Nick Delpopolo, American 7th Place Finisher In -73 KG Judo Tests Positive For Marijuana

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 30: Chi Yip Cheung of Hong Kong, China (white) competes with Nicholas Delpopolo of the United States on Day 3 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at ExCeL on July 30, 2012 in London, England. (Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images)

Nick Delpopolo, the American judoka, has tested positive for marijuana at the 2012 London Olympics. His 7th place finish will be removed from the books and he is no longer welcome at the Games. Delpopolo was the world's 12th ranked judoka in his -73 kg weight class coming into the Olympics, but his 7th place finish was an impressive achievement.

The Olympic Disciplinary Report (found here) has a few tasty excerpts:

In such written statement, which was dated 5 August 2012, the Athlete acknowledged that his drug test conducted on 30 July 2012 at the London Olympic Games returned as positive for marijuana. The Athlete accepted the disqualification of his result from the men's 73 kg Judo event of the London Olympic Games, and declared that he would return his Olympic identity and accreditation card, and leave London to return to his home in the USA on 7 August 2012. The Athlete also explained that his positive test was caused by his inadvertent consumption of food (prior to his leaving for the London Olympic Games) that he did not realize had been baked with marijuana. The Athlete apologized to the USOC, his teammates and his fans and indicated that he was embarrassed by this mistake. The Athlete further indicated that he waived his right to be heard before the Disciplinary Commission.

More quotes after the jump - including the final decision of the ODC and the penalties assigned to Delpopolo.

The final decision of the ODC:

After reviewing the file, including the above-noted written statement from the Athlete, the Disciplinary Commission unanimously concluded that the Athlete had committed an antidoping rule violation pursuant to Article 2.1 of the World Anti-Doping Code (hereafter the "Code") and Articles 2 and 12 of the Rules in that there was the presence of the prohibited substance, 11-nor-delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol-9-carboxylic acid, in his body.

The full penalty is laid out at the end of the document:

The Athlete, Mr. Nicholas Delpopolo, United States of America, Judo:

(i) is disqualified from the men's 73 kg Judo event of the 2012 London Olympic Games
where he placed 7th;

(ii) shall have his diploma in the above-mentioned event withdrawn; and

(iii) shall have his Olympic identity and accreditation card cancelled and withdrawn

This positive test does not diminish the achievements of the other athletes on the team (like Kayla Harrison's gold medal, Marti Malloy's bronze medal or Travis Stevens's fifth place finish), but having a prominent member of the team embarrass himself in this manner is never good. Whether the ingestion of the marijuana was purposeful or accidental, Delpopolo failed in controlling his diet to the standards that an Olympic athlete is currently being held to.

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