Two prominent professional triathletes announced today that they have tested positive for a banned substance they unknowingly took. Lauren Barnett’s press release is below, stating she has accepted a six month sanction because of a contaminated salt tablet. Beth McKenzie announced her news on her blog here, and is still in the middle of a lengthy and no doubt expensive process of proving her innocence. Both stories, a huge warning sign for athletes.



Triathlete Lauren Barnett Accepts 6-Month Sanction For Positive Test Caused By Contaminated Salt Tablet, Will Be Eligible To Resume Racing On February 4, 2017

Los Angeles, February 3, 2017 – Lauren has agreed to accept a 6-month sanction, which will end on February 4, 2017, for a positive test caused by a contaminated supplement. After finding out that her July 17, 2016 sample had tested positive for trace amounts of a banned substance that she never knowingly took, Lauren was determined to find out the cause. Subsequent testing by two independent laboratories on both the bottle she had used on the day of her positive test and another sealed bottle from an entirely different batch and lot number proved that a salt tablet that Lauren had taken was contaminated and caused this positive test. The World Triathlon Corporation, having recognized the salt tablet contamination, has agreed to significantly reduce her sanction to the minimum timeframe allowed, and as this has been completed, Lauren may resume racing when she is ready.

In responding to this sanction, Lauren Barnett stated as follows:

“As I look for the silver lining in what has been the most difficult and emotional ordeal I’ve ever been through, I am happy that in cooperation with WTC, we were able to establish convincing scientific proof of supplement contamination. I no longer have to wonder how a substance got into my body when I never would have knowingly or intentionally put it there. I have been extremely diligent and careful in the way I approach competing by pursuing only the highest of standards in the nutrition supplement industry. I never would have imagined that a salt tablet, an electrolyte replacement that endurance athletes routinely rely on while racing in hot and humid conditions, could be the root cause of all of this. I’ve always been a person who is honest and authentic, and I do take pride in what I’ve achieved through hard work and determination. But it’s the process and the journey that has been my focus – not the results. I’m passionate about this sport, the community of athletes, and the healthy lifestyle it provides, and I look forward to the day when I will resume the journey by racing again with that same passion and peace in my heart. I simply wouldn’t have gotten through this without my faith and my family, but now I’m looking forward to moving on and using this painful experience for good.”

About The Author

Stef Hanson. Chief.

Chief and founder of WITSUP

Serious about what I do, but don’t take myself too seriously

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One Response

  1. Jackie Nunes

    Why is there no mention of the salt tab manufacturer? Do you all know? As a purely ‘enthusiast’ level athlete, I’d be absolutely gutted to actually win or place in a race and have it taken away. I wish the best to these two, this article made me cry. As did Beth’s blog. She’s not being able to leave triathlon on her own terms.


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