LONDON, U.K. – Fort St. John native Jamie Herrington has been stripped of her title at the 2015 IMMAF World Championships of Amateur Mixed Martial Arts.
An independent tribunal appointed by the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation found that Herrington committed an Anti-Doping Rule Violation at the event in Las Vegas. As result, she was stripped of her medal, and has been banned from competition for four years.
Herrington participated in a number of matches in the tournament back in July, 2015, subsequently winning the gold medal in the 145 lb. weight class. She submitted to a post-bout substances test immediately after one of her matches. Two samples were collected, and then submitted to the World Anti-Doping Agency Laboratory at UCLA for analysis.
The “A” sample showed a positive result for amphetamine, which is a prohibited substance under Section 6 of the WADA Code, and therefore a breach of the IMMAF’s Anti-Doping Rules. Herrington was notified of the result on September 3rd, 2015 and received a provisional suspension on that date.
At Herrington’s request, her “B” sample was analysed, and also presented a positive result for amphetamine. In reaching a decision on consequences to be imposed, the independent tribunal considered the Athlete’s explanation as to how the substance came to be present in her system, whether there was evidence of intention and the Athlete’s degree of fault in relation to this violation.
However, as no reductions were found to be applicable, the period of ineligibility imposed is 4 years commencing from the date of provisional suspension. Ms Herrington will be eligible to compete again from 3rd September 2019. Additionally, Ms. Herrington’s results from the 2015 IMMAF World Championships are disqualified with all resulting consequences. In this instance this will result in the forfeiture of Ms Herrington’s gold medal, disqualification of her results and subsequent revision of medals in that category. Right of appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport has not been taken up by the athlete. No orders for costs were sought or made by IMMAF.
Herrington spoke with Energeticcity.ca and continued to proclaim her innocence, stating that she took Nyquil the night before her title fight, as she was not feeling well. She says that the pseudoephedrine that is present in Nyquil and acts as a decongestant is also a stimulant. According to her, the pseudoephedrine caused the false positive result for amphetamine in both of her results. “The people who know me and the friends and fmily that are close to me know that I am not involved in drugs or alcohol. That’s what I have to go on at the end of the day,” said Herrington. She added that she feels that the four-year suspension was also exceptionally harsh, pointing out to the suspensions handed out to several high-profile UFC fighters for using banned substances were all less than hers.
Fivestar MMA responded to the announcement this afternoon in a statement:
“We were shocked and disappointed to hear from IMMAF about Jamie’s failed drug test. We have always had a no drugs/steroids/gang affiliation rule amongst our fight team in an effort to keep only the highest standard of athlete representing our team.
When receiving the news last year from IMMAF and Team Canada representatives we felt we had no choice but to remove Jamie from our fight team, the gym and any competition hosted by Fivestar. It was a heartbreaking situation for our coaching staff here who offered her a lot of support, training and funding to get her to the national tryouts and worlds just to be disappointed by her decisions.
Although it seems somewhat steep perhaps, We appreciate IMMAF’s stance on the punishment as they have been working very hard to have MMA added as an Olympic sport and such standards are necessary.
Jamie is an extremely talented athlete and we wish her the best in her future endeavours.”
A full copy of the decision is available here: http://www.immaf.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/09.02.16-HERRINGTON.pdf.