Show Jumping

Court of Arbitration for Sport to hear Canadian equestrian's doping appeal

The reinstatement of Canada's show jumping team in the Tokyo Summer Olympics rides on upcoming appeals to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Nicole Walker and Equestrian Canada are battling her doping violation at the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru.

Nicole Walker appealing positive test that DQ'ed her 4th place at Pan Am Games

The Court of Arbitration for Sport will hear Nicole Walker's appeal of her disqualification from 2019 Pan Am Games in Lima, Peru, after testing positive for a metabolite of cocaine. (Jeff McIntosh/Canadian Press )

The reinstatement of Canada's show jumping team in the Tokyo Summer Olympics rides on upcoming appeals to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Nicole Walker and Equestrian Canada are battling her doping violation at the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru.

Her appeal is before the Swiss-based CAS on Monday and Wednesday. Walker argues she inadvertently ingested a cocaine metabolite by drinking coca tea in Lima.

She had a hearing Dec. 4, 2019, with the Panam Sports disciplinary commission, which disqualified her scores in the individual and team events in Lima.

WATCH | Tea to blame for Canadian show jumper's positive drug test?

Tea to blame for Canadian show jumper's positive drug test?

2 years ago
2:13
Canadian show jumper Nicole Walker has tested positive for a banned substance linked to cocaine. The test was conducted during the Pan American Games in Peru this year and some think a local tea could be to blame. 2:13

Walker was stripped of fourth place in the individual event. Erasing her scores in the team event dropped Canada from fourth to seventh.

Canada had to finish in the top four to be among the 20 countries competing for Olympic team gold in Tokyo. The COVID-19 pandemic postponed Tokyo's Summer Games from 2020 to 2021.

The Pan Am Games were Canada's last chance to qualify for Tokyo. Argentina moved up from fifth to claim the last Olympic berth.

Walker's lawyer Tim Danson did not respond to an email from The Canadian Press.

Walker said last year in a statement she has never used illicit drugs.

"The team deserves to go to the Olympics," Walker said then.

Walker is the 27-year-old daughter of Belinda Stronach, who is president and chairman of The Stronach Group and a former member of Parliament from 2004 to 2008.

Walker tested positive for benzoylecgonine in a sample taken the day of the team final Aug. 7 in Lima.

The coca plant contains alkaloids that can be chemically extracted to concoct cocaine.

While coca and coca leaves are illegal in Canada under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, coca tea is legal and consumed in several South American countries.

Coca tea is considered an altitude sickness remedy in Peru.

If Walker is unsuccessful in her appeal to CAS, Canada can send only one rider to Tokyo to compete in the individual event.

The Canadian team of Yann Candele, Tiffany Foster, Eric Lamaze and Amy Millar lost a jump-off for the bronze medal at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

Lamaze, Ian Millar, Jill Henselwood and Mac Cone won a silver medal in 2008 in Beijing.

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Member

Join the conversation  Create account

Already have an account?

now