29th December 2020
USADA announced today that Brenda Martinez, of Big Bear, Calif., an athlete in the sport of track and field, has tested positive for a prohibited substance, which was determined to have been ingested by her without fault or negligence. As a result, Martinez will not face a period of ineligibility for her positive test.P
“This is our sixth no-fault case in just one year, meaning that yet another athlete has been unjustly charged with a violation and publicly recognized for ingesting a prohibited substance from a completely innocent source, such as contaminated medication, meat, or water, and despite there being no effect on performance,” said Travis T. Tygart, Chief Executive Officer of USADA. “USADA strongly objects to this requirement under the rules and will continue to urge WADA to reform the system to be fairer for athletes.”
Martinez, 33, tested positive for hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) as the result of an out-of-competition urine sample she provided on September 10, 2020. HCTZ is a Specified Substance in the class of Diuretics and Masking Agents and is prohibited at all times under the USADA Protocol for Olympic and Paralympic Movement Testing, the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee National Anti-Doping Policy, and the World Athletics Anti-Doping Rules, all of which have adopted the World Anti-Doping Code and the World Anti-Doping Agency Prohibited List.
During USADA’s investigation into the circumstances of her case, Martinez provided USADA with records of a permitted oral prescription medication that she was taking at the time of her positive test. This permitted medication, which Martinez takes at the direction of a physician, did not list HCTZ or any other prohibited substances on the label. However, detailed laboratory analysis subsequently conducted on multiple tablets of the athlete’s medication confirmed HCTZ contamination at a level consistent with Martinez’s positive test. Martinez will not face a period of ineligibility for her positive test, and because the sample was collected out-of-competition, there are no competitive results to disqualify.