CrossFit Games

BREAKING: Anna Fragkou, Six Others Fail Drug Tests

October 10, 2019 by
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On the eve of the CrossFit Open, CrossFit Inc. announced that Anna Fragkou is in violation of CrossFit’s Drug Testing Policy stemming from a test administered at the 2019 CrossFit Games. Fragkou made her rookie appearance at the CrossFit Games as Greece’s national champion in 2019, finishing 9th in what was one of the breakout performances on the women’s side. 

Tough timing: On the day the CrossFit world braces for the start of a new season, it appears that her career may be over. Fragkou’s sample came back positive for Oral Turinabol, an anabolic steroid, and the same substance present in Chantelle Loehner’s failed test earlier this year. Fragkou is facing a four-year ban as a result. 

Her Response: “So it is clear, I had never even heard of this substance before. I have never taken any such substances and I have always tried to be very conscious about what I eat and consume.”

  • Fragkou: “I use a wide variety of supplements and my diet is pretty diverse. Still I have been very aware at every given time about what I am putting in my system and therefore this is a mystery to me and I will continue searching for the reason for why this has come to be. As far as I have managed to read up on this stuff it is clear that oral-turinabol is no joke. It is a heavy anabolic and something that can be seriously harmful for females. I would never ever willingly put something like that in my system.”

According to Fragkou, the test occurred shortly after Friday night’s Mary event in the Coliseum, when she was pulled aside for drug testing along with one other athlete. 

  • She was notified of her failed test a few weeks after the Games concluded on August 22 and she requested to have her B sample tested.
  • Both A and B samples tested positive for the banned substance, prompting Fragkou to submit a written appeal. 

Implications of this announcement. 

The big question that remains is how this will ultimately affect placing on the leaderboard, and prize money. In the past it was a simple solution – every athlete completed every event, so in the event of a failed test, everyone bumps up one. 

Now it’s not so easy. The nature of the cuts, and the changes to the system makes that same adjustment a little less clean. Danielle Brandon, who finished 11th and would presumably move up to 10th, was cut after the first event Saturday and denied the opportunity to finish the competition and potentially move up the leaderboard.

  • This is a crucial detail when you consider the increase in prize money, and exposure from being one of the final 10 athletes for six events.
  • Brandon was originally slated to receive $18,000 for her 11th place finish at the Games, based on the eventual point spread for the top 10, a 5th place event finish on average (out of 10) the rest of the way would have moved her to 5th overall, so it’s reasonable to assume she had a chance. 
  • The prize money for 10th is $21,000, for 5th it’s $35,000. That’s a 67% increase in prize money and something we’re pretty sure Brandon would have liked the opportunity to compete for. 

In addition to Fragkou, six other athletes were announced by CrossFit Inc. as being in breach of the Drug Testing Policy. The list includes Katie Trombetta, as well as Mauro Acevedo and Justin Sforzini, who’s positive results from non-licensed events earned them sanctions as well. You can read the full list of athletes here.

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