Controversial former BALCO President Victor Conte has explained what kind of substance got found in the Conor Benn drug test sample.
As widely reported during fight week for his catchweight clash with Chris Eubank Jr., Benn got flagged for clomifene, also known as Clomid and clomiphene.
Conte, who served time in prison in 2005 after pleading guilty to conspiracy to distribute steroids and money laundering, aired his views on the matter.
Now running the Scientific Nutrition for Advanced Conditioning [SNAC Nutrition] outfit that works with undisputed champion Devin Haney, Conte is a regular commenter on all drug test matters.
Where’s Conor Benn’s B sample?
The Benn saga, which continues to run due to the lack of movement over a B sample and explanation, is no different.
Conte made startling claims regarding the adverse finding in his discussion on social media.
He said: “Clomiphene is a fertility drug that comes as pills. There have been lots of positive tests for this drug.
“It increases testosterone by up to fifty percent. I hope we don’t have another Oscar Valdez-type black eye for boxing with Conor Benn, and the fight goes on based on money and politics.”
The fight didn’t happen, as we all know. It was called off with just two days until the Saturday, October 8 bout after Eubank had boiled down to 157 pounds from middleweight.
The main card for the O2 Arena event still has to be rescheduled, with many fighters on the bill having to find new dates.
Gemma Ruegg fought in last weekend’s all-women event, topped by Claressa Shields vs Savannah Marshall.
Regarding the Valdez incident Conte mentioned, Valdez tested positive for the banned substance phentermine weeks before a fight.
The Pascua Yaqui Tribal Gaming Commission and the WBC have ruled that the fight could happen despite the flagging.
Pressure over the issue saw Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn give up the fight to challenge the British Boxing Board of Control legally.
Hearn is readying to fight Benn’s corner as they believe the welterweight will be proven innocent.
Damning report on clomifene being a steroid masker
However, Conte gave a damning report on the findings, even if they are just a “trace amount” – as stated.
“Wake up, boxing! Remember when Manny Ramirez with the Dodgers [baseball] tested positive for clomiphene? He also tested positive for testosterone.
“Clomid is not an obscure drug. Every bodybuilder that does steroids uses it for post-cycle therapy.
“It’s a prohibited substance by all testing entities.”
He continued: “In my opinion, the goalposts were moved in the Valdez case for financial gain.
“Why do boxers and promoters expect not to have penalties when drug abuse occurs? Clean boxing is important.
“It’s also important to understand that WADA [World Anti-Doping Agency] prohibited substances list has three categories.
“Prohibited in competition. Prohibited out of competition and prohibited at all times. Clomiphene use is not permitted at all times.
“If VADA [Voluntary Anti-Doping Agency] found a positive test, there should be penalties for Benn.
Conte concluded: “Eddie Hearn says “trace” amounts of clomiphene were found in Conor Benn’s urine.
“Two types of tests. Quantitative & Qualitative. One has an established threshold. A qualitative test like clomiphene does not.
“You are either pregnant or not. You can’t be trace-pregnant.”
It must be said that there’s no evidence that Conor Benn has ever used steroids in his career. He’s always professed to be a clean athlete.
The whirlwind surrounding Benn has also begun to die down a little. However, the fans and media want answers sooner rather than later.
The more time passes, the worse it looks for Benn and Hearn. They’ve had ample time to detail their side of the story.
A statement is expected this week as Benn aims to rebuild his reputation and move forward.
According to talkSPORT, the Eubank is not dead in the water either. However, it may not take place in the United Kingdom.
Benn’s father, Nigel Benn – who flew into London from Australia to help train his son, said: “I saw a picture of Chris Eubank Jr [making weight for the Conor Benn fight]. His body is emaciated.
“I sent Chris Eubank Sr. a text saying, ‘Sorry, I didn’t realize.’
“I said to Conor, ‘If you fight him, he’s not fighting at 157lbs. But I want you to fight him at 160lbs.”
Eubank Jr. may want to focus on a world title shot rather than what will now be a highly controversial fight with Benn.
The views expressed in this article are the opinions of Phil Jay.