MAY 10, 2019 – Earlier today we heard of USADA’s (American Anti-Doping Agency) ruling over the professional jiu-jitsu athlete Tayane Porfirio‘s positive doping test. The test, which took place after the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation (IBJJF) World Jiu-Jitsu Championships on June 3 (2018), spotted 2 instances of banned substances, namely 19‐norandrosterone (19‐NA) and 19-noretiocholanolone, to which Porfirio was given the maximum penalty of 4 years, having her titles removed – more info on this at USADA’s website, here.
Although Tayane accepted the ruling, she has claimed her innocence from the start and will be challenging the result. According to Miss Porfirio in an interview given to BJJ Heroes recently, the main reason for her recent acceptance came down to a lack of funds for fighting the case as she was refused a re-test to the sample. To challenge the test itself, at this point, Porfirio would have to pay for her own independent test, which would require an excess of $25,000, funds she could not afford.
Porfirio has stated will be challenging the sample, much as Augusto Mendes (Tanquinho) did last year during his positive PEDs test when competing for the UFC, with his exoneration taking place in April 2019. On her most recent statement regarding the issue, Tayane wrote:
“Why I accepted USADA’s punishment:
After almost one year of fighting, a very dark year, a disappointing and frustrating year, thinking of how I would expose my problem, how people would react, how they would judge me, today I had the strength to put everything down in writing.
Last year, USADA notified me for the use of a substance I did not know the existence of, nandrolone, which was found on a sample of mine taken during the 2018 World Championship of IBJJF.
• When I was notified, I was not sure what to do. I started listing everything that I had taken during my spine injury treatment, a process that took place in 2017 – and fully disclosed by the specialized media. I thought nandrolone could have been an ingredient on my medication. It was then that I discovered that it was an anabolic steroid. It is not testosterone itself, but a derivative.
• None of the medicines or drugs prescribed by the doctor carried the substance ‘nandrolone’. I and my team pondered on a possible tampered sample at the pharmacy, from one of my prescribed drugs but USADA did not accept this as a viable explanation.
• Since 2016 I have been banned from a federation [E.N.: UAEJJF] for being over 90 kilograms. I am, invariably, the largest and heaviest athlete on every event I compete in, and if I never took anything to appease the bullying people have pushed on me throughout my career, nor have I done it to compete for the big prize money offered by the aforementioned federation, why would I start taking banned substances now? I had a year  where I competed injured and still won everything there was to win, why take it now?”
Taken from Tayane’s Instagram account @tayaneporfiriobjj
During her recent interview to BJJ Heroes Tayane confessed that as she fully believed her innocence and was unable to combat the drug testing agency due to her low finances, she almost quit jiu-jitsu and was close to depression. “I spent months without training,” said Tayane, “I gained a lot of weight and was 144 kg at one point [318lbs], just stayed home feeling sorry for myself and thinking about what others would say of me when they found out. I never expected something like this could happen”. Luckily Tayane managed to overcome this frame of mind and is back to training and teaching, doing so from the Gracie Barra Academy in Fulham, London, England. A gym and country she adopted recently. She also found legal help, something she was only able to afford a few months into the conversations with USADA.