German eventer Julia Krajewski’s mount Samourai Du Thot tested positive for the controlled substance firocoxib at the FEI European Eventing Championships (Poland) held Aug. 16-20, where the German team took the silver medal.
Krajewski received notification of the positive test from the Fédération Equestre Internationale in mid-October, and she requested that the B sample be tested.
Added Nov. 9: The FEI informed Krajewski and the German federation that the B-sample for Samourai Du Thot also tested positive for firocoxib on Nov. 9.
The German federation posted a statement on the website that said it is now a certainty that Krajewski will be disqualified, and the German team will lose the silver medal.
“As a member of the German team, which [was] one of the favorites traveling to Strzegom, I was very well aware that it was highly probable that my horse would be subject to medication control,” Krajewski said in a statement on her Facebook page. “I firmly agree with the doping prevention rules and know about my obligations and responsibilities as a rider and the inevitable consequences. I would never, ever put a potential medal at risk by such a grossly negligent act as to administer a drug during a championship (let alone the one with the longest waiting period on the market), and I hope that everybody else understands the absurdity of the idea that I could have done that on purpose.”
After examining how the substance might have entered her horse’s system and finding no way of proving its origin, Krajewski opted to receive the FEI’s administrative penalty. The administrative penalty in this case is a fine of 1,500 Swiss francs and administrative costs of 2,000 Swiss francs but not a competition ban.
“Sam,” an 11-year-old Selle Français (Milor Landais—Melitos Du Thot, Flipper D’Elle), also tested positive for firocoxib in routine testing by the German National Doping Agency performed on Aug. 23.
Firocoxib, classified as a controlled substance by the FEI, has an anti-inflammatory affect and is found in two products: Equioxx for horses and Previcox for dogs.
“Equioxx has never been used in my stables, neither for my own nor for other horses,” Krajewski’s statement read. “My attending veterinarian at home does not use it for my horses. Also our team veterinarian, Carsten Rohde, has confirmed that he does not use the [medication] for squad horses, and did not take any of it to the training camp or the championships in Poland. Furthermore, at no time during the training camp or the championships, any reason occurred to treat Samurai Du Thot with a pain reliever.
“We have questioned various veterinarians, who concordantly replied that Equioxx is a rather uncommon [medication] for sport horses because it can be detected for a very long time,” her statement continued. “According to the ADMR-(Anti Doping and Medication Control Rules), it has a waiting period of 30 days. Thus a positive medication control is to be expected if the medicine is given at short notice—an absolute ‘no go’ for a team rider.”
Krajewski was able to determine that the firocoxib entered Sam’s system after Aug. 3, as he tested negative for any substances on that date in routine testing done on team contenders by the German Olympic Committee.
“Furthermore, there was not just a trace but a substantial amount of Firocoxib detected,” Krajewski said in her statement. “The detected level together with the relevant decomposition time suggest an administration between Friday afternoon and Saturday morning (after dressage, before the cross-country test). Together with the result of sample B, we hopefully receive documents that may hopefully allow further conclusions about the exact time or amount of the ingestion. Unfortunately, there is no video camera survey in the stables in Strzegom, thus we cannot fall back on video analysis but have to rely on medical data.”
Krajewski, who also won this year’s Luhmuhlen CCI**** (Germany) with Sam, has eliminated the possibility of feed contamination and/or administration of a drug intended for another horse, but she is investigating the possibility of contamination via the dog medication Previcox.
“I am deeply disturbed by the news of the positive medication control of Samourai Du Thot, especially as I still lack any explanatory approach and the consequences of confirmation by the B sample would not only affect me personally,” said Krajewski. “If we had to return the silver medal, that would be incredibly unfortunate for my entire team.”