"Three athletes - Rebekah Keat from Australia, Amber Neben from the United States, and Mike Vine from Canada - have filed suit against Hammer Nutrition, Ltd. in the Orange County Superior Court, California, alleging that their positive drug tests were caused by the use of Hammer Nutrition Endurolyte supplements that were contaminated with the steroid precursor norandrostenedione."
This comes as a shock to the industry because Hammer sponsors age-groupers and elite athletes and to have just these elite athletes test positive might be a sign that perhaps they're the only ones actually getting tested and that there very well may be age-groupers with these illegal substances in their blood that they don't know about. What do you think about this?
Toby, we have to ask are these the only athletes to supplement with Hammer to be tested. Also has hammer released a statement of any sort as to where they stand. These individuals are suspposed to be in the top of their seperate classes. It does make you wonder on are they they taking performance enhancing drug, did they not do some research as to what they are supplementing with ( I believe one is sponsored by them) Is the company somehow responsible. This is tough because my bike shop along with a lot of other shops carry Hammer. I have been tempted to try them, but now I will research and wait. As with trying a new item I will recommend research.
Hammer Nutrition has released a statement and it is on their website. If the supplement they were taking were cross-contaminated you would think that with as many world class athletes that use Hammer products more would have tested positive. I would find it highly unlikely that an electrolyte supplement form this company would be cross contaminated with a substance they don't even offer. I know that the manufacturing is probably outscourced but I guarantee you that with the atmosphere surrounding doping and endurance athletics these products are heavily tested before they are distributed.
These positive test were in 2002-2004, 4-6 years ago did they have left over capsules from that long ago to test? These kind of stories and the spread of them will lead to the end of good companies like Hammer Nutrition providing athletes a good and safe product. All it takes is one trial with a stupid and uninformed jury to award some ridiculous settlement to the plaintiffs and since the lawsuit was filed here in California that is highly probable. Just look at what has happened with the medical drug field, you cant watch TV for an hour without seeing an add from an unscrupulous law firm drumming up business fishing for people to file or join lawsuits against a company not to protect the client but to pad their bank account. Want to know why medical cost are so high?
I went Hammer's web site and read their statement. I will have to agree even though it is unfortante they will lose some revenue. And if these individuals were tested at least 8 years ago then why are they suing now? Your part about the un-educated jury is dead on. I myself have been looking for endurance supplements and after researching their product I think I will have to try them. Regardless of what's going on. With the strict guidelines in place for endurance athletes i for one as a company would have my products tested. I agree with with you.
You guys should check out this post from Active Expert, Gale Bernhardt. She wrote about supplement contamination levels. They're MUCH higher than you think:
Toby, I read Gale's post and went to the supplement link. While I was saturated by some of the big words I recognized a few. With the understanding they did not list manufacturer's name It makes a person wonder if the recovery drinks, muscle building pills, powders and the other items are contaminated? Even though I research a product I do not know everything about the ingredients. What was shocking is that traces of cocaine was also found. Maybe the FDA does need to get involved. We would like to think what we take to better ourselves is safe, as we see with the water supply nothing is really that safe anymore. What do I think about the lawsuit? I believe there is some grounds and it needs to stay with the facts. However instead of giving out millons of impose stricter regulations on all companies. It still has to be proven did these athletes dope. Or is the company responsible.
If you do a Google search on the three athletes there are numerous references to the suit here is a telling quote from the owner of Hammer Nutrition pertaining to Amber Neben's positive test:
In addressing Neben's case, Frank said, "She also claims contamination, but they had 14 products tested, and all of them tested negative. That was one of the most tested teams in the U.S. We were supplying them through Mike Engelman's (U.S. Women's Cycling Development Program director and founder) women's development team, which was also the T-Mobile team, so not T-Mobile per se. But the funny thing is, she tested positive at a stage race in Quebec. All her teammates were tested and using the same product out of the same containers, and none of them tested positive."
Why did the rest of the team not test positive if they were getting the supplements from the same container?
I listened to it but i still have a problem with only one member of team testing positive and blaming a suplement that the rest of the team also used from the same container. I also go back to the point that these are not the only athletes who use this product and I am sure others were tested and would have had positive test results.
I know of Woward Jacobs work as he was on Floyf Landis' defense team a case a personel friend did a good percentage of the background work for the Landis defense. On this one though I think he is wrong. Too many things dont add up.
It seems as though you might have an axe to grind with Hammer. i use one of their products Hammer Gel but I fear the los fo good products to athletes with cases like this getting to much airplay.
Toby, I listened to the interview. Have you heard any more news from this? It will be interesting to follow.
Hey Vicky, I've been looking for news, let me know if you find anything and I'll def post the next time I find something. I've been a long-time fan of Hammer so this def disappoints me but when I read this post from Gale Bernhardt, I now understand that this is a pervasive issue: http://community.active.com/blogs/GaleBernhardt/2008/04/08/contaminated-supplements
Yes, Toby. It is pervasive. Trust is a major issue for athletes competing for
a place in the Olympics and other high profile athletic competitions.
Taking nutritional supplements to help maintain health shouldn't place
an athlete at risk for testing positive for a banned substance. Broadly
publicized allegations of contaminants in supplements lead many top
athletes to wonder if taking supplements will jeopardize their future
ability to qualify for competition. In fact, national Olympic
committees have written to their athletes warning them of the potential
danger of contaminants, encouraging them not to consume any nutritional
So, what can be done other than drinking water and Gatorade? The answer is in the testing. Hammer should spend the money to have their products tested by a well respected independent lab. One of the most respected labs for this is the[ NSF|http://www.nsf.org/consumer/dietary_supplements/index.asp?program=DietarySup]. They test supplements to see if they really contain what is printed on the label. They also certify products to assure athletes that they do not contain any of the[ banned substances.|http://www.nsf.org/business/athletic_banned_substances/index.asp]This program is called Certtified For Sport
Here are some of the companies that have had some of their products tested and certified for sport:
The Womens Tennis Association searched for a supplement company that they could trust for their elite athletes. They chose Usana Health Sciences to be the official health supplement supplier to the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour.
Usana puts their money where their mouth is and offers elite athletes an iron clad guarantee to pay them up to one million dollars should they test positive for any banned substance. Click here to see other Olympic and Pro athletes that trust Usana.
It doesn't stop there. Usana products are also certified by independent labs like Consumer Lab, Natural Products Association (NPA), True-Label Program, USP Dietary Supplements Verification Program, NHPD (Canada's version of FDA), Therapeutic Goods Association (TGA - Australia's version of the FDA) and Independent ISO 17025 verification.
Usana was also rated very high by Nutrisearch Labs in their independent study found in the "[Comparative Guide To Nutritional Supplements|http://aiminghigher.blogspot.com/2007/12/comparative-guide-to-nutritional.html]."
Hammer should test their raw ingredients coming in and test each batch before they go out. They should have their products and facility tested by independent labs like the NSF and others to get their products certified as clean. This would put athletes at ease and they would get sued less often. It might raise the cost of the product but it might be well worth it in the long run.
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