Posts Tagged ‘driven sports’

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Driven Sports Craze has attracted a lot of attention since it was released, devastating users with both amazing results and, rarely, terrible side effects.  Rumors swirled about what the new ingredient “Dendrobex” was and wasn’t was, going to the point of speculating that it contained unlisted drugs.  Driven Sports has provided several drug tests in informal settings on bodybuilding.com’s forums to dispute these claims.  A new topic that has been lingering for a while has been whether there has been some change in Craze since it was first released.  I have linked my previous coverage of these issues above.

The claim is users that bought the initial production run are now experiencing different effects with more recently produced batches.  Many have noted that it is still a good product for them, but that it does not seem to affect them the same way.  Many have noted tolerance as a potential cause, which makes sense of course.  The persistence of these claims makes one wonder if it is more than that, though.  Fueling the fire of speculation was a labeling change — not long after release, Driven Sports listed Creatine Monohydrate as the first ingredient instead of Betaine Anhydrous.  DS states that the two ingredients occur in exactly the same amount, meaning the choice of which is listed first (ingredients in a proprietary blend must be listed from most prevalent to least prevalent) is arbitrary.  They say they moved Creatine Monohydrate to that first position since it is a far more recognized ingredient.  Beyond that, several new flavors of Craze have been released and some users have claimed those do not affect them the same way their old grape did.

An enormous thread on the bodybuilding.com forums on this topic can be found here: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=147591473

After nearly two months of discussion about placebo, tolerance, dishonesty, and a myriad of other speculations about why these reports were surfacing, Driven Sports owner/founder Matt Cahill posted that he had discovered counterfeit products on the market, at least in Europe.  You can find more information at their blog: here and here.  This does not necessarily address the complaints of domestic customers, however.

So what’s the deal?

I’m not sure.  If the likes of Pat Arnold are to be believed (bear in mind that he has backed off his allegations at the request of DS), then the recent complaints from customers are because Driven Sports removed this mythical additive.  On the other hand,  this could be an issue of tolerance, as mentioned earlier.  People keep using the product and eventually it does not work as well without proper stimulant cycling.  Also, the initial reviews were a bit out of this world.  Perhaps the effects were overstated and the subsequent high expectations simply could not be met.  DS has also made mentions that the product was susceptible to settling, so some users would be getting inconsistent amounts of the active ingredients in each scoop unless they “shook the tub.”

Regardless, the product continues to sell fabulously well online.  The fever pitch of interest seems to have died down, but it still has legions of loyal users and remains a common recommendation and even more common request.  Other companies like MAN and Gaspari have recently released products claiming a Dendrobium extract, so we’ll see if those work the same as DS’s proprietary extract.

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EDIT:  This story has undergone further developments, which I have attempted to summarize at this link.

Truth is, I don’t know.

I can tell you, however, who his lawyer is.  His name is Scott J Ferrell and he has been involved in lawsuits like the Craze lawsuit before.

I see that he has a lawsuit in progress against USPLabs over their use of DMAA. Info here.  The thing of interest in that suit is you’re hearing similar “amphetamine-like” kind of language in regards to a generally safe ingredient, DMAA.

He has also sued ThermoLife, accusing them of false advertising in their Dicana product.  This is mainly concerning their claims to have a patent pending.  I don’t know just yet how that panned out.  Read the legal docs in this PDF.

He successfully sued BSN over false advertisement of their Cheaters Relief product, resulting in refund payouts coming from BSN.  Legal doc here.  He made similar claims in a lawsuit here about several BSN products but I don’t have info on the outcome of that lawsuit.

According to this link, he was actually counter-sued or perhaps pre-emptively sued by a supplement company after he sent a “warning letter” which has been common in his lawsuits.  Apparently they are trying to get him for extortion.

There are actually several other lawsuits open that I have not mentioned here because it was beginning to get tedious.  You get the point.

The lawyer “is an avid runner and swimmer and rarely sleeps.”   Perhaps a fan of supplements as well?

I don’t know what to glean from all of this, but this certainly isn’t the lawyer’s first rodeo.  He has sued supplement companies and won.  I should also mention that if his case against USPLabs is based on relating DMAA to amphetamine, I’d think that he knows little about pharmacology.

EDIT: This story has had further developments, which I have attempted to conclude at this link.

Anyone that is involved in the supplement industry is aware that Driven Sports Craze has been one of the biggest talking points in the supplementation world for a little while now.  Many users reported unparalleled focus, mood boost, etc.  A few users have had negative side effects and another few have just had no effects.  I personally was somewhere between no effect and bad side effects.

The gist of the following lawsuit found first at courthousenews.com (not familiar with the website, but I have seen the court documents which tell me this must be a real thing) is mainly alleging that Craze is spiked with amphetamine or perhaps an analogue.  There is no evidence produced but I hope no legal firm would go forward with this unless there was a lab report somewhere.  I do not have info on Aaron Karmann, the plaintiff, but I’m looking to see if he’s affiliated within the industry.  There have been rumors of this nature since the release of Craze, but to some extent that comes with the territory when you have a supplement that works differently/better than predecessors.

Other parts of the lawsuit include complaints that even the listed ingredients are not legal due to red tape within FDA regulations.  I am not sure how valid these claims are and frankly don’t care much unless Dendrobex is what contains this amphetamine analogue.  Driven Sports claims Dendrobex comes from dendrobium, a long used Chinese medicine ingredient.

A couple things of note:

1. PEA, a perfectly useful and legal stimulant that is on Craze’s label, is technically an amphetamine analogue.  I doubt there will be a legal case to be made if it turns out that the plaintiff is simply anti-PEA.

2. There are no tests offered among the legal documents.  It is possible that the plaintiff plans to produce the tests in court, but at this point it would be unfair to simply assume that DS has spiked the product.

3. This is NOT an FDA case.  This is a lawsuit, as in seeking MONEY.  That doesn’t necessarily make it less legitimate, but there is zero involvement from the FDA at this point and it is simply a man suing Driven Sports and will let other California residents that purchased Craze split the compensation should the lawsuit win.

4. The court date is set for September 2012.

UPDATE: I’ve done a little more digging on the plaintiffs.  Look here for details.

http://www.courthousenews.com/2012/03/21/44876.htm

http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=143497393

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (CN) – A diet supplement maker is selling a mislabeled amphetamine with claims that it is “safe” and “helps put you in a fantastic mood,” a man claims in a class action in Superior Court.
Lead plaintiff Aaron Karmann sued Driven Sports, claiming its Craze diet supplement contains amphetamine, “a dangerous ingredient which is regulated as a controlled substance and a dangerous stimulant in California and thus cannot be lawfully included in a dietary supplement.
A visit to Driven Sports’ website on Tuesday found this ad: “Imagine having something available that helps you train BEYOND YOUR LIMITS. Imagine endless energy. No weight is too great and no personal record is safe. That something would give you unmatched results, where others have failed. That something is Craze”!, the ultimate in pre-workout power!”
But Karmann says: “Defendant claims that the product is a ‘dietary supplement’ which is legal, safe, and efficacious. In reality, the product is intentionally tainted with amphetamine, the illegal and dangerous controlled substance that is not declared as an ingredient on the product’s label.”
He claims that defendant’s product “is intentionally tainted with amphetamine, the illegal and dangerous controlled substance that is not declared as an ingredient on the product’s label.”
The complaint adds: “Defendant makes representations regarding the efficacy, safety and legality of the product which are false, misleading and deceptive. These include, without limitation, that Craze is ‘safe,’ that it ‘helps put you in a fantastic mood and enhances your focus,’ that it is ‘designed to enhance your workouts and enhance your progress,’ and that it can be used by students for studying.
“Plaintiff and members of the class relied on defendant’s misrepresentations and would not have paid as much, if at all, for the products but for defendant’s misrepresentations. As a result, defendant has wrongfully taken millions of dollars from California consumers. Plaintiff brings this lawsuit to enjoin the ongoing defrauding of thousands of California consumers by defendant, and to recover the money taken by its illegal practices.”
Karmann seeks an injunction, costs, restitution, disgorgement, and punitive damages.
He is represented by Scott Ferrell with the Newport Trial Group, of Newport Beach.