Pubdate: Thu, 17 May 2007
Source: Pique Newsmagazine (CN BC)
Copyright: 2007 Pique Publishing Inc.
Author: Andrew Mitchell
Bookmark: (Drug Testing)


Edmonton's Kimberly Joines has no intention of staying on the 
sidelines after she's done serving a nine-month suspension for 
testing positive for marijuana use.

The International Paralympic Committee, which oversees the alpine 
World Cup circuit for para-alpine athletes, issued the ban Thursday, 
May 10, following Joines's positive test at an IPC Alpine Skiing 
World Cup race in Aspen on Jan. 17. Nine months is the maximum 
penalty for a first-time offence, which Joines says stemmed from a 

Joines had applied to Health Canada to be allowed to use medicinal 
marijuana, which she says she used as a painkiller because it had 
fewer negative effects than prescription medications. At the time she 
applied to Health Canada she was told that the Canadian Centre for 
Ethics in Sports would allow the use of medicinal marijuana, not 
realizing that the IPC Anti-Doping Code, which uses the same list as 
the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) -- has no similar exemption.

Joines suffered a spine injury while snowboarding in 2000, and as a 
paraplegic lost no time getting back on the slopes despite some 
ongoing pain and discomfort. As a member of the national team, she 
has also suffered several crashes in training and competition, and 
was seriously injured when she fell off a chairlift in her sitski in 
2005, cracking ribs and damaging her shoulder. She also broke her 
femur in training that year.

While Joines plans to be back in October -- her nine-month suspension 
goes back to her initial positive test in January -- the incident 
caused some difficulty for the 26 year old. For one thing, she lost 
her Sport Canada funding of $1,500 a month that she relied on. She 
will need to re-qualify next year on the World Cup circuit to have 
that funding reinstated.

That should be relatively easy for Joines, who won the sit-ski 
category in her first race last season by about four seconds. 
However, she has not yet received word as to whether she will be 
allowed to train with the team while serving her suspension.

Alpine Canada has been relatively quiet about the incident. According 
to spokesperson Kyle Marr, no other athletes have tested positive or 
are being investigated for marijuana use. The official word on the 
incident is "no comment," although Marr referred reporters to the 
statements that Alpine Canada president Ken Read made to the national 
media last week -- namely that Joines was also sanctioned by Alpine 
Canada, but would be welcomed back to the team once her suspension was over.
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