta-1,4-dien-3-one, a metabolite of metandienone. Ms Blair was subsequently charged with an Anti-Doping Rule Violation (ADRV) for the Presence of a Prohibited Substance under IAAF Anti-Doping Rule (ADR) Article 2.1 and the matter referred to the NADP for determination.
Following a hearing in London, the NADP Tribunal consisting of Mr Christopher Quinlan QC (Chairman), Professor Dorian Haskard and Ms Lorraine Johnson were not satisfied that Ms Blair had established how the metandienone entered her system and as such, had not discharged her burden to establish the ADRV was not intentional, as defined in the ADR. The applicable sanction imposed was therefore four years.
Ms Blair submitted an appeal on 15 March 2018. The Arbitral Appeal Tribunal consisting of Mr Charles Hollander QC (Chair), Ms Blondel Thompson and Professor Gordon McInnes found that there had been no error in the way in which the First Instance Tribunal applied weight to the evidence it had been required to consider. As such, the Appeal of Ms Blair was dismissed and the first instance decision upheld.