Bridge champ busted for doping … say, what?

More evidence that the world is continuing to get wackier and wackier…

Flashback: Last year, during the the 2018 Olympics, a  husband & wife mixed doubles curling team from  Russia was stripped of their bronze medals when he tested positive for performance enhancing drugs.

You read that right: In the brute of all brute sports … CURLING!

For details. see our prior post Russia’s very bad week continues …


The draconian action by the Olympic Committee struck me as a bit puritanical overkill.

But, it may have been outdone by the the World Bridge Federation…


Norwegian-born Geir Helgemo is arguably the world’s best bridge player … having won numerous international tournaments.

But, when playing in World Bridge Series in Orlando last year, Mr. Heigermo ran afoul of the Bridge Federation’

He flunked a random drug test.


A couple of obvious questions come to mind…

First, presuming that the bridge players aren’t behaving in some outrageously wacky way, why are they being drug tested in the first place?

More to the point, what sort of drug might bridge players take to enhance their performance?

Maybe, some uber-caffeinated concoction to keep them awake at the table.

Or, maybe, some strong sedative to calm their nerves when the competition revs up.

Or, maybe, Prevagen – the memory-enhancer “originally discovered in jellyfish.”

Nope … none of those are in this mix.

Helgemo was nabbed for taking synthetic Testosterone and the fertility drug Clomifene.

Say, what?

The linkage between those drugs and performance at the bridge table seems quite tenuous to most observers (and players).

But, applying the Code of the World Anti-Doping Agency, the World Bridge Federation came down hard on Helgemo … suspending him for a year and stripping him of all titles and medals that he won in 2018.

Gotta protect the sanctity of the game, right?


Follow on Twitter @KenHoma

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