Olympic Gold Medalist Conor Dwyer Retires from Swimming After Doping Ban

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorOctober 12, 2019

United States' Conor Dwyer shows off his bronze medal during the medal ceremony for the men's 200-meter freestyle final during the swimming competitions at the 2016 Summer Olympics, Monday, Aug. 8, 2016, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)
Michael Sohn/Associated Press

Olympic gold medalist Conor Dwyer revealed in an Instagram post Friday he is retiring from professional swimming.

"Today i’m announcing my retirement from professional swimming," Dwyer wrote.

"It has been an incredible ride and I have accomplished more than my wildest dreams. It was an honor to represent my country alongside my teammates."

Dwyer then thanked his coaches, parents, siblings, cousins, friends and teammates before closing.

"I have always felt that swimming chose me- it has and will always have a very special place in my heart," Dwyer said. "This is an unfortunate end to an incredible chapter of my life. I believe that things happen for a reason, and I can’t wait to share with you all the next chapter of my life."

Dwyer's retirement comes after an American Arbitration Association panel suspended him 20 months retroactive to Dec. 21, 2018.

The United States Anti-Doping Agency wrote that Dwyer tested "positive for an anabolic agent as the result of out-of-competition urine samples collected on November 15, November 27, and December 20, 2018."

Per USADA, the AAA discovered the two-time Olympic gold medalist "had testosterone pellets inserted in his body in violation of the rules."

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Jared Anderson of SwimSwam reported Dwyer is ineligible to participate in the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo.

As for Dwyer's defense, Anderson cited the AAA case document and wrote the following:

"Dwyer says he had BioTE pellets surgically implanted in his body in a procedure on October 12, 2018. Dwyer says he did not know the procedure was against anti-doping rules, nor that the pellets were testosterone. He says he didn’t undergo the procedure out of concern for his swimming performances, but his 'overall mental health and well-being,' citing issues such as 'brain fog, low mental and physical energy, difficulty sleeping, depression and anxiety' for many months leading up to the 2018 procedure."

Per Anderson, Dwyer sought a suspension reduction to 16 months, which would have enabled him to participate in the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials. USADA wanted a four-year ban.

Dwyer won gold during the 2012 and 2016 Summer Olympics for Team USA in the 4x200-meter freestyle. Michael Phelps, Ryan Lochte and Ricky Berens rounded out the 2012 team that won the final, and the 2016 team was the same aside from Townley Haas replacing Berens.

The 30-year-old has also won three FINA World Aquatics Championship gold medals and two FINA World Swimming Championship gold medals.

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