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Singh Admits to Using Banned Spray
Vijay Singh has admitted that he has used deer antler spray, a substance that's also been linked this week to Baltimore Ravens' linebacker Ray Lewis, who's playing in the upcoming Super Bowl. The spray is banned in all major sports leagues, including the PGA Tour.
Singh, who turns 50 next month, released a statement on Wednesday in which he admitted using the substance and his ignorance that the material is impermissible.
"While I have used deer antler spray, at no time was I aware that it may contain a substance that is banned under the PGA Tour Anti-Doping Policy," he said in the statement.
"In fact, when I first received the product, I reviewed the list of ingredients and did not see any prohibited substances. I am absolutely shocked that deer antler spray may contain a banned substance and am angry that I have put myself in this position. I have been in contact with the PGA Tour and am cooperating fully with their review of this matter. I will not be commenting further at this time."
The story was broken by Sports Illustrated writer David Epstein (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/nfl/news/20130129/the-strange-lab-that-lured-numerous-athletes/?sct=hp_t11_a2) and is to appear in the February 4th issue of the magazine.
The product has been developed by a company named Sports with Alternatives to Steroids (S.W.A.T.S), which has been very clear that the IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor) is a banned substance.
"I'm looking forward to some change in my body," Singh said, according to the Sports Illustrated article. Singh said he began using the spray last November. The treatment, which he administered every couple of hours while sleeping, also involves the use of chips, a beam ray and powder additive. "It's really hard to feel the difference if you're only doing it for a couple of months."
It's unknown at this time whether Singh, a former No. 1-ranked player who was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2006, will face a suspension or penalty from the PGA Tour.
Ty Votaw, the Tour's vice president of communications and international affairs, said the organization became aware of the report Tuesday and was continuing its investigation.
Singh, who has racked up 34 career victories on the PGA Tour - including three major titles, is slated to play in this week's Waste Management Phoenix Open. The $6.2 million Tour event starts Thursday at TPC Scottsdale in Arizona.