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Wilfrid Laurier University middle-distance runner Bettina Boucher has received a one-year suspension for doping after a Jan. 13 in-competition test revealed ephedrine in her urine, the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport (CCES) announced yesterday.

The third-year student from Whitby, Ont., won the 1,500m event at the 37th annual Can-Am Track Classic held at the University of Windsor that day. One of the stars of the Laurier Golden Hawks track team, Boucher was named an OUA second team all-star in 2017.

Commonly found in over-the-counter decongestant medication, ephedrine is a stimulant that may enhance performance in runners. It is also sometimes used by athletes trying to lose weight. It’s prohibited in concentrations of more than 10 micrograms per millilitre. 

Boucher’s suspension runs until Feb. 3, 2019. She did not respond to a request for an interview.

The CCES is the independent, national, not-for-profit organization that administers the Canadian Anti-Doping Program (CADP).

UPDATE–March 29, 2018: The CCES’s detailed report on Boucher’s case reveals that the sanction was reduced from the standard two-year suspension to one year, because she is not a national or international athlete as defined by the Canadian Anti-doping Program, a medical professional provided credible evidence of a pre-existing medical condition and her use of the banned substance was unconnected to sport or training. Details of the pre-existing condition were not revealed in the report. 

Boucher reached out to Canadian Running via Facebook Messenger, stating, “the CCES determined it was not performance related and non-intentional.” 

The details of the report can be read here.

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