Wesley Botton

By Wesley Botton

Chief sports journalist

SA 100m record holder Carina Horn handed six-year doping ban

Horn could return to action in 2029 at the age of 40, but her elite career has effectively been shut down.

Carina Horn’s career looks to have come to a sudden end after South Africa’s top female sprinter was banned for six years following a second anti-doping rule violation.

According to the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) established by global body World Athletics in an attempt to clean up the sport, national 100m record holder Horn had tested positive for the prohibited substance Clenbuterol at a track meeting in Spain in June 2022.

By competing at the event, Horn had agreed to abide by the Basque Anti-Doping Act which handed down the initial suspension. The AIU then found her ban was in line with the World Anti-Doping Agency code.

This meant Horn was suspended from all local and international track and field competitions for a six-year period, and while she could return to action in 2029 at the age of 40, her career as an elite sprinter had effectively been shut down.

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“The athlete was sanctioned with a period of ineligibility of six years from 13 March 2023,” the AIU confirmed on Friday.

While it remained unclear whether 34-year-old Horn would be able to challenge the decision further, having already appealed, the AIU confirmed both her A and B samples had returned traces of Clenbuterol in Spain.

Previous ban

Horn, who made history in 2018 when she clocked 10.98 to become the first South African woman to dip under 11 seconds in the 100m sprint, was suspended in September 2019 after testing positive for two banned substances.

Claiming that her supplements had been contaminated, Horn was able to have a potential four-year ban reduced to a two-year ban at the time.

Returning to top-flight competition last year, she went on to secure the bronze medal at the African Championships in Mauritius.

Earlier this season, she won her fifth national 100m title at the SA Championships in Potchefstroom.

South Africa’s top woman sprinter for most of her senior career, Horn won 4x100m relay gold and 100m silver at the 2016 African Championships in Durban.

She also reached the 100m semi-finals at the 2015 and 2017 editions of the World Championships, as well as the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

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