It’s been a long road for Josh “The Warmaster” Barnett but it would appear his ordeal is now over.
More than a year after being flagged by USADA for a potential doping violation stemming from a December 2016, out of competition test, Barnett has finally been cleared of any intentional wrong doing.
Barnett had his arbitration hearing earlier this week and the outcome was an unexpected one. The Warmaster received a public reprimand but no additional suspension and is free to return to action immediately. The surprising move by the arbitrator is the first time that a fighter has tested positive for a performance enhancing substance and received no suspension of any kind as a result.
When announcing the outcome, arbitrator Richard H McLaren said he did not believe Barnett intentionally cheated.
“On the evidence before me, the Applicant is not a drug cheat,” wrote McLaren. “He unknowingly ingested a Contaminated Product. In doing so, he did commit an ADPV because he had a Prohibited Substance in his Sample but he did not actively engage in attempting, in any way, to engage in the use of a Prohibited Substance.”
Barnett and his team successfully demonstrated that the failed drug test was the result of a supplement the fighter was using which was contaminated with osterine.
“Given the source was established to be a contaminated supplement, along with the athlete’s care and diligence concerning the nutritional products consumed, the arbitrator determined that a public reprimand was appropriate.” USADA confirmed in their announcement.
Following the result being confirmed, 40-year-old Barnett announced on twitter that he was looking forward to getting back to work in the near future.
I proved my innocence as I stated from the beginning and now I can look towards getting back in the ring in the neat future.
The time I lost though can never be regained. It should not havr had to come to all of this.
Ever onwards… https://t.co/HfeUrteKjA
— Josh Barnett (@JoshLBarnett) March 24, 2018