Professional Golfer Vijay Singh Absolved of Any Penalty for Using Deer Antler Spray by the PGA
PGA Tour Champion and World Golf Hall of Famer Vijay Singh took deer antler spray hoping it would change his body. However, it instead changed his golfing career, if only for a little while, after the World Anti-Doping Agency began looking into his usage of the banned substance. After testing the product Singh was taking, the WADA said it doesn’t consider deer-antler spray a prohibited substance…unless there is a positive test result. Singh has been cleared of any wrongdoing with the WADA and the PGA Tour and has been allowed to continue moving forward in his career with no fines, sanctions or punishment.
The PGA Tour lists deer-antler spray on its list of banned substances because it contains IGF-1, the growth factor that is considered a banned substance. In August 2011, the Tour warned players that they were not allowed to use deer-antler spray. On January 28 of 2013, Vijay Singh did an interview for Sports Illustrated where he confirmed that he takes a deer-antler spray supplement. The 50-year-old player indicated he wasn’t aware that the product contained any banned substances and was hoping it would help bring about changes to his body.
After Singh’s SI interview, the PGA Tour attempted to sanction Singh for his use of the substance, since according to Tour rules an admission to using a substance on the prohibited list is the same as a positive test. However, within a week Singh had appealed the sanctions and the WADA tested the product Singh had used, with the determination that deer-antler spray had been removed from the banned list. Because the product was no longer considered banned, the case against Singh was dropped and neither WADA nor the PGA Tour were taking any further actions against Singh at this time.
Some wonder if Vijay Singh simply got away with using a banned substance, but there are many others who have voiced their opinion that since he freely talked about his use of deer-antler spray, and since the WADA no longer considers the spray to be a banned substance as long as there is no positive test from the use of it, the matter is all but over. Currently, there is no blood testing being done by the PGA Tour for banned substances, instead the Tour uses random urine testing.