UFC fighter Kelvin Gastelum has accepted a nine-month suspension after a drug test from his last fight at UFC 244 in November of last year.
Gastelum was originally suspended nine months for testing positive for THC (the psychoactive element in marijuana), but the duration of the suspension was reduced by five months after Gastelum completed a drug treatment program. With the suspension beginning retroactively on November 3, 2019, Gastelum is already cleared to fight again.
This is Gastelum’s second time being suspended on a marijuana-based violation. He also tested positive for it in 2017 and also received a reduced suspension after completing a drug treatment program.
USADA’s statement on the situation is as follows:
“Gastelum, 28, tested positive for 11-nor-9-carboxy-tetrahydrocannabinol (Carboxy-THC) over the Decision Limit of 180 ng/mL, a urinary metabolite of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive constituent of cannabis, marijuana, and/or hashish as the result of a sample collected in-competition at UFC 244 New York, New York on November 3, 2019,” USADA officials said in a statement. “Cannabis, marijuana, and hashish are Specified Substances in the class of Cannabinoids and prohibited in-competition under the UFC Prohibited List.
“Under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, Cannabinoids are considered Substances of Abuse. If an athlete can establish that the Substance of Abuse was not used to enhance his or her performance in a bout, the athlete is eligible for a reduction to his or her period of ineligibility upon the full and satisfactory completion of an approved rehabilitation program. Gastelum also tested positive for Carboxy-THC in 2017 and accepted the resulting sanction.“