Sioux City native Shelby Houlihan yesterday received some bad news. It looks like she now has very little chance of competing at the U.S. Olympic trials today. Her chances diminished sharply late yesterday when the country's Olympic committee said it would follow all antidoping rules, and USA Track and Field received long-awaited official notice of her suspension.
Earlier this week, the Swiss-based Court of Arbitration for Sport upheld Houlihan's four-year ban for testing positive for trace amounts of a performance-enhancing drug. She blamed her positive test on a pork burrito she ate 10 hours before a test in December. Contaminated meats have led to positive tests in other cases, many of which have been dismissed.At first, the USATF said would not bar the American record-holder at 1,500 and 5,000 meters from running in today's preliminary heats until she had exhausted every appeal. However, later on, yesterday, the USATF was said it would take Houlihan off the start lists since it had received official word from the Athletics Integrity Unit. The unit conducted the test that led to the suspension, that Houlihan had been banned for four years.