Baku, February 12, AZERTAC
The Norwegian Sports Confederation on Friday suspended cross-country skier Therese Johaug for 13 months after she tested positive for steroids, the ski federation said, according to AFP.
The suspension is a month shorter than the 14-month ban the Norwegian Anti-Doping Organisation had sought, thereby allowing Johaug, a seven-time world champion, to participate in the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in February 2018.
The 28-year-old skier has been temporarily suspended since testing positive for traces of the anabolic steroid clostebol, banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), during an out-of-competition drug test on September 16th.
Johaug said the steroid was contained in a lip cream called Trofodermin, which she used to treat burns during a training session at high altitude in Italy in late August.
National ski team doctor Fredrik Bendiksen, who has insisted he did not realise the cream contained clostebol, has taken full responsibility and resigned from his post in October.
If Friday's suspension is upheld, Johaug will be able to resume competition in November.
Johaug, the Norwegian Anti-Doping Organisation, the World Anti-Doping Agency, the International Olympic Committee and the International Ski Federation all have the possibility to launch an appeal.
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