Ottawa and Toronto Marathon finisher Ethiopian Etaferahu Temesgen Wodaj test positive; earns provisional suspension

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© Copyright – 2019 – Athletics Illustrated

The Russians and Kenyans are not the only nations to be tested with more vigor by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU), Ethiopia is now learning of their own athlete’s doping practices.

In October, African Games 10,000-metre champion Berehanu Tsegu was provisionally suspended by the AIU after testing positive for erythropoietin (EPO), a blood booster.

The AIU continues to perform outstanding work, in this case provisionally suspending Ethiopian marathon runner Etaferahu Temesgen Wodaj, who also tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs.

EPO was again, the drug of choice.

She finished the 2019 Tamarak Ottawa Marathon in third place in the time of 2:28:44. In September, she crossed the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon finish line in 2:27:21 good for eighth place.

She owns a half-marathon best of 1:10:56 and a 10K of 32:17.

Her marathon performances have been wildly erratic having run as slow as 2:46:05 in 2017, 2:40:10 in 2018, but 2:29:24 in 2015 and her best of 2:27:21 from 2019 – a red flag moment.

The 30-year-old is provisionally suspended from racing before her hearing takes place which will be conducted by the AIU or world governing body World Athletics (IAAF).

In 2018, World Athletics named Ethiopia top of a list of being at most of risk at doping.

After the announcement that Ethiopia was on the list the Ethiopian Athletics Federation conducted an education program for athletes to inform them of the dangers of doping.

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