Skip to content

Chinese swimmer, 17, suspended for doping

Jan 29, 2013, 11:09 AM EST

Li Zhesi Getty Images

Last summer, Li Zhesi’s hopes of competing at the Olympics were taken away when she was busted for taking EPO, a banned substance. EPO, you may remember, is what Lance Armstrong took during his cycling career.

It’s a blood-boosting drug that we normally see endurance athletes take.

On Tuesday, it was announced that swimming’s international governing body FINA has suspended Li for two years because of the offense. Li was part of China’s winning 4x100m freestyle relay team at the 2009 World Championships that broke the world record. The mark stood for three years before the United States reset the record in London.

Li (at the far right in the accompanying photo) was just 14 years old at the 2009 Worlds; she’s 17 now.