Drug positive at Berea nationals: M60 thrower Craig Shumaker

More details to come. But here’s the USADA press release. Appears to be someone who should have gotten a TUE waiver. USADA says: “Colorado Springs, Colo. (September 30, 2011) USADA announced today that Stephen Craig Shumaker of Glenmoore, Pennsylvania, an athlete in the sport of track and field, has tested positive for a prohibited substance and accepted a suspension for his doping offense. Laboratory analysis of a sample provided by Shumaker, 63, at the 2011 USA Masters Track & Field Championships, on July 28, 2011, in Berea, Ohio, resulted in an Adverse Analytical Finding for the administration of a steroid. Anabolic Androgenic Steroids are prohibited under the USADA Protocol for Olympic and Paralympic Movement Testing and the rules of the International Association of Athletics Federations, both of which have adopted the World Anti-Doping Code and the World Anti-Doping Agency Prohibited List.”

USADA applies a one-size-fits-all policy to masters, whose issues are complex.

The release continues:

The doping offense involved the use of a prescribed medication under the care of a physician but without first seeking a therapeutic use exemption as required by the applicable rules.

Shumaker accepted a two-year period of ineligibility, which began on September 9, 2011, the day he accepted a provisional suspension. As a result of the sanction, Shumaker is also disqualified from all competitive results obtained on and subsequent to July 28, 2011, the day his sample was collected, including forfeiture of any medals, points, and prizes.

In an effort to aid athletes, as well as all support team members such as parents and coaches, in understanding the rules applicable to them, USADA provides comprehensive instruction on its website on the testing process and prohibited substances, how to obtain permission to use a necessary medication, and the risks and dangers of taking supplements as well as performance-enhancing and recreational drugs. In addition, the agency manages a drug reference hotline, Drug Reference Online (www.GlobalDRO.com), conducts educational sessions with National Governing Bodies and their athletes,
and proactively distributes a multitude of educational materials, such as the Prohibited List, easy-reference wallet cards, periodic newsletters, and protocol and policy reference documentation.
USADA is responsible for the testing and results management process for athletes in the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Movement, and is equally dedicated to preserving the integrity of sport through research initiatives and educational programs.

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October 1, 2011

20 Responses

  1. peter taylor - October 1, 2011

    I know you are busy and a bit tired, Ken, but the head should say:

    M60 thrower Craig Shumaker

    Of course, many in the masters T&F community will want to get Craig’s side of the story in the interest of fairness and with the idea that we might be able to learn something from this episode.

  2. Ken Stone - October 1, 2011

    Thanks, Peter. Fix is made.

    Here’s what’s occupying my time this weekend:

  3. Milan Jamrich - October 1, 2011

    I dont like it that he took steroids, but I have some respect for him. He could have said that 1) it was a mistake in testing or 2) he did not know that his supplement had steroids in it or 3) he needed it for muscle weakness and forgot to ask for permission. Instead, he accepted the suspension and did not make excuses which would have made him look like an idiot. There is something to be said for that.

  4. Terry Parks - October 1, 2011

    It is really hard to see this all over the web. Whether it is fair or not, this casts a shadow over everyone involved in Masters track. I read about this in Sports Illustrated and it is up on Track and Field News website. We rarely get any publicity from the mainstream media, but they love to put this kind of stuff up.

    Whether we like it or not, drug testing is here. If you are competing at the National level, you should expect to be tested and thus have the proper TUE waivers if necessary. Else, you can take your chances.

  5. Mary Harada - October 1, 2011

    I read it first in the Boston Globe today- not a big headline – just a 2-3 line report on the side and not in the sports section. “USADA reports etc”.
    I agree with Milan that there was no apparent effort to “excuse” the result. And since it was reported so quickly by USADA- there has been no B test and protest. Perhaps it will serve as a cautionary tale to masters who do not pay attention to the drug testing information and just assume it does not apply to them.
    Drug education needs to be ongoing so that people who get prescriptions for prohibited drugs or those that need a TUE do not find themselves in this situation.

  6. Steven Sashen - October 1, 2011

    I don’t think the issue is that Masters track has steroid users. I think it’s that if you get a doctor’s note, it’s legal to use them!

    “Low Testosterone”, for example, is NOT a medical diagnosis unless you have a condition where you produce none (or almost none) and have symptoms consistent with that. Otherwise, it’s just an opinion.

  7. Milan Jamrich - October 1, 2011

    There is no guarantee that you get a TUE just because a friend of yours who is a doctor prescribed anabolic steroids. If you are a 300 lbs thrower it is hard to claim a muscle weakness, but no question most of the TUEs get rightly approved

  8. JStone - October 1, 2011

    There are numerous doctors running so-called anti-aging clinics all over this country that will gladly precscribe testosterone, hgh, steroids, estrogen blockers, clomid, prolactin, and other drugs to just about anyone over the age of 18.

  9. Ken Stone - October 1, 2011

    Anyone have contact info for Craig — an email address? Send private note to TrackCEO@aol.com

  10. Ken Stone - October 2, 2011

    Apparently many newspaper ran the news with a blurb like this, which appeared in the Bend, Oregon, newspaper and the Albany Times Union in New York:

    Masters track athlete, 63, banned for steroids: A 63-year-old Masters track and field athlete has been suspended from competition for two years for testing positive for a doctor-prescribed steroid without a therapeutic use exemption. S. Craig Shumaker of Glenmoore, Pa., tested positive at the USA Masters Track & Field Championships in July in Berea, Ohio. He won the men’s 60 shot put and was second in the discus for his age group. The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency said Friday those results will be forfeited.

  11. Anthony Treacher - October 2, 2011

    I have grown fascinated by the psychology of the onlookers involved in sports complaints and suspensions. I appreciate where Milan Jamrich is coming from in pointing out that Craig Shumaker
    did at least not make excuses. But and it is a big BUT, how on earth can you have ANY respect for an athlete who then DELIBERATELY takes drugs?

  12. Bubba Sparks - October 2, 2011

    Unfortunately he would not have gotten the TUE even if he applied. I know because I worked on getting my own for about eight months leading up to Sacramento, to no avail. As posted here before, complete with lab result, my testosterone levels are <20 though the average for my age is 550. The machine goes no lower than 20 so I get the "<" sign rather than a 0. So like Steve said, I have and make no testosterone. I struggle to build muscle and then my body eats it for fuel.

    In my process I met with three different types of physicians (TUE requires at least 2) who have all said that my condition is exactly why steroids exist and that I should and need to be on a program. But before I would go down that road I took several lab reports over a year and these physician reports and made a submission for a TUE. I even included an article about a 41 year old golfer that WADA had given an exemption. My application was rejected because, “it is not a factor in my daily life and only an inconvenience to me for sport”.

    I continue to enter meets and withdraw knowing that my next jump will put me out for 6-8 weeks. It was tough stepping off the runway in Sacramento in 4th place knowing my PR for the year, or lower, would win or at least medal. I even had to quit in Houston at NSG while tied for the lead just to be assured I could limp through Sacramento. I won World Masters Games in Sydney but had to stop there as well, and Albuquerque, Reno PV Summit, etc.

    Until masters have “level” testing older athletes will be penalized. For example, my physician estimates that the highest I could get my level even with supplementation is about 220, or less than ½ of normal. But even at that low level I would test positive because the test will see a foreign source of testosterone. So until level testing happens, which is probably never, I will just continue to try and hang in there long enough to medal without getting hurt.

  13. Bubba Sparks - October 2, 2011

    As a follow up, I know there are far worse conditions that require medication that will return a positive test. I REALLY feel for those athletes.

  14. Dave - October 2, 2011

    This is sad. Those of us who are clean and spend a considerable amount of time to maintain a high level of fitness is why we don’t look like the poor fat slobs that we pass on the street or at work. I had a significant injury a few years ago while running with MRI to prove it but I was back competing in several months. One colleague, who has never seen the inside of a gym, said in front of me and others that “No wonder you healed.You Masters guys must all be juiced up.” Now a headline like that above comes out for the world to see. As I said, sad.

  15. Milan Jamrich - October 2, 2011

    Well, at least the throwers that lost against Craig Shumaker now know why….

  16. Milan Jamrich - October 2, 2011

    @Anthony Treacher I understand what you are saying and in many ways you are right. I am competing for over 40 years now and I have seen many people taking drugs. Many of them a very nice people. Not one of them took drugs because of medical reasons. They just want to win no matter what. I dont have such a drive, so I do not completely understand it. Is it physiological, psychological, is it genetics? Is it like obesity? I can control my appetite (sort of), but they cannot.

  17. Who's your daddy ?? - October 2, 2011

    The fact is as a male; we all lose a little testosterone as we age. Some more than others. Once you go down the road of allowing “medical correction,” people will over medicate. Then you may as well put us in the USTDA….United States Track & Druggie Association.

  18. Stefan Waltermann - October 2, 2011

    I threw the discus in the M 60 in Berea. What did I learn so far from this episode? If you want your 15 minutes of fame as a masters thrower, make sure to get tested positive. The Associated Press will pick it up and you find your full name, age, home town and offense in ALL newspapers in the US, large and small. For good measures, ESPN will give you exposure as well. Fame or infamy? Take your chances.

  19. Anthony Treacher - October 3, 2011

    @Milan. Thanks. Glad you took my comment well. I was a bit worried there.

    As an athlete banned for a year for bringing the sport into disrepute for complaining about my federation, I am fascinated by all this because I cannot help comparing onlookers’ attitudes to me with their attitudes to the drug takers.

    @Stefan. Greetings again. Exactly as you say, “if you want your 15 minutes of fame as a masters thrower, get tested positive.” But somehow that does not seamlessly translate into the “infamy” the athlete deserves does it? It is almost that the athletics community accepts what drug takers do. Is it because the taking of drugs is a deliberate, macho act in some way? Something almost positive, like gambling on not being found out? Daring to defy the system?

    By comparison the athletics community has no truck with an athlete who files a complaint, because complaining is somehow negative, nerdish. I assure you, the masters athletics community treats the drugs taker with more respect. And he gets a hearing and appeal. Weird.

  20. Mike Fortunato - May 15, 2012

    Bubba: if your testosterone is <20 you should really take the medication and restrict your competition to the many meets that do not test. Your skeleton and joints will be weakened and at risk with testosterone so low, so training and throwing are not safe without testosterone supplementation. Health first — skip the big meets! That's my recommendation. Too bad masters athletics doesn't accommodate the healthful decisions older athletes sometimes need to make — but track and field has never been terribly enlightened. (In my neck of the woods, high school kids can't even wear their watches during meets.)

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