What has the WADA Code done to Motocross/Supercross?


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In a sport where the public perception is ‘you only have to twist the throttle,’ the machine does the rest what has the WADA Code (banned performance-enhancing drugs) done to the sport. It has actually done a lot, and the fear of what you fuel the human body has come under more fire with the how Broc Tickles 1 day diet mistake may have cost him his career.

The first person to be found failing a WADA drug test is the AMA’s James Stewart he was pinned (positive sample) in 2014 for Adderall. Adderall is an Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder – ADHD medication, an Amphetamine/dextroamphetamine substance which belongs to a class of drugs known as stimulants, helping to increase the ability to pay attention (stay focused on an activity) which if you look at James’ career, man, who hasn’t he had some vast crashes and ragdoll moments (knockouts). If you want to think of a conspiracy theory one could assume that this was the start of the fall of Factory Suzuki. James received a 15-month suspension which effectively ended his career; he tried to make a racing return however it was unsuccessful.

The second to test positive, unfortunately, we head to the Aussie backyard with Jake and Matt Moss testing for Ostarine. Ostarine is a Selective androgen receptor modulator SARM, which are intended to have the same kind of effects as androgenic drugs like anabolic steroids but be much more selective in their action. SARMS are an ‘experimental’ area as no ‘real’ funding has been put into human trials, the SARM original purpose for treatment for Cancer patients (muscle wastage) and osteoporosis suffers. Jake was riding for Kawasaki Australia and retired from Supercross and Motocross competition when his test was positive (also received a four-year ban). There are 5 other athletes in Australia that have also tested positive for Ostarine, Jake’s twin brother and teammate Motocross/Supercross Athlete Matt Moss, weightlifting’s Marcus Lewis, Bodybuilder Nathan Tait, Triathlete Lisa Marangon and Wrestler Vinod Kumar, and this four year ban is an Olympic Cycle, so in other words to prevent an athlete from competing in the next Olympic Games. For a sport that does not compete on the Olympic stage, four years is a career-ending ban, and honestly unnecessary as a rider suffering a broken femur can take at least 18 months to make a return, and they are noticeable behind the eight ball. For Motocross and Supercross to be lumped in a ban for Olympic Sports is unjust, two years would do the same thing as four in motocross/supercross. And with only 10 Motocross Rounds and 4 Supercross Rounds are Aussie races classed as Professional Athletes?

The Fourth Athlete to test positive is privateer Cade Clason; he got nabbed for Adderall in 2017, this case is unique as Cade had submitted a TUE a Therapeutic Use Exemption it just wasn’t approved for that year. Now in Australia TUE’s are administered Australian Sports Drug Medical Advisory Committee (ASDMAC), and a TUE approval ‘may’ protect athletes from receiving a sanction if a prohibited substance is found in their sample. It looks like that AMA Athletes have to apply for a TUE via USADA, and in Cade’s case the TUE wasn’t properly approved, so in other words, USADA is making very difficult for athletes to use Adderall or the FIM (Federation of International Motorsport) while being a professional athlete? All the press releases stat FIM involvement so where was the TUE sent? If it was the FIM why are they being so difficult? There is no anti-doping link on their website, is it a language barrier issue or just plain stubbornness? In the court of public opinion as Cade is a ‘privateer’ suspended for 16 months hasn’t gone down that well, and he has been racing in a federation that is not affiliated with the FIM and still taking his prescribed medication (one assumes).

Now to Broc Tickle, the fifth athlete to test positive for a banned substance Adverse Analytical Finding of 5-methylhexan-2-amine, a specified substance under Section 6 (Stimulants) of the 2018 FIM Prohibited List. Broc has been adamant he did not “intentionally or negligently, ingested any prohibited substance, and specifically, the alleged substance I allegedly had in my system on February 10, 2018.” Broc’s suspension length has not been stated as yet. Tickle was riding for Red Bull KTM with his contract being withdrawn due to the positive test.

So what has the WADA Code done? Placed the sport in shambles, especially with Broc stating that he had not intentional taken anything. The KJ rule if something is ingested then the human body has to break a substance down, and as we are all different any substance will react differently, ie someone who is allergic to peanuts and someone who isn’t allergic to peanuts (allergy suffer could die from ingesting peanuts), so if someone doesn’t inject it, and where an athlete has to twist the throttle on a bike it shouldn’t have years plus suspension. A motorsports (motocross/supercross) athlete will have more of an advantage in racing scenarios with a ‘big bore,’ you know the lovely bolt on barrel and piston kits that have 249cc written on the outside and 280cc plus on the inside competing in an MX2/250cc class.

In Australia, with Motocross/Supercross being a minority sport it is all about that little extra Government Funding for “fair play in sport” and Motorcycling Australia doesn’t have the funds to implement their own testing program. Even though the Aussie medical system is fantastic, to have blood/urine tests completed is quite costly and will require a trip to a General Practitioner to get a script for the test, then you’ll have to go somewhere to have the test completed and then the test would be sent away, plus everyone would have to be WADA accredited and the laboratory would have to be WADA endorsed and there is only one in Sydney, so it is easier for Motorcycling Australia to palm off the drug testing too ASADA (Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority), and quite rightly so.

Why does a country need to be Affiliated with the FIM, to make it easier for international athletes to compete in events? KJ supposes that could be a theory, and honestly can’t think of much more, the FIM seam to be money hungry with the service they provide, this opinion is made due to the price of the IMN (International Meeting Number) which I think is around eight hundred Aussie bucks… for a registered number… hmmm will leave you with your own conclusion on that.

At the end of the day, KJ agrees with the drug testing, KJ doesn’t agree with the penalties, and in Australia, a person will receive less jail time for assault than a person who tests positive for a performance-enhancing substance. Therefore, the FIM needs to step in (and step up), advise WADA that Motocross/Supercross is not an Olympic Sport. Therefore, all penalties should be at least halved or make Motocross and Supercross an Olympic Sport.

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Main Sponsor Tally:

Energy Drink ======

  • Red Bull: 2: James Stewart, Brock Tickle
  • Monster Energy: 2: Jake Moss, Matt Moss

Brands ======

  • Suzuki: 1: James Stewart
  • Kawasaki: 2: Jake Moss, Matt Moss
  • Honda:  1: Cade Clason
  • KTM: 1: Brock Tickle

Athlete Status: =====

  • Professional: 4: James Stewart, Jake Moss, Matt Moss, Brock Tickle
  • Privateer:  1: Cade Clason

Country Status: =====

  • United States: 3: James Stewart, Cade Clason, Brock Tickle,
  • Australia:  2: Jake Moss, Matt Moss