World Anti-Doping Agency to review banned status of cannabis for athletes

The Guardian - Wed Sep 15 05:21

An advisory group to the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) will review whether cannabis should remain a banned substance, a move that comes after American track and field star Sha’Carri Richardson missed the Tokyo Games after testing positive for it.

The scientific review will be initiated next year, Wada said on Tuesday. Cannabis is currently prohibited in competition and will continue to be in 2022, it added.

“Following receipt of requests from a number of stakeholders, the [executive committee] endorsed the decision of the List Expert Advisory Group to initiate in 2022 a scientific review of the status of cannabis,” a Wada statement read.

“Cannabis is currently prohibited in competition and will continue to be in 2022.”

Richardson tested positive for a chemical found in cannabis during the US Olympic Track & Field trials in June, which wiped out her trial results. She was also hit with a one-month suspension.

The 21-year-old, who had been seen as a top contender in the 100 metres, has said she used cannabis to help cope with the death of her mother.

The suspension sparked an outpouring of sympathy and calls for a review of anti-doping rules, including by the US Anti-Doping Agency.