Reputedly tomorrow is the day that WADA and the FIM will test and or announce the results of MotoGP rider Andrea Iannone “B” sample from his Sepang urine test.
Iannone failed the first test when it showed signs that he had taken a banned steroid. The “B” sample was taken, presumably, from the same pen-is and urine stream as the first, so odds are against Iannone’s second test coming clean. Anything is possible but the penalty if he fails this second test will be career-ending in terms of a professional racing career.
It’s no secret that Iannone is a devout follower of social media and places a great deal of importance on his appearance. Infamously he showed up for a pre-season test last year basically unable to ride because he had underwent plastic surgery on his jawline, an incident which certainly speaks to where racing is in terms of how he feels his racing/appearance balance is tipped.
With the example of Supercross rider James Stewart and Ant West’s failed tests well known, it’s quite probable that WADA and the FIM are not going to listen to any appeal based on “I didn’t know” or “My Dr gave it to me”.
When Nori Haga failed a drug test in 2000, his rival for the WSBK title, American Colin Edwards II explained to the press that as an athlete he felt it was his job to know and monitor every substance that he ingested. Edwards drank no energy drinks and READ THE LABELS when he took over the counter medicines. Also, one former MotoGP champion had an employee travel with him and monitor any food or drink he ingested, be it in an airport lounge or any place outside of his team’s hospitality operation. The repercussions of a failed drug test are that high.
Hit King Kenny Roberts on the right/wrong day and he might tell you how he lost a world championship because he felt someone had tampered with his food during the racing season. He strongly suspects a meal he ingested was laced with a substance that left him bed-ridden and unable to stand, much less race a motorcycle.
Asking “Why” when the rider is Iannone is a dicey proposition at best. There’s more whys than answers. Why would a rider schedule a face lift before a scheduled MotoGP pre-season test? Why would a rider take a steroid generally used to build muscle when the norm for MotoGP riders is to train for a lean body?
Because his appearance means more to him than his racing career?
Because he is struggling with the recovery period between races or work outs?
Does Iannone even truly care? Every man needs to be true to their own nature and if Iannone deems his appearance more important than racing, and if he can make $5000 just for wearing a sponsored pair of trousers on Instagram, so be it.
Tomorrow or thereabouts the results of the second test will be made public.