Olympic and world 400m champion LaShawn Merritt has accepted a provisional suspension after testing positive for a banned drug, his lawyer reportedly said.

According to Thursday’s release from lawyer Howard Jacobs, the American used an over-the-counter male enhancement product that contained substances that caused him to fail three successive tests between October and January.

Merritt, who defeated fellow countryman Jeremy Wariner on his way to winning the world title last summer, says he hopes his family, friends and sponsors will forgive him for making “a foolish, immature and egotistical mistake.”

He said: “As an athlete, and strong advocate of fair competition; I have worked very hard to push myself to the outer limits of my physical abilities without any performance enhancement drugs. I’ve always prided myself on doing what’s right, and will continue to do so.

“To know that I’ve tested positive as a result of product that I used for personal reasons is extremely difficult to wrap my hands around. I hope my sponsors, family, friends and the sport itself will forgive me for making such a foolish, immature and egotistical mistake. Any penalty that I may receive for my action will not overshadow the embarrassment and humiliation that I feel inside.

“I am deeply sorry and hope that other athletes who take these types of over the counter products will be even more cautious and read the fine print, because if it can happen to me, it could happen to you.”

The 400-meter runner will not compete until the case has been decided.

USA Track & Field CEO Doug Logan says he is “disgusted by this entire episode,” thinks Merritt “put his entire career under a cloud” and his explanation “brings shame to himself and his teammates.”

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  1. The product contained 2 banned steroids/hormones. How much enhancement could he need to risk his career over it? Why did it take the drug officials 5 months to notify him of his positive results? The entire circumstance is just weird.

  2. I don’t trust the USADA they are covering up for these drug user including Tyson and CarJeta, why take so long to come out with this news

  3. Stacy I agree I found that a little disturbing as well. Why wait util 5months to blow this. As soon as our Jamaican athletes last year found out about their testing it was all over the news. Merritt hope your time’s not catching up on you. Why is that US athletes drug results take so long to surface when everybod else from other nations test is publicized so fast? MMMMMMMMHHHHHHH let me think about this for a while.

  4. but see here along with all the comments which i totally agree with boy im sooo disappointed if him did well know what he was doing but it makes you wonder why such a young man an athlete to boot would require male enhancement hmmm playing the devil’s advocate he need some jamaican male friend who can introduce him to irish moss or some roots and stout if something really go so

  5. i have been reading about male enhancement products most of them boost testosterone levels., which helps to produce more red blood cells and aids athletes in building muscle etc. etc. in older men testosterone levels drop so they need it for a variety of health related reasons. certainly a young man such as merritt does not need that stuff for health or for that reason male enhancement. the only conclusion is the obvious one , he was using it to enhance performance on the track not in the bed. testosterone is a steroid incidentally.

  6. @Walter. Nah , I disagree with the last part of your comment. I personally believe that it was a youthful indescretion on Meritt path. We must not assume quickly that every doping incident is somehow athletes trying to get an advantage.People can honestly make mistake, in this situation I only blame Meriit for not being more cautious and careful….and for this he is going to pay a serious price. But eh welcome to the world of track and field…where the damage is already done and their is no purpose in claiming innocence.

  7. Walter, i agree with you 100%….LaShawn Merritt know exactly what he,s doing, this man is an experience athlete, this man know whats going on with the IAAF and how many of these substances that they put into making these pills are being BANNED….an experience athlete like LaShawn shouldn,t just get up and popped a pill, just like that….BS…what you are trying to tell me, that he,s gonna risk it all {His Career} just because he want to conquer a piece of ass?….well in that case he deserve a more stiffer punishment…..so which ever way you{ LaShawn Merritt} sees fit to describe your BS, by calling it foolish, immature and egotistical…it all adds up to the same thing, and the whole world is smelling it right now….i hate to say it….but i told you so from last year….The IAAF is setting a trap for all cheaters….and you are gonna get caught….don,t worry LaShawn, in a couple of months you will have lots of company.

  8. Bayreuth…let me ask you this…If you were an International athlete…Olympic Champion, World Champion the works….would you just popped a pill without thinking that maybe this pill, this laboratory developed pill, may contained some substance that is being BANNED by the IAAF? for if that doesn,t cross your mind.. with so much at stake….your whole career….then something is seriously wrong with you…and, if it does cross your mind and you still went ahead and popped that pill….then, it,s not a foolish, Immature and Egotistical mistake….it,s just straight up CHEATING.

  9. @ Tony roots. Why would Meriit knowingly and deliberately went and buy off- the shelf PED knowing that he wil be tested postive? If you are to trying to beat the system you would go high-tech and get the designer juice…not that cheap ass over the counter shit. That is why I am saying he messsed up big time and should have known better. But I am not naive and gullible to beleive he was trying to get an advantage on some cheap shit…drugs. Almost all drugs nowadays can be technically classified as PED in some form or another. Some people claim that weed is a PED also. I agree with you that Meriit should have known better to risk all is carreer on some ass. But then again life is full of people my friend who risk the same for some ass eg.Bill Clinton, Tiger woods, Kobe, Governor Spitzer, ………etc etc.

  10. Being a professional track athlete when it comes to ingesting any nutritional products is synonimous to any practicing Jew and their Kosher food and any practicing Muslim and their Halal food. Meaning very picking and educated on what they are taking as food. On second point young strong althlete the dream of many women around the world needs booster for sex, I find that a bit far stretched. Guys should just come clean if they are cheating, stop this charade and be true. If i was a track athlete i wouldnt even drink water if i dont know where its coming from and from whom. Now take the medals away and ban him for life, these guys take these chances because they know they can come back in 2 years.

  11. Bayreuth and Tony, both of you have such good points I don’t even know what to think any more. I am on the fence. Merritt said that when he bought the pills, he never read the fine print (ingredients). It’s so hard for me to think a gold medal athlete could be that stupid. What if it was something that wasnt banned but that could produce undesirable side effects? That is stupidity on another level.

    I don’t think the smart thing to do nowadays is to get highclass PEDs. Those cost money and they leave too many paper trails, plus lab technicians and researchers who can end up subpeonaed. Think Balco. That’s really not a convincing argument for me. What does sway me is as bayreuth says, some of the most powerful men in the world have been brought down because they put their genitals above their careers and families. So while I have to wonder if a professional athlete can be that stupid, greater men than him have fallen for the same reason.

  12. boy abba you have a point you know look at how careful bolt is about what he puts in his mouth almost to a point of paranoia but it is a necessary precaution on a serious note although i made light of the situation it look very peculiar

  13. and yes stacy im on the fence too merritt is one of my favourite quartermilers he doesnt have that cocky air about him why would he risk so much but you see persons were so quick to judge our athletes when they unknowingly took supplements what about that now although it its a different angle its the same concept now what do they have to say about this thing with merritt isnt is the same thing playing all over to be honest il take the same stance as stacy

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