Zirbel’s A sample positive for exogenous DHEA

Posted on 27. Dec, 2009 by in news

After being announced on the team as early as September, one name was missing from the Team Garmin-Transitions 2010 roster announced a few days ago – and that was Tom Zirbel.

Winning the silver at US Pro TT, Tom Zirbel A sample would later test positive

Winning the silver at US Pro TT, Tom Zirbel A sample would later test positive

Per Zirbel’s statement below, his A sample from the USA Professional TT Championships tested positive for exogenous DHEA.  Zirbel then riding for the BISSELL team,  finished second to claim the silver medal at the US Pro on August 29, 2009.  He went on to represent the US at the World Championships where he set the fourth fastest time in the ITT.

While he awaits the results of the B sample, Zirbel released the following statement:

“I want to inform the cycling community that an ‘A’ sample of mine from a urine test conducted by USADA on Aug. 29, 2009 after the US Pro TT has tested positive for exogenous DHEA. I have not yet received notification from USADA on the findings of the ‘B’ sample, but I expect to receive word any day now. The US Pro TT was a major objective of mine this season, but I would never compromise my integrity for any bike race. At this point, I don’t know how this happened but regardless of the outcome of my ‘B’ sample I intend to find out with the help of a few accomplished scientists and doctors who have selflessly helped me since I first was notified of the ‘A’ findings. With that in mind, I refuse to speculate about how this happened until we have solid scientific evidence. I hate that this situation could and will probably bring more negative attention to our sport, but I am confident that we will find answers and I will be cleared of any wrongdoing. In the meantime, I ask for your understanding and respect while I fight for my career and reputation during this personal matter. ”

DHEA or Dehydroepiandrosterone is an endogenous steroid. Read more on wikipedia

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8 Responses to “Zirbel’s A sample positive for exogenous DHEA”

  1. Josh

    27. Dec, 2009

    Well, that makes sense as to why he was left off the roster. Damn.

  2. The Truth Hurts

    27. Dec, 2009

    I hope we don’t hear “Oh, it couldn’t possibly be true. Tom’s such a nice guy.”

    Well, nice guys dope.

    Just ask Tyler Hamilton, David Miller, Floyd Landis, Jonathan Vaughters, Frankie Andreu, etc.

  3. Name

    28. Dec, 2009

    Zirbelicious got caught with his hand in the cookie jar. Even more interesting since he has a chemistry background, but never heard of DHEA?

    I agree don’t let the good guy personas fool you.

  4. lyne

    28. Dec, 2009

    Well maybe it makes me naive but I do believe that Tom did not intentionally take DHEA. Of course wrestled with that given the history of that sport but I have to go with my belief – publicly.

  5. Name

    28. Dec, 2009

    Well, whether intentional or not, everyone in the sport has been well aware of the circumstances for unintentional ingestion for quite some time. Zajicek was a warning to everyone after his China positive. Since then, the suspensions have been more punitive. USA Cycling will have no choice but to give him 2 years from the date of the positive if his B sample contains DHEA also.
    Of course the line between testing positive and racing clean is extremely fine. Many things do help us perform better but are part of our daily lives such as caffeine. However, even if Tom is by definition racing clean and took a supplement that contained DHEA, he acted foolishly. Any limited gain given by general over the counter supplements is not worth the hassle given the potential consequences of contamination. His career is likely over because he may have bought protein powder rather than eating an egg. We can all race without these pills and powders. Their benefits aren’t enough to put on a banned list, so save your money and buy a delicious steak instead (assuming it isn’t full of cow steroids:)

  6. thek2

    02. Jan, 2010

    I agree with Lyne.

  7. MavicMotoGuy

    03. Jan, 2010

    I’m with you Lynn.
    I think this is an inadvertent positive. Like Scott Moniger, Phil Z, Amber Neben etc.
    Tyler knew it was banned, saw it on an ingredient list, and took it anyway ?!
    It is reputedly of very little doping value.
    He’ll still get screwed.

  8. HZee

    26. Feb, 2010

    I think that he would not be dumb enough to take steroids or anything else knowingly, since he is most likely tested on a regular basis, but I do know it’s not random. So he most definitely knew he was going to be tested. I don’t think he would have taken steroids knowing this.
    He was at the peak of his health and the height of his career at the moment, I don’t think he would have risked all he had by taking anything when he was known to do just as well when he tested negative.
    I have no idea what it is that made him test positive, but I am pretty sure he wouldn’t have done whatever it was on purpose.