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September 01, 2004

Annus won't return Olympic hammer gold

"The Hungarian hammer thrower who was stripped of his gold medal after refusing to take a follow-up drug test at the Athens Olympics said Tuesday he still considers himself the champion and vowed to keep his medal.

Adrian Annus also reiterated his decision to retire rather than deal with what he called a campaign to manipulate test results against him.

"Hammer throwing was my life and this wasn't the way I planned to bid farewell to the sport," Annus told the state-run news wire MTI. "I only want my family and I to be left alone.""

Read more at Annus won't return Olympic hammer gold

Posted by Darren at 10:41 AM

August 30, 2004

Hammer Gold Medallist Annus Loses Medal

"Olympic men's hammer champion Adrian Annus has been stripped of his gold medal after failing to take a drugs test, the International Olympic Committee said Sunday.

The Hungarian failed to meet an IOC deadline Friday to submit a urine sample or lose the gold.

The IOC's disciplinary commission opened its hearing on the final day of the Games, exactly one week after Annus won the gold.

Annus, who returned to Hungary and announced his retirement from sport after winning his medal, provided a negative dope test after the competition."

Read more at Hammer Gold Medallist Annus Loses Medal

Posted by Darren at 01:59 AM

Colombian cyclist stripped of medal

"Colombian cyclist Maria Luisa Calle Williams has been stripped of her bronze medal after testing positive for a banned stimulant, the International Olympic Committee said on Sunday. Calle Williams tested positive for the substance heptaminol, the IOC said.

She was third in the women's points race in the velodrome on Wednesday, giving Colombia its first medal of any colour in the short history of women's Olympic track cycling."

Read more at Colombian cyclist stripped of medal

Posted by Darren at 01:35 AM

Doping cases at the Athens Games

This is a summary article of all of the doping cases at the Athens Olympics....

"Greek weightlifter Leonidas Sampanis was the first athlete in Athens stripped of a medal because of a doping offense. Sampanis lost his bronze from the 62-kilogram class.

-- Russian shot putter Irina Korzhanenko tested positive for steroids after she won the gold and was stripped of her medal.

-- Hungary's Robert Fazekas lost his gold medal in discus for allegedly tampering with a doping test.

-- Hungarian weightlifter Ferenc Gyurkovics was stripped of his silver medal and kicked out of the Olympics for using the steroid oxandrolone.

-- Ukrainian rower Olena Olefirenko tested positive for a banned stimulant, costing her four-woman crew the bronze medal in lightweight sculls.

-- Hungary's Adrian Annus was stripped of his gold medal in hammer throw Sunday for failing to take a follow-up drug test demanded by the IOC.

-- Weightlifter Zoltan Kovacs of Hungary, who finished last in the 105-kilogram class, was banished from the games for failing to provide a urine sample.

-- Greek sprinters Kostas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou pulled out of the games while the IOC was investigating their missed doping tests."

Read more at Doping cases at the Athens Games

Posted by Darren at 01:28 AM

August 29, 2004

2 More Olympic Athletes Expelled from Games on Doping Charges

"Two more Olympic athletes have been expelled from the 2004 Games because of doping. The International Olympic Committee says Puerto Rican wrestler Mabel Fonseca and Hungarian weightlifter Ferenc Gyurkovics both tested positive for banned steroids.

Gyurkovics will be stripped of his silver medal in the 105 kilogram class because of the failed drug test. Fonseca finished fifth in the women's 55 kilogram category. In addition to being expelled from the 2004 Games, both athletes face a possible two-year ban each from their international federations."

Read more at 2 More Olympic Athletes Expelled from Games on Doping Charges

Posted by Darren at 05:56 AM

August 28, 2004

Hunt is on for Olympic hammer champ Annus

"Anti-doping authorities were trying to track down Olympic champion Adrian Annus on Friday amid suspicions the Hungarian may have duped drug-testers after winning a gold medal in the hammer throw. Annus, who announced his retirement from the sport on Friday, left Greece immediately after striking gold in the hammer on Sunday. Mandatory drug tests carried out on the athlete after the event were negative. But following the controversy over Hungary's discus champion Robert Fazekas - who was stripped of his Olympic gold medal for failing to provide a urine sample - questions have now been raised over his friend Annus. International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Jacques Rogge confirmed to AFP that the athlete was being sought by drug-testers. "

Read more at Hunt is on for Olympic hammer champ Annus

Posted by Darren at 06:26 AM

August 27, 2004

Kenteris Says He Did Nothing Wrong

"Greek sprinter Kostas Kenteris was overwhelmed by the outpouring of support in his absence at Olympic Stadium. Thousands of fans chanted his name Thursday night at the 200-meter sprint, an event Kenteris pulled out of after missing a drug test. "When I heard all these people - the thousands of people - shout my name, it was the most beautiful thing that I have heard in recent years," Kenteris told the TV Mytilini channel."

Read more at AP Wire | 08/27/2004 | Kenteris Says He Did Nothing Wrong

Posted by Darren at 10:13 PM

Rumors running rampant as more athletes get caught

" It was just a rumor, and as with most rumors, no one knew how or where it started. It didn't matter. It was hot, a big-time doping rumor, so it kept spreading, proliferating in a climate ripe for this kind of thing. First it was a male sprinter, then a female sprinter; it was a medalist, no, not a medalist; an American, no, not an American. It lasted about two days, this rumor, but it's the kind of thing that has permeated these Games. With three days of competition remaining, the Athens Olympics have caught more athletes doping -- 16 -- than any previous Olympics, and there have been four medals stripped, two gold."

Read more at Rumors running rampant as more athletes get caught

Posted by Darren at 09:04 PM

Anton Galkin - Russian athlete fails test

Russian athlete fails test A Russian 400m runner has been thrown out of the Olympics after failing a drugs test. Anton Galkin is the 18th athlete to be expelled from the Games for alleged doping offences - a new record. Galkin tested positive for stanozolol after finishing fourth in his semi-final last Saturday.
Read more at Russian athlete fails test

Posted by Darren at 07:21 PM

August 26, 2004

Shot putter won't return medal

"Russia's Irina Korzhanenko, who won the Olympic Games shot put before being stripped of her gold after failing a drugs test, insisted on Wednesday that she would not give back her medal.

"It's so sweet to crucify the Olympic champion to prove that the war against doping is going on," she told the Izvestia newspaper.

"I don't believe either the results of the Greek laboratory or the activity of (anti-doping agency) Wada.

"I will not return my gold medal. I won it and I'm Olympic champion. I'm completely sure I did not use any doping.""

Read more at Shot putter won't return medal

Posted by Darren at 09:00 PM

Hungarian Weightlifter Under Investigation

"A Hungarian weightlifter was under investigation Wednesday for failing to provide a urine sample after his competition, a spokesman for the country's Olympic committee said.

Zoltan Kovacs, who finished at the bottom Tuesday in the 105kg weightlifting, testified before the IOC disciplinary committee, according to Hungarian team spokesman Dezso Vad. A final decision on his case was expected Thursday.

"He said he made a mistake," Vad said. "He was very sorry, and that's all."

The weightlifter claimed he left the venue after his competition and learned a urine sample was needed only when he arrived at the athletes' village, Vad said. Kovacs said he went to the testing center three times, but could find no one willing to help him, the spokesman added."

Read more at Hungarian Weightlifter Under Investigation

Posted by Darren at 06:00 AM

Athletes' medical files seized

"Prosecutors seized the hospital records on Wednesday of two disgraced sprinters who withdrew from the Olympics after missing a doping test and crashing on a motorcycle.

Prosecutors Spyros Mouzakitis and Athina Theodopoupou visited Athens' KAT trauma hospital and left with files containing the hospitalisation records of Kostas Kenteris, the 200-metre gold medalist in 2000, and Katerina Thanou, who took silver in the 100 metres in Sydney, a source in the Athens prosecutors office said.

The two athletes crashed on a motorcycle and were hospitalised a few hours after they could not be found at the Olympic Village for a drug test."

Read more at Athletes' medical files seized

Posted by Darren at 01:58 AM

August 25, 2004

Olympic Discus Champion Thrown Out of Games

"Hungarian Olympic discus champion Robert Fazekas will lose his gold medal and be expelled from the Games after being caught trying to tamper with a urine sample, an International Olympic Committee source said Tuesday.

The source also said Belarussian high jumper Aleksey Lesnichiy, who was last in the qualifying round, had tested positive for the anabolic agent clenbuterol.

Fazekas was spotted by officials trying to tamper with his sample after Monday's final.

Lithuanian Virgilijus Alekna will now be awarded the gold, Zoltan Kovago (Hungary) and Aleksander Tammert (Estonia) the bronze.

Hungarian Olympic Committee spokesman Dezso Vad said he was unaware of the IOC decision.

"We have heard that he could not give enough urine and he was there (at the doping control) until 0300 in the morning and he just could not give enough. That's the only thing we know and that the IOC was meeting to discuss this," he said.

"We have not received any official notification.""

Read more at Olympic Discus Champion Thrown Out of Games

Posted by Darren at 12:47 AM

August 24, 2004

Anabolic steroids found in Greek coachs warehouse

"A search of a warehouse used by the coach at the center of a doping scandal involving the countrys star sprinters uncovered small amounts of anabolic steroids, Greeces National Organization of Medicines said Monday.

The search coach Christos Tsekos facilities last week was part of an investigation into whether 2000 Olympic medalists Kostas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou tried to avoid a doping test on the eve of the Athens Games by staging a motorcycle accident.

A prosecutor and two inspectors from the agency, the Greek equivalent of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, confiscated 641 boxes of food supplements and found that more than 1,000 of the supplements listed ephedrine as the main ingredient."

Read more at Anabolic steroids found in Greek coachs warehouse

Posted by Darren at 05:17 AM

August 23, 2004

Doping scandals spoiling party for hosts

"He swore on his children -- his "two little angels" -- that he's clean.

In Greek terms, there's no more powerful oath. This is the Olympics, though, and the real authority rests with the anti-doping bloodhounds.

Greece's top two sprinters bowed out of the games last week rather than face them. On Sunday, a sobbing and pleading Leonidas Sampanis returned his bronze weightlifting medal after tests showed twice the acceptable amount of testosterone.

"I swear to God. I swear on my children, my two little angels, that I never took anything," he said on national television. "I want you all to stand by me."

Sampanis was the first athlete at the Athens Games to lose a medal because of doping results. It took the coaxing of a teammate to persuade Sampanis to hand back the medal -- which carries the image of the winged Greek goddess Nike, or Victory.

Losing that medal took Greece's tally down to six. Without sprinters Kostas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou to rely on, hopes of surpassing the 13 medals won by Greeks in Sydney four years ago seemed unlikely."

Read more at Doping scandals spoiling party for hosts

Posted by Darren at 10:19 PM

I was THG whistleblower, admits Gatlin coach

"The coach of new Olympic 100 metres champion Justin Gatlin has admitted he was the man who sent a syringe of the designer steroid THG (tetrahydrogestrinone) to the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).

The receipt of the syringe from an unknown source in June last year gave drug testers their first hint of the existence of the new substance and kicked off an ongoing international doping scandal.

"I did it. As a coach it seemed the right thing to do at the time and it still does," Trevor Graham told Reuters after Gatlin won the sprint gold in Athens this morning.

"Would I do it again? Yes.""

Read more at I was THG whistleblower, admits Gatlin coach

Posted by Darren at 05:20 PM

Korzhanenko fails dope test

"Women's shot put gold medallist Irina Korzhaenko of Russia has failed a drugs test, according to reports.

"I think it was steroids, but that will be announced later," Arne Ljungqvist, president of the IOC's medical commission, told the AFP news agency.

"It's very sad and it tarnishes what was intended to be a very symbolic event," he added.

Russian Olympic team spokesman Gennady Shvets would not confirm the reports but said there was a "problem".

"We are looking into it at the moment," he said.

The shot put competition was held at Olympia, the birthplace of the Olympics, and was meant to be a showpiece of the Games."

Read more at Korzhanenko fails dope test

Posted by Darren at 01:21 AM

August 21, 2004

Greek drugs drama dominates - Leonidas Sampanis test positive

"Greece has been rocked by the threat of being stripped of an Athens Games medal and the host nation's team manager has offered to quit, as doping overshadows Michael Phelps' drive to be Olympic swimming's top medal winner.

Weightlifter Leonidas Sampanis, a national hero days ago when he won his country's first medal at the Games, became the latest Greek athlete to be hit by drug woes that have plagued the Olympics throughout their first week.

"I am stunned. I am going mad. We do not, and I stress this, do not, give our athletes testosterone," Sampanis's coach Christos Iakovou said on Friday after confirming the athlete had tested positive for a banned substance.

If Sampanis' second sample tests positive he will be stripped of his bronze medal and expelled from the Games.

Hours later Greek team manager Yiannis Papadoyiannakis offered to resign, but his bosses quickly tried to smooth over the new embarrassment in a saga that the Greek government has warned threatens the image of the birthplace of the Olympics."

Read more at Greek drugs drama dominates

Posted by Darren at 03:20 PM

Breaking Olympic Drug Scandal News

News has just broken in New Zealand that a Kiwi Cyclist has just withdrawn from the Olympics because he took a banned substance months ago and traces are still showing up in his system.

News is sketchy but we'll update this with more details as they come to hand.

Also in related doping news a Greek Weightlifter is likely to have his bronze medal taken from him after being tested for drugs after competition.

Posted by Darren at 03:10 PM

August 20, 2004

Prosecutors to check sprinters' injuries

"A prosecutor looking into the suspicious motorcycle accident involving Greek sprinters Kostas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou wants to take a closer look at the injuries sustained by the athletes, a judicial source said Thursday.

Prosecutor Haralambos Lakafosis, overseeing the investigation into the accident, wants to question some of the doctors at Athens' KAT hospital, a senior source in the Athens prosecutor's office told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

The medical condition of the two athletes is considered a key part of the investigation into the accident and could answer allegations that it may not have taken place or was staged."

Read more at Prosecutors to check sprinters' injuries

Posted by Darren at 03:46 AM

August 19, 2004

Greek sprinters' motorbike accident faked: legal source

"Initial investigations have revealed that Greek sprinters Kostadinos Kenteris and Ekaterini Thanou faked a motorcycle accident after missing a drugs test, a high-ranking legal source said.

Kenteris, the Olympic 200 metres champion from the 2000 Sydney Olympics (news - web sites), and Thanou, a women's 100m silver medallist in those Games, were said to have suffered minor injuries in the mysterious accident which occurred late last Thursday after they had failed to appear for a doping test at the Olympic village.

Greek heroes Kenteris and Thanou withdrew from the games on Wednesday after appearing before an International Olympic Committee (news - web sites) disciplinary hearing.

The probe by a Greek prosecutor had shown that either the accident did not take place at all, or that the athletes deliberately crashed the bike in order to give themselves injuries, the source, a high-ranking official, added."

Read more at Greek sprinters' motorbike accident faked: legal source

Posted by Darren at 11:03 PM

IWF Suspends Five More Weightlifters

"Five weightlifters were suspended Thursday for flunking drug tests they took before the Olympics, including two who were pulled out just before walking to the lifting stand.

The International Weightlifting Federation said the suspended lifters were Wafa Ammouri of Morocco (website - news) , Zoltan Kecskes of Hungary, Viktor Chislean of Moldova, Pratima Kumari Na of India and Sule Sahbaz of Turkey - raising to 20 the number of world-class weightlifters suspended this year."

Read more at IWF Suspends Five More Weightlifters

Posted by Darren at 10:59 PM

Greece's loss a win for all drug-free competitors

"When Ben Johnson was stripped of his gold medal and evicted from the Seoul Olympics in 1988, there was a sense that this was a lucky strike for the movement against drugs in sport. His had been a random test, and he and his handlers had been ham-fisted in the management of his regime.

The withdrawal yesterday of Kostas Kederis and Katerina Thanou from the 2004 Games in their homeland is the biggest Olympics drugs story since, but this time it is different. The only honourable way out now is to take the fifth amendment and the first bus home.

Against a background of the much increased power and stringency of the World Anti-Doping Authority, ground-breaking developments in drug testing and the United States' belated but welcome campaign to toughen up on drugs, it seems that cheating is the exception. Suspicions will not be aroused if, as expected, few or no world records are set at these Games."

Read more at Greece's loss a win for all drug-free competitors

Posted by Darren at 03:57 AM

Greek Sprinters Pull out of Olympic Games

"Greece's two top sprinters pulled out of the Athens Games on Wednesday and apologized over a drugs drama that besmirched the spiritual homeland of the Olympics.

It was the biggest drugs scandal to hit the Olympic movement since 100 meter gold medallist Ben Johnsons's ignominious exit from the Seoul Games in 1988 over a positive test for steroids.

Greek Olympic 200 meters champion Costas Kenteris, a national hero dubbed "Greece Lightning," said he was withdrawing "out of a sense of responsibility."

"I am adamant, I was never notified to go to the Olympic Village to take the test."

"Over the last years, I have gone through over 30 tests with no problems," he added, referring to his missed eve-of-Games test last Thursday."

Read more at Greek Sprinters Pull Out of Games

Also read about this story at Kenteris quits Olympics

Posted by Darren at 01:44 AM

August 18, 2004

Torri Edwards out of Games, suspension upheld

"U.S. sprinter Torri Edwards was knocked out of the Olympics for good Tuesday when an arbitration panel upheld her two-year drug suspension.

Edwards had been considered a medal contender in the 100 and 200 meters at the Athens Games. She inherited the world championship in the 100 when Kelli White forfeited that crown because of drug use.

Edwards tested positive for the banned stimulant nikethamide at a meet in Martinique on April 24, but blamed the result on a glucose supplement she took because she wasn't feeling well. She said her physician bought the glucose at a store on the Caribbean island, and that she was unaware it contained the banned substance."

Read more at Edwards out of Games, suspension upheld

Posted by Darren at 04:37 AM

August 16, 2004

Lauryn Williams Has No Problem Running with Marion Jones

"American sprinter Lauryn Williams said on Monday she would have no problem competing on the same team as Marion Jones in the Olympic 4x100 meters relay.

Even if Jones, who is under scrutiny by U.S. anti-doping officials, were eventually charged with an offence and the U.S. runners were stripped of any relay medal they might win, "it's fine with me" that Jones runs, Williams told a news conference.

"The coaches will make the best decision and as long as they feel they have made the best decision and that's who they have on the relay when it's time to run, I'm going to run and I am going to be very proud," Williams said."

Read more at Williams Has No Problem Running with Jones

Posted by Darren at 10:00 PM

Accused Greeks granted hearing delay

"Lawyers representing Kostas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou have succeeded in postponing until Wednesday the IOC disciplinary hearing into their missed drugs tests.

It is the second such delay and means the case will continue to cast its shadow over the Games for at least the next 48 hours, rather than there being a line drawn under the episode today.

The International Olympic Committee had initially been hoping to deal with the issue last Friday."

Read more at Accused Greeks granted hearing delay

Posted by Darren at 09:12 PM

Testers failed to find Greek sprinters

"Drug testers tried unsuccessfully for two days to track down Greek sprinters Costas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou in Chicago just before the Athens Olympics opened on August 13, IAAF president Lamine Diack has said.

"They weren't in Chicago, that's why the IOC (International Olympic Committee) tried to test them in the village," Diack, the head of the International Association of Athletics Federation, said on Sunday.

The pair have been suspended from the Games by the Greek Olympic Committee pending an IOC hearing on Monday."

Read more at Testers failed to find Greek sprinters

Posted by Darren at 03:17 AM

August 15, 2004

Greeks Suspend Star Sprinters

"Star sprinters Kostas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou were suspended Saturday from the Greek Olympic team for missing drug tests, but their fate was left in the hands of the International Olympic Committee (news - web sites).

The Greek committee's seven-member board removed the athletes pending a final decision by the IOC (news - web sites) at a hearing Monday. The sprinters' coach, Christos Tsekos, was also suspended.

The case has shamed Greece and overshadowed the opening of what was supposed to be a triumphant showcase of national pride and achievement at the Athens Games.

Making the situation worse, police are now investigating a suspicious motorcycle accident that put the two in the hospital Thursday night just hours after drug testers failed to find them in the Olympic Village. The runners sustained cuts and bruises, and were to be released Monday."

Read more at Greeks Suspend Star Sprinters, Coach

Posted by Darren at 04:24 PM

August 14, 2004

Greek sprinter Kenteris was candidate to light cauldron

"Dogged by charges of skipping a drug test, Greece's top sprinter had been a candidate to run with the torch in the final moments of the opening ceremony at the Athens Games but was passed over, local organizers said.

Organizers ended days of speculation Saturday by acknowledging that Kostas Kenteris was on a list of 12 athletes who were candidates to participate in the last part of the relay, which concluded at the main stadium during Friday's ceremony. Organizers wouldn't say why Kenteris did not get the honor.

Nikolaos Kaklamanakis, a Greek windsurfing champion from the Atlanta Games, ultimately lit the cauldron. Six athletes ran with the torch in the stadium, though organizers had originally said there would be seven torchbearers."

Greek sprinter Kenteris, dogged by charges of skipping drug test, was candidate to light cauldron

Posted by Darren at 11:22 PM

Torri Edwards Doping Appeal Scheduled for Monday

"World 100 meters champion Torri Edwards will have her appeal against a two-year doping ban heard by a Court of Arbitration for Sport appeal panel Monday.

If the CAS clears Edwards, the American will be eligible to compete in the Athens Olympics, which opened Friday night.

"The hearing will be Monday evening, the composition of the panel will be announced later," CAS secretary-general Matthieu Reeb told Reuters Saturday.

Edwards, who inherited the title when compatriot Kelli White admitted taking a variety of banned drugs, tested positive for the stimulant nikethamide at a meeting in Martinique last April.

She was scheduled to run in the 100 and 200 meters once the Olympic athletics program opens next Friday and would probably have been included in the 4x100 relay team."

Read more at Torri Edwards Doping Appeal Scheduled for Monday

Posted by Darren at 10:53 PM

Costas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou - Greek sprinters withdrawn from Games

"Greek sprinters Costas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou will be withdrawn from the Olympic Games, a source close to the Greek team says.

The cases of Kenteris, the Olympic 200 metres champion, and Thanou, runner-up in the Sydney Games 100 metres, were being discussed at a meeting of the Greek Olympic Committee.

The two are due to attend an International Olympic Committee disciplinary hearing on Monday to explain why they missed a drugs test this week in Athens."

Read more at Greek sprinters withdrawn from Games

Posted by Darren at 10:51 PM

Greece's top athlete may drop out of Games

"Greece's biggest star might drop out of the Athens Games after missing a drug test, shaming the host nation as it opened its first Olympics in more than a century. Greece's Olympic Committee will meet Saturday to discuss the bizarre case of sprinter Kostas Kenteris, the 200-meter Olympic champion who is accused of dodging a drug test and was later hospitalized after a motorcycle crash.

A source within the committee, speaking on condition of anonymity, told The Associated Press that one topic at the meeting will be whether Kenteris should withdraw from the games.

Even if he drops out, the International Olympic Committee probably will proceed with its doping case against him. A hearing was set for Monday.

Kenteris and fellow Greek sprinter Katerina Thanou were in a motorcycle wreck Thursday night just hours after drug testers failed to find them in the Olympic village."

Read more at Greece's top athlete may drop out of Games

Posted by Darren at 08:10 AM

Ukrainian star - Ihor Pashchuk fails dope test

"Ukrainian light-welterweight Ihor Pashchuk was disqualified from the Olympic boxing competition after failing a medical examination.

Organisers said Pashchuk, who reached the final of this years European championship, had not passed the test conducted yesterday before the weigh-in.

The 20-year-old Pashchuk failed to weigh in for this years European championship final but his surprise win over Frances Willy Blain in the semi-finals was enough to earn him qualification for the Athens Games.

His disqualification means there are 283 boxers left in the competition before the draw later on Friday, instead of the initial 286."

Read more at Ukrainian star fails dope test

Posted by Darren at 08:08 AM

IOC delay averts opening day shame for Greece

"The International Olympic Committee (IOC) spared Greece major embarrassment on the opening day of the Athens Games on Friday by granting its two top sprinters more time to explain why they missed a dope test.

A 72-hour extension for Costas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou, after they failed to show up for a Friday disciplinary commission drugs tribunal, was perhaps only a postponement of what could still turn into a national scandal.

The sprinters are in hospital after being injured in a mystery overnight motorcycle accident. Both were said to be stable and not seriously hurt but have been ordered to stay in medical care for at least two more days.

An IOC statement said: "In order to ensure a fair process and give due consideration to the athletes the disciplinary commission has decided to postpone the hearing until Monday, August 16."

After waiting in vain for the pair to leave hospital for the hearing, IOC drugs-panel member Sergei Bubka, a former Olympic pole vault champion, said: "It was a doctors decision. It wasnt really our decision.""

Read more at IOC delay averts opening day shame for Greece

Posted by Darren at 08:03 AM

August 13, 2004

Early Setback for Athens Games

"Home heroes Kostas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou will attempt to save their careers in Athens today but the damage to the Olympics their country is so proud to host has already been done.

If current 200metres Olympic champion Kenteris and former world indoor champion Thanou cannot come up with a plausible excuse for failing to take a random test in the Athletes Village yesterday, they will be expelled from the Games in disgrace and serve an automatic two-year ban.

Wild rumours circulating round the Greek capital as the stunned host nation attempted to come to terms with the most devastating blow to Olympic credibility since Ben Johnson tested positive in 1988 included that Kenteris and Thanou were simply not told about the test.

It later emerged that the pair had been involved in a road traffic accident shortly after they had missed the drugs test."

Read more at Early Setback for Athens Games.

Posted by Darren at 03:09 PM

Growth hormone test being used at Olympics

"The president of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Dick Pound confirmed that a test to detect human growth hormone (HGH) was being used at the Athens Olympics.

"We have a test to find HGH," Pound told a media conference here on the eve of the Games.

Pound said the doping authorities were deliberately not revealing how far back the test could detect the use of growth hormone, which has to be administered over a longer period than, for example, anabolic steroids.

"The parameters of that test we are keeping secret as there is no advantage in giving anyone any help in avoiding detection. I would rather they were faced with a very unpleasant surprise," he said."

Growth hormone test being used at Olympics

Posted by Darren at 01:38 PM

Dick Pound blames sleazy drug culture on US coaches

"Earlier today the head of the world's anti doping watchdog, Dick Pound, held a press conference where he took a swipe at drugs cheats, singling out the activities of the US track and field team.

Dick Pound says there's a sleazy drug culture within US track and field circles and he blames the managers and coaches for it.

His comments come as the number of athletes being sent home from Athens after testing positive for drugs continues to grow.

He outlined the new testing regime to the media, as Olympic correspondent Fran Kelly now reports from Athens."

Read more at Pound blames sleazy drug culture on US coaches.

Posted by Darren at 12:50 PM

Serious new side effects of performance enhancing drugs

"As the countdown continues to the Athens Olympics, a new Australian study by a team ofSouthern Cross University (SCU) scientists has revealed serious new side effects of performance enhancing drugs.

The SCU study, led by Dr Robert Weatherby, has revealed that the use of anabolic steroids may significantly increase susceptibility to viral infections and cancers and raises questions about the dangers of long-term use of the banned substances.

The study, completed over six weeks under strict ethical and health controls, was carried out in conjunction with Mentorn, Channel 4 (UK) and New Scientist. The experiment formed part of the documentary High Performance, which screens on Foxtel tonight (Wednesday, August 11)."

Read more at Serious new side effects of performance enhancing drugs

Posted by Darren at 12:54 AM

Torri Edwards banned two years

"US sprinter Torri Edwards, who was favored to win two medals here, was banned for two years yesterday by the US Anti-Doping Agency for using a banned stimulant in an April meet in Martinique.

Unless the Court of Arbitration for Sport overturns the ban on appeal, two-time champion Gail Devers will take Edwards's place in the 100 meters andLaShaunta'e Moore would step up in the 200. Had Devers decided to focus on the hurdles, defending champion Marion Jones would have taken the vacant spot in the 100, but Devers said Tuesday that she would run both events if Edwards were suspended. A ruling on the case is expected before track and field events begin next week.

Edwards tested positive for the banned stimulant nikethamide. She said she took it inadvertently, saying she did not know it was in glucose pills that had been bought for her on the island."

Read more at Edwards banned two years.

Posted by Darren at 12:48 AM

WADA chief chides U.S. track officials

"The head of the World Anti-Doping Agency again criticized U.S. track officials Thursday over recent drug use by American athletes, and warned that Marion Jones will be in a "deep hole" if she's lying about not using banned substances.

While acknowledging that Jones has never been charged with a doping offense, WADA chief Dick Pound pointed out it might be possible to strip an athlete of Olympic medals up to eight years later. That means Jones' five medals from the 2000 Sydney Games could be at risk if she is found guilty of using performance-enhancing substances.

Jones is under investigation by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency but has not been charged."

Read more at WADA chief chides U.S. track officials.

Posted by Darren at 12:39 AM

August 11, 2004

BALCO taints U.S. Olympians

"The BALCO investigation and subsequent tarnish has done what years of the disproportioned priorities of the Iron Curtain couldn't -- demerit the Olympic ideal of stronger, faster, higher to the point where skepticism runs unabated.

Much to the vindictive glee of the rest of the world, the BALCO scandal has knocked America off the high moral perch it boisterously touted at every turn.

We all knew that the former East German swimmers turned their bodies into governmental genetic experiments and that the former Soviet Union grossly diverted its resources to train its "military" people to dominate the United States in every athletic endeavor imaginable.

But it didn't matter to us.

We'd beat them anyway.

Each victory served as another validation for winning the right way."

Read more at BALCO taints U.S. Olympians .

Posted by Darren at 06:08 PM

Brenda Taylor Says She Turned Down Drug

"Brenda Taylor is nobody's fool. She graduated magna cum laude from Harvard with a degree in cognitive neuroscience and is headed for law school when her track career ends.

So when the 400-meter hurdler was offered a performance-enhancing drug at the 2003 U.S. championships, she says she just said no.

"They offered me modafinil before the USAs last year, and I think I'm the only person that didn't take it," Taylor said.

Modafinil is the banned stimulant that resulted in sprinter Kelli White's positive drug test at last year's world championships in Paris. White, who won the 100 and 200 at the worlds, later accepted a two-year ban from the sport and admitted using undetectable steroids and the endurance-enhancing drug EPO.

Taylor just smiled and wouldn't answer when asked who offered her the drug, and she didn't say who the others were who took it. But in an interview at the U.S. pre-Olympic training camp she emphasized that she supports the hard line being taken against performance-enhancing drugs in track and field."

Read more at U.S. Hurdler Says She Turned Down Drug

Posted by Darren at 04:47 PM

Faster, Higher, Stronger, Cheater - U.S. athletics coming clean

"Faster, higher, stronger...cheater? U.S. athletics has introduced a fourth wheel into the Olympic motto, one that could force the powerhouse nation into its weakest medal haul in recent years in Athens. In just one year, a grand total of 18 athletes have been involved in doping scandals and the numbers are still growing.

It all started one year ago with leaked information on a previously undetectable steroid and the...shock hit the fan.

One by one, major stars from sprinter Kelli White to middle distance runner Regina Jacobs began dropping like flies as the clean up of U.S. athletics finally began.

After 25 years of rumours and cover-ups, the nation that pointed fingers quicker and shouted accusations louder than the others is now the one under the most serious scrutiny.

No, the suspicion goes way back beyond the discovery of THG.

Alarms roared last spring when news leaked that nine times Olympic gold medallist Carl Lewis had failed a drugs test in 1988, the year a "disgraced" Ben Johnson was stripped of his gold medal at the Seoul Games."

Read more at U.S. athletics coming clean

Posted by Darren at 12:55 PM

Ian Thorpe urges more drug testing

"Ian Thorpe has called for more emphasis on out-of-competition testing to take the fight to the drug-cheaters in sport.

The Australian swimming superstar raised the hackles of world governing body FINA last month when he said it would be naive to believe swimming would be clean of drugs at the Athens Games.

FINA hit back, saying that Thorpe's attitude was unacceptable because he was accusing all swimmers at the Olympic Games of being doped without any proof.

While reluctant to get embroiled in further controversy over the burning issue, the 21-year-old Olympic and world champion told a press conference that while blood-testing was an important component, so was out-of-competition testing of athletes."

Read more at Thorpe urges more drug testing

Posted by Darren at 12:41 PM

First Doping Case of the Athens Olympics - David Munyasia

"The International Olympic Committee (IOC) today announced that boxer David
Munyasia from Kenya has been excluded from the Games of the XXVIII Olympiad in Athens in 2004 after testing positive for cathine, a prohibited stimulant.

High concentration of cathine
The Disciplinary Commission unanimously concluded that Mr Munyasia had committed a doping offense pursuant to Article 5.1 of the Rules in that there was the presence of a concentration of cathine in Mr Munyasias urine estimated at higher than 20mgr/mL. Cathine is prohibited when its concentration is greater than 5 micrograms per milliliter."

Read more at Frst doping case of Athens 2004 Olympic Games.

Posted by Darren at 11:59 AM

Drugs agency under fire from big guns

"With just two days to go before the Games, when the much-publicised uniform anti-doping code will be implemented for the first time, The Daily Telegraph can reveal huge disagreements at the top level of the Olympic movement about the new drugs policy.

Two major figures fear that a blanket two-year ban imposed under the code may let those who get caught at the Games go unpunished, apart from being sent home.

Denis Oswald, a member of the International Olympic Committee executive and one of president Jacque Rogge's most trusted colleagues, who oversaw the preparations for Athens, said: "The blanket two-year ban is unworkable.""

Read more at Drugs agency under fire from big guns .

Posted by Darren at 11:57 AM

August 10, 2004

Jacques Rogge expects doping rise

"Olympic chief Jacques Rogge has told the BBC he expects more positive dope tests in Athens than in Sydney in 2000.

He said testers would follow the lead of the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Games which saw a big rise in positive tests.

"Each positive case is a victory. It eliminates a cheat and sends a message to those who want to cheat," he said.

"In 2002 we had seven positive tests as opposed to five in the previous 18 Games. We might see the same effect in Athens, and I won't be sorry."

Read more at Rogge expects doping rise

Posted by Darren at 09:19 PM

Doping watchdogs believe U.S. Olympic team is relatively drug-free

"Here, in one corner of an innocuous, two-story office building that sits across the street from Romano's Macaroni Grill and a Courtyard by Marriott, is where America's war against Olympic drug cheats is being waged.

And it's where Terry Madden, the chief executive of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, is being pressed about whether he and his quasi-independent organization can assure the sporting public that the U.S. Olympic team will be drug-free this summer. The Opening Ceremonies of the Athens Games are three days away, and Madden, understandably, doesn't want to get pushed into making sweeping declarations about the purity of the American contingent.

Finally, he says this: "We've done everything possible to send a clean team to Athens. I believe it's a clean team. Am I saying that 100 percent of America's athletes are going to be clean there? No. But I think we and the (U. S. Olympic Committee) have done everything possible to send the cleanest athletes.""

Read more at Doping watchdogs believe U.S. Olympic team is relatively drug-free.

Posted by Darren at 09:02 PM

Bernard Williams Tested Positive but will Still compete

"American sprinter Bernard Williams tested positive for a metabolite of cannabis at a meeting in Seville in June, but can still compete in Athens.

Williams, a gold medal winner in the US 4x100m relay team at the Sydney Games, only received a warning despite testing positive for the banned substance.

The US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) said Williams had committed a first offence."

Read more at Williams tested positive

Posted by Darren at 03:12 PM

Anti-doping officials say U.S. attitude toward banned drugs has changed

"The United States' invigorated fight against drugs in sports has led to major anti-doping progress since the 2000 Sydney Olympics, officials said Monday, but a rash of positive tests on the eve of the Athens Games shows much work remains.

Officials in Athens, as well as back in North America, said improved cooperation between sports movements and governments such as the U.S. probe of BALCO that has led to suspensions for several track and field athletes has made it tougher for athletes to break the rules.

And they said the United States, which four years ago had a worldwide reputation of being soft on drug-using athletes, now has shown it will no longer tolerate doping."

Read more at Anti-doping officials say U.S. attitude toward banned drugs has changed dramatically since 2000 Olympics

Posted by Darren at 02:24 PM

Jobie Dajka Loses Doping Appeal

"Track cyclist Jobie Dajka has lost his appeal against his expulsion from Australia's Olympic team.

The ex-world keirin champion was taken off the team after being charged with bringing the sport into disrepute when he admitted lying to a doping inquiry.

Dajka appealed to the Sydney-based Court of Arbitration for Sport but it ruled on Monday the ban should stand. Furious Dajka said: "I'm probably the first to be ejected from an Olympics for taking a vitamin. It's a joke."

He added: "I will just have a month off and start again. It's what I live for. I've done nothing wrong.""

Read more at Cyclist Dajka loses appeal

Posted by Darren at 02:23 PM

Jovino Gonzalez Dropped from Spanish Olympic Canoe Team

"Canoeist Jovino Gonzalez has tested positive for banned substance EPO and been dropped from Spain's Olympic team.

"Gonzalez tested positive for EPO in a surprise test before the Games," said a Spanish Sports Council spokesman.

"He's waived a 'B' test and from now on our Olympic Committee will take appropriate measures," added Spain's Olympic chief Jose Maria Echevarria."

Read more at Gonzalez dropped by Spain

Posted by Darren at 02:05 PM

Cathal Lombard says doping 'epidemic'

"THE Irish distance runner Cathal Lombard has admitted taking the banned performance-enhancing drug EPO.

Lombard, a 28-year-old solicitor from Cork, revealed he only took the substance in order to keep pace with the other leading athletes, but admitted he had been "naive" to think he could cover it up.

"I didnt set out to try and win medals or to make money. I just wanted to be as competitive as I could and have an equal chance with everyone else," he told the Irish Examiner. "I am not trying to justify what I did in any way; I am just saying this was the case, this is what I did and, hands up, I did it."

Lombard, who had qualified to run in the 10,000 metres and 5,000m in Athens, has returned to Ireland from his training base in Italy. "

Read more at Lombard says doping 'epidemic'.

Posted by Darren at 01:59 PM

Doping Cases Mark New Era of Olympic Testing

"Before the torch is lit or the first athlete hits the field, new anti-doping regulations are already threatening to take some of the luster away from the 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Athens.

But experts say the publicity surrounding recent doping scandals involving athletes using designer steroids like THG or other banned substances should instead be taken as a sign that officials are serious about eliminating athletes who use performance-enhancing drugs from competition.

"Expect more of these cases, not because that's reflective that the whole world is rotten, but rather that we are now doing the proper job of identifying the minority of athletes who are offenders in this area," says Andrew L. Pipe, MD, who is on his way to Athens as medical advisor to the International Basketball Federation."

Read me at Doping Cases Mark New Era of Olympic Testing

Posted by Darren at 01:43 PM

Doping Cases Mark New Era of Olympic Testing

"Before the torch is lit or the first athlete hits the field, new anti-doping regulations are already threatening to take some of the luster away from the 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Athens.

But experts say the publicity surrounding recent doping scandals involving athletes using designer steroids like THG or other banned substances should instead be taken as a sign that officials are serious about eliminating athletes who use performance-enhancing drugs from competition.

"Expect more of these cases, not because that's reflective that the whole world is rotten, but rather that we are now doing the proper job of identifying the minority of athletes who are offenders in this area," says Andrew L. Pipe, MD, who is on his way to Athens as medical advisor to the International Basketball Federation."

Read me at Doping Cases Mark New Era of Olympic Testing

Posted by Darren at 01:43 PM

Cathal Lombard's Case - a Deterrent

"Athletics Ireland has said that the exposure of Irish athlete Cathal Lombard as a drugs cheat will act as a major deterrent to others.

The 28-year-old middle distance runner has admitted he took the banned substance EPO, after testing positive in an out-of-competition test.

"It shows the system is working to an extent," said Athletics Ireland spokesman Pierce O'Callaghan.

"We're very proud of the anti-doping unit and the work they're doing."

The AAI is awaiting a written response from Lombard, which must be provided before 1700 BST on Tuesday.

Lombard, who was training in northern Italy when news of the test result broke, is certain to be removed from the Irish Olympic team."

Read more at Lombard case a 'deterrent'

Posted by Darren at 01:26 PM

Olympics: Tests throw up six more drug cases

"The war against drugs in sport thrust six more athletes into the spotlight on Monday as Athens put the final touches to preparations for the 2004 Olympics.

The attention turned to US sprinter Bernard Williams, two Greek baseball players, a Swiss cyclist, an Irish athlete and a Spanish canoeist.

Williams, a gold medallist at the Sydney Games in the 4x100 meters relay, tested positive for a metabolite of cannabis at a meeting in Spain in June.

He has received a public warning, but remains eligible to run in Athens, the United States Anti-Doping Agency said.

Earlier, Irish 10,000 meters runner Cathal Lombard, 28, was quoted as saying in a newspaper interview, acknowledging a test had found the banned drug EPO (erythropoietin)."

Read more at Olympics: Tests throw up six more drug cases

Posted by Darren at 01:17 PM

August 09, 2004

Greek Americans fail drug test in Athens - Baseball

"Two Americans playing on the Greek Olympic baseball team have failed drug tests and could be banned from the Olympics, Greek assistant coach Dusty Rhodes told The Times-Union on Sunday.

Rhodes, who is head coach at the University of North Florida, said he learned Sunday that a pitcher and an outfielder failed the drug tests that each of his players took upon their arrival in Athens on Thursday. Rhodes refused to identify the names of the players.

The two players, who both play in the minor leagues, were expected to take a second drug test Sunday to compare to the first test, and the results should be known within 24 hours, Rhodes said.

Officials will determine once the second test comes back if the players will be allowed to represent the host country when the Greek team plays its first game in the Athens Olympics on Sunday, Aug. 15, said Rhodes."

Read more at Americans fail drug test in Athens

Posted by Darren at 12:30 PM

Dajka appeal held over

"BANISHED Olympic cyclist Jobie Dajka will have to wait four more days to learn whether he has any chance of riding for Australia in Athens.

Dajka flew into Sydney from Frankfurt this morning for a scheduled 5pm hearing in the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

But the hearing was postponed at the request of both sides less than two hours before it was due to start.

It will now be heard at 6pm (AEST) Monday.

Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) president John Coates took the decision to expel the 22-year-old Dajka from the Olympic team last week after Dajka admitted having lied about his use of syringes in Adelaide last year."

Read more at Dajka appeal held over.

Posted by Darren at 08:38 AM

August 08, 2004

Despite dopey beginning, fairy-tale endings possible

"Theofficial mascots for Athens could just as well be Dopey, Sleepy, Grumpy and, of course, the long-lost dwarf.


For months, that's all we have known about these Athens Summer Olympic Games. Lots of characters. No heroes.

The planning has been dopey. Who builds a roofed swim stadium with no roof?

Construction and security arrangements have been lazy, the entire project rife with executives or workers falling asleep on the job.

These are the Games of difficulties all-around. From roads to Olympic Stadium still not yet completed to bombs going off near police stations and massive blackouts across the city, these are the Games of scares, worries and empty promises.

Anyone who says they're headed to Athens totally confident and unconcerned is probably lying."

Read more at Despite dopey beginning, fairy-tale endings possible

Posted by Darren at 10:44 PM

Human Growth Hormone Takes Center Stage

"With the 2004 Summer Olympics days away and the BALCO doping scandal continuing to unfold, human growth hormone takes center stage in the world of sports ... ... or at least it should.

Steroid guru Dan Duchaine devoted a chapter to human growth hormone in his "Underground Steroid Handbook," considered the bible for performance-enhancing drug use among athletes. Wrote Duchaine:

"Human growth hormone is the most sought-after drug in athletics. Though banned, there is no test for it at athletic events. The use of HGH by athletes has increased and it now has the reputation of being the ultimate anabolic drug an athlete can use."

That was 1989.

There still is no foolproof test.

As the 2004 Summer Olympics approach and the BALCO doping scandal continues to mushroom throughout baseball and track, the substance developed to treat dwarfism in children takes center stage. Or at least it should."

Read more at Growing pains.

Posted by Darren at 10:41 PM

Triathlon boss's business stirs doping worries

"AT A time when Olympic sport in the US has been brought to its knees by a drugs scandal surrounding a Californian nutritional supplements manufacturer, an investigation for Scotland on Sunday reveals that the anti-doping programme for a high-profile sport is overseen by a supplement supplier.

Mark Sisson is general secretary of the International Triathlon Union, world governing body of the sport that made its Olympic debut in Sydney four years ago. But Sissons private status as founder and owner of Primal Nutrition, a Malibu-based nutritional supplement supplier, has already stimulated one warning from the International Olympic Committee. Now failure to implement a proper drug-testing system could threaten triathlons Games status.

Triathlon has held no in-competition tests at three of its past four world championships, and has lost the confidence of several leading figures in the sport.

"We have a strong anti-doping programme in our country, and we have two Olympic medal contenders who do not feel that the playing field is level," said the secretary of a top-ranking national triathlon federation. "Whenever we have asked the ITU what they are doing about testing, they fob us off and say that the World Anti-Doping Agency is looking after it.""
Read more at Triathlon boss's business stirs doping worries.

Posted by Darren at 10:15 PM

Cathal Lombard test positive

"Athletics has been dogged by the drugs issue in recent months
Irish distance runner Cathal Lombard is set to miss the Olympics after testing positive for blood-boosting drug EPO.

Lombard had qualified to compete in the 5,000m and 10,000m in Athens.

"The Irish sports council have come across an EPO positive for Cathal Lombard," said Irish Olympic press attach Jack McGouran.

"He will be given 24 hours to come up with a response and if he doesn't do that he will not be in the Irish Olympic team."

Athletics Ireland said that a further statement would be made following the athlete's formal response to the alleged offence."

Read more at Lombard tests positive

Posted by Darren at 06:14 PM

August 07, 2004

IAAF wants 2 year Ban for Torri Edwards

"The IAAF, track and field's governing body, has ruled that American track star Torri Edwards should not be allowed to compete at the upcoming Olympic Games, according to a report.

The Chicago Tribune is reporting that the IAAF's review panel said Edwards should receive a two-year suspension for using a banned stimulant.

According to a statement from the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, Edward's case is now with the American Arbitration Association. That panel must rule before an official announcement on the sprinter's status is made.

Edwards tested positive for a banned stimulant at a meet in Fort-de-France, Martinique, in April. Under international rules, sanctions for stimulant use range anywhere from a warning to a two-year ban."

Read more at CBC Sports: IAAF wants 2-year ban for Edwards

Posted by Darren at 09:21 AM

August 06, 2004

Athens doping lab ready to break records

Athens doping lab ready to break records
"The success of athletic performances will not just be decided in the Athens Olympic arena but also in a small building on the edge of the Olympics complex.

The Games laboratory is preparing to carry out a record number of tests for banned substances.

Director of the Athens laboratory, Costas Georgakopoulos, said 3,500 samples, or 180 per day, will be analysed with positive results known in 36 hours.

His scientific team has been boosted from eight to 140 for the Olympics.

This number of test represents a 25 percent increase on the number performed during the Sydney 2000 Olympics and the fastest return time for a positive test."

Posted by Darren at 03:53 PM

Dajka appeal held over

"BANISHED Olympic cyclist Jobie Dajka will have to wait four more days to learn whether he has any chance of riding for Australia in Athens.

Dajka flew into Sydney from Frankfurt this morning for a scheduled 5pm hearing in the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

But the hearing was postponed at the request of both sides less than two hours before it was due to start.

It will now be heard at 6pm (AEST) Monday.

Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) president John Coates took the decision to expel the 22-year-old Dajka from the Olympic team last week after Dajka admitted having lied about his use of syringes in Adelaide last year."

Read more at Dajka appeal held over.

Posted by Darren at 03:08 PM

Testing widened in Athens

"More than 3000 drug tests will be carried out in Athens
Olympic chiefs will step up their war on the drug cheats by carrying out blood sampling at all events in Athens.

"It's the first time there will be blood tests across all sports," an International Olympic Committee official confirmed on Thursday.

Blood testing was previously limited to endurance sports, which were screened for the blood-boosting synthetic hormone erythropoietin (EPO)."

Testing widened in Athens

Posted by Darren at 10:33 AM

David Millar suspended for two years

"David Millar will be well rested for his next bike race.

The British Cycling Federation on Wednesday banned him from competition for two years for a doping offence.

Millar, who can appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, also was fined $1,600 US and had his 2003 world-time trial title taken away by an independent disciplinary panel.

French police raided Millar's home in Biarritz, France, in late June as part of a doping investigation into his pro team, Cofidis, and found two used syringes."

Source - Cyclist Millar suspended two years

Posted by Darren at 10:32 AM

August 04, 2004

Calvin Harrison Suspended for Two Years

"Calvin Harrison was suspended for two years for a second doping violation on Monday, rendering him ineligible for the Athens Olympics.

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency said Monday that Harrison was found guilty of using the stimulant modafinil at the U.S. track and field championships in June 2003. His case was heard last week by a three-member arbitration panel, which rejected Harrison's appeal of the test results.

Modafinil is a central nervous system stimulant that was prohibited at the time of the test because it is related to the classes of substances banned under IAAF rules.

Harrison also tested positive for the stimulant pseudoephedrine at the 1993 U.S. junior indoor championships and served a 3-month suspension. As a repeat offender, he got the 2-year ban."

Continue Reading Sprinter Harrison suspended for doping violation.

Posted by Darren at 12:15 AM

August 03, 2004

The Olympics may be coming home but are Greek athletes running away?

"The Olympics may be coming home but are Greek athletes running away?

Four years after Kostas Kenteris won gold, there are still doubts over Greece's drug-testing

The day after Greece had secured a surprise victory in the last Olympic 200 metres final, a headline in the Sydney Morning Herald asked: "Who the Hellas is Kostas Kenteris?"

Four years later, despite the fact that this Air Force sergeant has also found time to add world and European titles and stands ready this month to deliver to the Greek nation the home Olympic victory they crave in the wake of the football team's startling triumph in Euro 2004, that question remains unanswered."

Continue reading The Olympics may be coming home but are Greek athletes running away?.

Posted by Darren at 12:40 PM

August 02, 2004

Athletes Resort to Drugs in Hunt for Gold

"As long as athletes have sought to run faster, jump higher or throw further than their opponents the more unscrupulous have resorted to dubious means.

Greek athletes at the ancient Olympics ate sheeps' testicles to raise their testosterone level. Others combined wine with strychnine, a poison used as a stimulant in small amounts.

Strychnine was still in vogue when the Games were revived in 1896 and the 1904 Olympic marathon gold medallist Thomas Hicks used it in combination with brandy during the race. It took four physicians to revive him after his victory.

Cyclists, in particular, during the late 19th century resorted to stimulants to enhance performance and numb the pain.

Heroin and cocaine were combined in a speedball. A less potent concoction mixed wine with extracts from the coca leaf.

Doping as a term appeared in an English dictionary in 1889 and as a scientific aid to performance in 1935 when German scientists isolated the male sex hormome testosterone, the key ingredient in increasing muscle strength."

Continue reading SI.com - Athletes resort to drugs in hunt for gold.

Posted by Darren at 06:40 PM

Drugs in sports? Proof required

"Let's guard against mistaken innuendo and suspicion for fact in the cases of top athletes

With the Olympics around the corner, we're likely to hear more about various allegations of doping -- the taking of illegal substances to boost performance. The public response ought to be: Quit alleging; either prove it or go away.

Professional athletes undergo a never-ending series of random doping controls. In his second book, cyclist Lance Armstrong tells of getting ready to go to the hospital with his wife for the delivery of twins early one morning in Texas, when a couple of people showed up at the door, announced a random drug control and demanded a urine sample from him first. He could not refuse. Doing so might have got him suspended or banned from his sport.

The goal is admirable -- to keep athletic competition fair and to prevent athletes from harming themselves. But by spreading suspicion everywhere, the anti-doping campaign may be getting worse than the evil it is trying to suppress."

Drugs in sports? Proof required

Posted by Darren at 06:29 PM

Perjury possible in Olympic steroids scandal

"As track and field athletes and a prominent coach point fingers, the BALCO steroids scandal is evolving from a drama about Olympic eligibility into a potentially criminal matter for those who may have lied under oath or to federal agents.

So far, athletes have simply been witnesses in the federal government's case against four men connected with the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative, a California nutritional supplement firm accused of illegally distributing steroids to elite athletes and laundering the profits.

But track and field athletes knew that admitting drug use in the federal case could mean missing the Olympics and facing a possible lifetime ban if the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency learned of the admission. The pressure to protect their eligibility may have led some to risk criminal charges by making false statements. The Olympic Games open in Athens on Aug. 13."

Continue reading Perjury possible in Olympic steroids scandal.

Posted by Darren at 05:42 PM

Australian Swimmers Drug Tested on Arrival

"WHEN the Australian swimming team arrived in Germany for its pre-Olympic training camp, the drug testers were waiting at the hotel.

Australia's two highest-profile swimmers, Ian Thorpe and Grant Hackett, who last week said they didn't believe the Olympic Games would be "clean", were among the first singled out for testing over the weekend.

In all, 12 of the 42 swimmers were required to provide urine samples before they had even unpacked."

Read more at Athletes tested on arrival

Posted by Darren at 12:07 AM

July 31, 2004

New Drugs could Emerge in Athens

"The chemist who unmasked the steroid THG last year says similar drugs might be in circulation, and the Athens Games could spur athletes to use such performance-enhancing substances.

"The Olympics is a time when people risk it all," said Don Catlin, head of the anti-doping lab at UCLA. "I've seen for many, many years how the Olympics brings out new drugs and new techniques."

Catlin said in a conference call Wednesday "hundreds or thousands" of steroids created by drug companies in the 1960s and 1970s could be turned into performance-enhancing substances."

Terry Madden, head of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, said on the conference call "there are designer steroids out there.""

Read more at Sports: Chemist: New drugs may emerge in Athens.

Posted by Darren at 03:43 PM

July 30, 2004

Mickey Grimes - B Sample confirms Drug Use

"Analysis of a backup sample has confirmed the positive drug test for U.S. sprinter Mickey Grimes, who faces a possible lifetime ban for two doping offenses.

The International Association of Athletics Federations said Thursday night that testing of Grimes' B sample also came back positive for a banned steroid.

"The IAAF can confirm Mickey Grimes' B test confirms the A sample," IAAF spokesman Nick Davies said.

Davies said the case is now in the hands of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, which must decide on any sanction."

Read more at IAAF confirms positive B sample test for US sprinter

Posted by Darren at 02:41 PM

Athens Drug Tests On the Mark?

"The 2004 Olympic Games are scheduled to begin in Athens on August 13th. While there has been a lot of concern about whether the facilities and venues will be ready, there is also concern about whether the program to test the participating athletes for drugs will also be up and running.

Summary: The Athens 2004 Doping Control Program will be responsible for delivering a maximum of 3,500 tests at the time of the Olympic Games and Test Events. The negative results will be announced in 24 hours and the positive in 36 hours. These will mostly be urine tests. However, some provision is being made for blood tests for erythopoeietin (EPO) and other substances. The Program will also provide doping control services to the Paralympic Games (approximately 650 tests).

The Program will take into consideration the protection of athletes health and reputation. The samples will be examined in a professional manner to guard the confidentiality of athletes.

What Drugs: What are the drugs that the Doping Control Program is worried about? In addition to the above-mentioned EPO, another no-no is the anabolic steroid THG (tetrahydrogestrinone). A big uncertainty at this point is whether the test for HGH (human growth hormone) will be ready or not. In any case, athletes are being warned that drug testing could still be done retrospectively -- long after the 2004 Olympics are over -- meaning that winners who test positive for certain drugs could end up losing both records and their medals (and reputations)."

Read more at Athens Drug Tests On the Mark? .

Posted by Darren at 12:59 PM

Unnamed Jamaican fails drugs test

An unnamed Jamaican athlete has tested positive for a banned substance and could miss the Athens Olympics.

Jamaican Olympic Association president Mike Fennell said: "During this process the authorities have to keep the matter confidential."

He confirmed, however, that the sample in question was taken at the island's national trials last month.

The athlete has been informed and has five days to respond and request another test on a separate sample.

A preliminary hearing must then be held to determine the athlete's status under the rules of the World Anti-Doping Agency and the International Olympic Committee.

If found in violation, the athlete could be dropped from Jamaica's Olympic squad and face a minimum two-year suspension.

Read more at Jamaican fails drugs test.

Posted by Darren at 11:43 AM

Unnamed Jamaican fails drugs test

An unnamed Jamaican athlete has tested positive for a banned substance and could miss the Athens Olympics.

Jamaican Olympic Association president Mike Fennell said: "During this process the authorities have to keep the matter confidential."

He confirmed, however, that the sample in question was taken at the island's national trials last month.

The athlete has been informed and has five days to respond and request another test on a separate sample.

A preliminary hearing must then be held to determine the athlete's status under the rules of the World Anti-Doping Agency and the International Olympic Committee.

If found in violation, the athlete could be dropped from Jamaica's Olympic squad and face a minimum two-year suspension.

Read more at Jamaican fails drugs test.

Posted by Darren at 11:42 AM

USADA - Confident of Sending Clean Team to Athens

"With 15 days remaining until the 2004 Olympics opening ceremony, U.S. Anti-Doping Agency chief Terry Madden said his agency and the U.S. Olympic Committee have "done everything possible to send a clean team to Athens."

Of the 531 athletes listed on the U.S. Olympic team roster, question marks remain. Sprinters Calvin Harrison, named to the men's relay team, and Torri Edwards, who qualified in the 100 and 200 meters, have doping cases pending, with an outcome expected any day.

The U.S. team's biggest star, Marion Jones, has been investigated by USADA but has not been charged. She made the team in the long jump and could race in relays and possibly the 100 meters depending on the Edwards outcome."

Read more at USADA confident in sending clean team to Athens.

Posted by Darren at 11:41 AM

July 29, 2004

Jobie Dajka gets a 'Please Explain' over Doping Allegations

'The Australian Olympic Committee is to interview cyclist Jobie Dajka after DNA evidence linked him with the doping affair involving team-mate Mark French.

A report from retired judge Robert Anderson said Dajka's DNA profile had been found on nine articles discovered in a needle waste bin in French's room.'

Read more at Dajka faces Athens ban.

Posted by Darren at 10:46 PM

Filip Meirhaeghe Admits EPO Use

'Belgian mountain biking world champion Filip Meirhaeghe has pulled out of the Olympics after admitting testing positive for a banned substance.

The 33-year-old said he was quitting the sport after results showed he had taken the blood-boosting substance EPO.'

Read more at Meirhaeghe admits EPO use.

Posted by Darren at 10:44 PM

Greene shrugs of drug talk

Sprinter Maurice Greene insists the doping scandal that has rocked the US team will not wreck his Athens dream.

"Does it shake me? No. Does it bother me? Yes, because it puts a black mark over something I love - track and field," said the Olympic 100m champion.

"I don't like any bad talk being talked about the sport that I work very hard in, but it doesn't shake me up because I have nothing to worry about.

"I'll be stronger when I walk out in Athens than I have ever been before."

Source: Green shrugs of drug talk

Posted by at 05:48 PM

Anti Doping Ads

"The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency partnered with the White House's Office of National Drug Control Policy on six public service spots breaking today that present the dangers of performance-enhancing drugs to young athletes.

"USADA's ads send the right message at the right time," said John Walters, director of the ONDCP. "As Americans watch the Olympics, they'll be reminded of the importance of playing clean and playing healthy."

The spots feature athletes who will participate in the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, including weightlifter Tara Nott Cunningham and track and field's John Godina."

Read more at USADA, ONDCP Partner on Anti-Doping Ads

Posted by Darren at 03:52 PM

Top US Athletes Not Tested for Doping

"THE US fight against drugs in sport has come under question with revelations the nation's leading athletes including Maurice Greene, Marion Jones and Jana Pittman's main rival Sheena Johnson were not tested by their own drug agency in the first quarter of this year.

Figures on the US Anti-Doping Agency website reveal a startling number of top-level American athletes who were not tested by the agency in the critical pre-season training period of an Olympic year.

While the World Anti-Doping Agency and the International Association of Athletics Federations may have conducted their own tests in and out of competition on Americans, the USADA does most of the testing on Americans."

Read more of this article at - FOX SPORTS: No US test for Jana's rival (July 27, 2004).

Posted by Darren at 01:58 PM

Romanian Olympians Test Positive for Drugs

"Two Romanian Olympians have tested positive for banned drugs but will not be named until results of second samples are known, a Romanian official said on Wednesday. "What I can say is that a Romanian Anti-doping Commission official put the case before the COR Technical Comission," said COR general secretary Dan Popper....

Unnamed sources close to the COR said a rower and a track and field athlete were waiting for the results of second samples after an anti-doping investigation held on July 21 at the Olympic training Center of Snagov, 40 kilometres north of Bucharest."

Source - Two Romanian athletes test positive for drugs.

Posted by Darren at 01:51 PM

Ian Thorpe in Trouble over Drug Claims

"Triple Olympic gold medallist Ian Thorpe's claim that some of the swimmers he will come up against in Athens next month will have taken drugs has landed him in hot water with the sport's governing body, FINA.

In an interview with Channel 7 on Tuesday Thorpe asserted: "It would be naive to think that everyone's going to be clean at the Olympic Games.

"Of course I've swum against doped athletes." The 21-year-old's comments were later echoed by Australian team-mate Grant Hackett.

Thorpe's remarks provoked a stinging response from FINA which said in a statement that it "regretted" the Australian swimming champion's remarks." Read more at Thorpe scolded over Olympic drugs claims.

Posted by Darren at 01:46 PM

Human Growth Hormone Test Ready for Athens

"A preliminary test for human growth hormone (HGH) is ready for the Athens Olympics, British researcher Claire Hartley said on Wednesday.

Anti-doping experts had warned drug cheats that they were confident a test for HGH, believed to be widely used in top class sport, would be ready in time for the August 13-29 Games but Hartley's statement was the first confirmation.

Hartley, from the University of Southampton, told Reuters a laboratory in Munich had devised a blood test that could verify the presence of HGH up to 36 hours after it was administered."

Read more at Human Growth Hormone Test Ready for Athens

Posted by Darren at 12:12 PM

July 28, 2004

More Effort Needed in War Against Drugs

"Reigning Olympic champion Grant Hackett has called on sports governing bodies as well as governments to increase their efforts to eliminate drug cheats from sport.

Speaking on Wednesday as the Australian swimming team prepared to fly out for its pre-Olympic training camp in Germany, Hackett said more had to be done to stamp out the use of drugs, but said recent initiatives were welcome.

He said the decision to retain samples taken during the Olympics until an effective test for human growth hormone (HGH) was discovered was a positive step forward.

"I think it's great that they've made the decision to be able to hold onto the test results and test them at a later date for HGH," he said." Read more at Increased effort needed to stamp out drugs, says Hackett .

Posted by Darren at 10:51 PM

Human Growth Hormone Test Will be Ready for Olympics

"With just three weeks remaining before the start of the Athens Olympics, anti-doping authorities are under enormous pressure to announce a test for human growth hormone.

And today the chairman of the World Anti-Doping Agency, Dick Pound, claimed that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) is pushing to meet the deadline.

But even if a test is announced, scientists and sports physicians are sceptical it will catch anyone and some are now blaming the IOC for failing to act sooner." Read more at Drug test will be ready, says Pound.

Posted by Darren at 11:00 AM

July 27, 2004

Gene Doping - Scientific American

Scientific American has a fascinating look at the new frontier of Cheating in Sport - Gene Doping.

"Gene therapy for restoring muscle lost to age or disease is poised to enter the clinic, but elite athletes are eyeing it to enhance performance Can it be long before gene doping changes the nature of sport?

Athletes will be going to Athens next month to take part in a tradition begun in Greece more than 2,000 years ago. As the world's finest specimens of fitness test the extreme limits of human strength, speed and agility, some of them will probably also engage in a more recent, less inspiring Olympic tradition: using performance-enhancing drugs. Despite repeated scandals, doping has become irresistible to many athletes, if only to keep pace with competitors who are doing it. Where winning is paramount, athletes will seize any opportunity to gain an extra few split seconds of speed or a small boost in endurance.

Sports authorities fear that a new form of doping will be undetectable and thus much less preventable. Treatments that regenerate muscle, increase its strength, and protect it from degradation will soon be entering human clinical trials for muscle-wasting disorders. Among these are therapies that give patients a synthetic gene, which can last for years, producing high amounts of naturally occurring muscle-building chemicals."

Read more at Scientific American: Gene Doping

Posted by Darren at 01:40 PM

Allen Johnson - 'Athletics is Cleaner than Ever'

"Olympic and world champion hurdler Allen Johnson believes "athletics is cleaner than it's ever been," despite widespread allegations of drug use against U.S. track and field athletes.

"I want to go on record saying that it's a misperception that there's a problem with athletics, or track and field as we call it in the United States," Johnson, a four-time world champion and the 1996 Olympic champion in the 110-meter hurdles, said Monday on the eve of the DN Galan meet. "The sport was the dirtiest when nobody was talking about it. Now that everybody is talking about doping, athletics is cleaner than it's ever been."" Source - Champ Hurdler Says Track Cleaner Than Ever

Posted by Darren at 11:30 AM

Stronger Testing is Catching up with US Athletes says John Coates

"Coates said it seemed clear some US athletes had used performance-enhancing drugs at recent Olympics, but the testers were making inroads.

He said there were doubts if anyone would break a track and field world record at Athens, while there had to be concerns about previous performances, especially by US athletes.

"It just hasn't been happening (breaking of world records), so the indications are the Americans in particular were certainly receiving some assistance at recent Olympics," Coates told ABC television.

"We know that they didn't have a government testing agency that was independent of their Olympic committee as we've had now for 10 or 15 years.

"There's certainly been catch-up happening in America now and we should be pleased with that."" - Source - Stronger testing catching up with US athletes, says Aussie Olympic chief.

Posted by Darren at 11:29 AM

Szymon Koecki Banned from Olympics

"Polish weightlifter Szymon Kolecki, a silver medalist at the Sydney Olympics, will miss the Athens Games after testing positive for the anabolic steroid nandrolone.

Kolecki tested positive June 26 and was suspended pending the results of testing on a "B" sample, which were released Monday and confirmed the earlier result.

"Kolecki has to forget about the Olympics," Marek Golab, an official with the Polish Union of Weightlifters, told The Associated Press. He described the absence of Kolecki as "a great loss.""

Source - Polish weightlifter Szymon Kolecki barred from Olympics over steroid test

Posted by Darren at 11:28 AM

July 26, 2004

Sean Eadie leaves for Athens

After an ongoing saga over doping allegations - Australian cyclist Sean Eadie has left for Europe where he will join his Aussie team mates in training for the Olympics.

"Cyclist Sean Eadie could not leave Australia yesterday without a couple of dramas at Sydney Airport. At least they were nothing to do with customs, his manager Kerry Ruffels joked, referring to its involvement in the doping allegation that Eadie beat last week.

Before Eadie, 35, took off for the track team's pre-Olympic camp in Buttgen, Germany, he was delayed for almost an hour while it was decided who would pay a $2000 bill for 32 kilograms of excess baggage. Qantas and Cycling Australia came to an arrangement, Ruffels said.

And then his news conference was brought to an abrupt halt by Ruffels when one question too many was asked about Eadie's rival Ben Kersten.

Before he was cut off, Eadie scotched any chance of taking part in a "ride off" for his spot, as suggested by the Kersten camp. Kersten was called up as a replacement for Eadie after initially missing selection, only to be dropped again when Eadie was cleared of trying to import banned human growth hormones by mail." Read more at Eadie breezes through customs and off to camp - Athens2004 - www.theage.com.au

In related news - its not just Sean Eadie who has left the country - but his family also. They are exhausted by the allegations surrounding their son and have decided to get away from the media frenzy surrounding them.

'Barry and Barbara Eadie are in Sweden with daughter Sherie, 17, the youngest member of the Australian team competing this week at the Global Games, for developmentally delayed athletes.' Source Eadie's Family Flees.

Posted by Darren at 11:58 AM

Gene Doping a Reality

"A new generation of "genetically modified" athletes, whose performance has been improved by the injection of undetectable foreign DNA, could be competing at next month's Olympics, according to a controversial new book.

Dr Andy Miah, a leading British scientist, argues that "gene doping" has now become a practical reality, paving the way for a new wave of Olympic cheats.

He claimed that athletes had already made contact with scientists at the forefront of GM research and even predicted that the eight-second 100 metres could be achievable within a few years....

Gene doping, also undetectable at present, was considered by most experts to be a hypothetical threat. Many believed it would not register on the Olympic radar until the 2008 games in Beijing. As a result, Miah's claims will cause the International Olympic Committee serious concern."

Source - Olympics: Expert tips DNA route to cheating

Posted by Darren at 11:57 AM

Geoff Huegill - On Olympic Doping

This interview with Australian swimmer Geoff Huegill gives an interesting insight into how recent doping allegations focused on Australian Cyclists and Weightlifters have impacted the rest of the Australian Olympic Team.

"Geoff Huegill says the drug controversies surrounding cyclists and weightlifters are unlikely to taint the Australian swimming team's performances at the Athens Olympics.

Australian Olympic great Dawn Fraser last week predicted Australian athletes would be taunted by their rivals in Athens following the recent drug scandals in cycling and weightlifting.

But Huegill was unconcerned about the controversies in other sports tarring the Australian swimmers' performances in Greece.

"You'd like to think that every sport is clean and that everyone is on the same wicket but unfortunately ... it just doesn't happen like that," he said.

Huegill and Olympic gold medal contender Libby Lenton said the culture in swimming was such that any Australian caught taking performance-enhancing drugs would be ostracised."

Read more of this article at The Age: Huegill says swimmers will be okay

Posted by Darren at 11:56 AM

July 25, 2004

Kim Collins warns 'Cheating is Natural'

"World and Commonwealth champion Kim Collins believes it is human nature to try and cheat your way to success, but expects a clean 100 metres final at the Olympics this summer.

The build up to the Athens Games continues to be overshadowed by the subject of drug abuse, with Marion Jones the latest high-profile name to come under the spotlight following claims by her former husband she used a number of illegal substances during the 2000 Olympics in Sydney. The allegations have been strongly denied by the American sprinter.

St Kitts Nevis star Collins, who won his first major title in Manchester two years ago before claiming the world crown in Paris, is one of the favourites for 100m gold in Athens.

And the 28-year-old, who will run at the Norwich Union International in Birmingham later today, conceded you will never be able to stop people from trying to use illegal methods to win medals.

We cant control what people do, said Collins on BBC Radio Five Lives Sportsweek programme.

In the future, with technology, people could create something which is undetectable, maybe have some shoes which are unfair to the competition we cant stop that.

But as the authorities get smarter, so does the criminal.

He added: There is nothing I can do about it. You want to come and compete, have a good clean sport, but there are other things that come into play." Read more at Cheating Is Natural Warns Collins.

Posted by Darren at 09:49 PM

July 24, 2004

Marion Jones Seeks Charges against Ex-Husband

"Lawyers for Olympic champion Marion Jones say her ex-husband CJ Hunter should be prosecuted for lying to federal officials following newspaper reports he told them Jones had used steroids at the 2000 Sydney Games.

"Since CJ Hunter has lied to government officials, he also needs to be investigated, be subjected to a polygraph investigation and prosecuted for lying to federal investigators," her attorney Joseph Burton said.

Several California newspapers reported that former shot putter Hunter, who was himself banned for using steroids and who was divorced from Jones in 2002, made the allegations to investigators probing the BALCO steroids scandal." Read more at Jones seeks charges against ex-husband.

Posted by Darren at 08:24 PM

Alcohol - A Banned Olympic Substance for Triathalon

Here is a hot tip for Triathlon Gold Medal winners - don't celebrate with a beer or you might be stripped of your medal for using a banned substance.

"Triathlon is one of several sports for which alcohol is a banned substance during competitions.

For next month's Olympics in Athens, organisers have deemed that the competition period should extend for the 16-day duration of the Games.

Even after their races, triathlon competitors would be risking a doping violation, and the stripping of medals, if they were caught with traces of alcohol in their bodies.

"Certainly it's something we'll have to watch because the last thing we'd want is somebody caught up in a drugs scandal because they had a few beers afterwards," said Triathlon New Zealand's high-performance manager, Mark Elliott.

The World Anti Doping Agency's prohibited substances list bans alcohol for 13 sports during competition, including archery, wrestling, modern pentathlon and gymnastics.

Quite why alcohol is banned is not clear, although the most likely explanation is safety." Read more at Triathlon: Don't drink and run or your medal's at risk

Posted by Darren at 08:17 PM

July 23, 2004

Bulgarian Olympic Weightlifters Banned

"Bulgarian Olympic weightlifting champion Galabin Boevski was banned for eight years on Saturday for tampering with his urine sample at last year's world championships.

International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) president Tamas Ajan said Boevski's team mates Zlatan Vanev and Georgi Markov were also given 18-month suspensions and would not be able to compete at the Athens Olympic Games.

The three were ruled to have tampered with their tests at the Vancouver world championships in November. The authorities said their urine samples were identical and had come from one person." Read More at Bulgarian weightlifting champ Boevski banned

Posted by Darren at 05:25 PM

Marion Jones Used Drugs - Ex Husband Alledges

'"Track and field superstar Marion Jones was using banned performance-enhancing drugs when she won five medals, three of them gold, at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, her ex-husband has told federal investigators probing the BALCO steroids scandal.

C.J. Hunter, a former shot-put champion and admitted steroid user who was divorced from Jones in 2002, said his ex-wife had had human growth hormone and a steroid-like substance known as "the clear" with her at the Sydney Games. At times, Hunter said, he personally injected Jones with banned substances. He also reported seeing Jones inject herself with drugs at the residence they shared in Australia, according to investigators' memos obtained by The Chronicle." ' Source - Ex-husband told feds Jones used banned substances during 2000 Olympics:

Posted by Darren at 02:10 PM

July 22, 2004

Cathy Freeman - Unsure Aussie Team is Clean

'Cathy Freeman said she could not be certain Australia's Olympic team was drug-free, short of "standing face-to-face with them, looking them in the eye and have them explain to me about what the hell's going on".

The retired Australian sprinter also expressed concern for the well-being of close friend Marion Jones, whom she fears may be suffering emotionally after the BALCO drug scandal in the US.

Speaking at Telstra Stadium yesterday, where her Olympic 400 metres triumph in 2000 was nominated as the venue's greatest moment, Freeman said she feared that in the present drug-tainted sports climate doubts would be raised over her achievements.' Read More at Freeman not sure team is clean.

Posted by Darren at 09:57 AM

July 20, 2004

Torri Edwards and Marion Jones make US Team

Torri Edwards and Marion Jones have been named in the preliminary US Olympics team despite ongoing investigations into doping allegations.

'Edwards, who faces a US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) hearing later on Monday, is set to compete in the 100m and 200m.

Three-time gold medallist Jones, still under scrutiny by USADA despite never failing a doping test, qualified in just one event - the long jump.

The final roster for the American team will be announced on 9 August.' Read More at Edwards named in US squad

Posted by Darren at 11:13 AM

Sean Eadie Cleared for Athens

Australian Olympic Cyclist Sean Eadie has been cleared of drug charges and will be allowed to compete in Athens.

'Sean Eadie, a cycling bronze medalist at the Sydney Games, won his appeal Monday after contesting a 5-year-old doping accusation and was expected to be placed on Australia's Olympic team.

The former world champion had been dropped from the team last week when the Australian Olympic Committee told Cycling Australia it would not allow him to compete in Athens.

"I'm very happy," Eadie said. "I'm looking forward to a relaxing night's sleep, which I haven't had in quite a while."' Read More at Star Aussie cyclist wins appeal.

Posted by Darren at 10:51 AM

July 17, 2004

Athens Olympics - the Growth Hormone Games

The Age: Olympics face an ugly finishing line is an interesting article from an Australian Newspaper on the increased use of Growth Hormones by Athletes.

'For viewers and competitors, each Olympic Games is usually identified by its host city. But, as the use of performance-enhancing drugs has become endemic, scientists have tended to name each Games differently. For them, the Atlanta Games in 1996 were the Steroid Olympics, Sydney 2000 the EPO Olympics. Athens 2004 is being dubbed the Growth Hormone Olympics.

At this year's Games, as at many before, another race will be going on behind the scenes - the race to detect cheats. It used to be easy to spot the drug-takers - male weightlifters with Neanderthal jaws, female shot-putters with macho stubble - and relatively simple to detect the chemical aids that shaped them. But today's drugs, and their physical manifestations, are far more subtle and difficult to deal with.' Read More

Posted by Darren at 01:05 PM

Szymon Kolecki Test Positive for Steroids

Polish weightlifter, Szymon Kolecki has tested positive for steroids. If this test is confirmed he will be stripped of his silver medal from the Sydney Olympics and barred from competition in Athens.

'Szymon Kolecki will undergo further tests in a week, Marek Golab, an official with the Polish Union of Weightlifters, said Friday. The results will determine whether Kolecki will compete at next month's Olympics.

"The way it looks right now, he doesn't stand much of a chance," Golab said.'

Source - Star Polish weightlifter tests positive

Posted by Darren at 11:51 AM

July 16, 2004

Edwards Fails doping Test

THE IAAF confirmed today that world 100 metres champion Torri Edwards has failed a drugs test, placing her participation in this summer�s Olympic Games in doubt.

Edwards tested positive for nikethamide after a meeting in Martinique on April 24 and IAAF spokesman Nick Davies said: "Both Edwards� A and B samples tested positive after the meeting."

The 27-year-old Edwards, considered to be one of the favourites for gold in Athens, will have her US Anti-Doping Agency hearing on Monday, July 19, and if found guilty could face a ban of two years.

BBC News notes that Edwards' positive test means that the every athlete on the podium in that World 200m has now failed a dope test.

Source: Edwards Fails test
Source: Edwards Tests Positive

Posted by at 12:22 AM

July 15, 2004

Shang Shichun - Chinese Weightlifter Banned

'A world champion Chinese women's weightlifter will miss next month's Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece, after she failed a drug test.

Chinese state-run media report the country's weightlifting association banned Shang Shichun from competition for two years and ordered her to pay a $600 fine.' Source - Chinese Weightlifter to Miss Olympics After Failing Drug Test

Posted by Darren at 12:06 PM

July 13, 2004

Olympic Controversy Timeline

This a nice timeline looking at some of the controversy surrounding the games up to this years event.

The movie is 100k and should take no more than 30 seconds to download over a 56k modem.

The application is designed to be played on computers with at least a 400Mhz processor and users with slower machines may experience performance problems.

If it appears to be running slowly try closing down any other applications you may be running.

Souce BBC Controversy timeline

Posted by at 07:53 PM

Michelle Collins Withdraws from US Olympic Trials

'Former world indoor 200m champion Michelle Collins, who faces a lifetime ban for a doping offense, has withdrawn from the U.S. Olympic trials with a leg injury, her coach said Monday.

"She is not running," Olympic men's coach George Williams, who is also Collins's personal coach, told Reuters in a telephone interview.

"She called today from Texas to say she had hurt herself at the warm-up track (at the Olympic trials) and had left," Williams said.

Collins had been considered one of the favourites to make the U.S. team in the women's 400.' Source Collins out of U.S. Olympic trials

Posted by Darren at 09:04 AM

July 11, 2004

Australian Reputation Tarnished with Drug Scandals

'Australian Olympic Committee president John Coates said Saturday doping scandals involving track cyclists and a weightlifter had tarnished Australia's reputation on drugs.

Weightlifter Caroline Pileggi was thrown out of the Athens team on Friday after refusing a drugs test, and former world champion track cyclist Jobie Dajka has had his place put on hold pending two investigations.' Read more at Coates: Scandals tarnish Aussie reputation

Posted by Darren at 03:11 PM

US Reputation On the Line

United States' reputation on the line at Athens Games is an interesting article by Tim Guidera about the reputation of the United States taking a battering with the recent investigations into Drug Allegations of US Athletes.

'A bully got put in its place this week.

It happened quietly, and in court, the way these things often do. And it happened to be an unfortunate turn for the American Olympic movement.

You can't help but feel a little uneasy about how the United States Anti-Doping Agency is going about its business of trying to catch steroid users and keep them from competing in the Athens Games. Given the authority to ban athletes by the United States Olympic Committee, USADA swaggered into Olympictown a while back, vowing to clean up the place by whatever tactics it deemed necessary.' Read More...

Posted by Darren at 02:58 PM

July 10, 2004

Nothing to Fear

Everyone is talking about Drugs at the US Track and Field Olympic Trials - or so we're being led to believe. But this interestesting comment from an ESPN article.

'Still, speaking of the steroid scandal that the U.S. Track and Field Trials will be carrying with it right into its Friday opening in Sacramento, Calif., it fell to Adam Nelson, one of the highest practitioners of his bulky and oft-suspected sport, to cut things down to the skinny.

"If you have nothing to fear," Nelson said of the latest round of testing processes, "then it's not going to bother you one bit."'Source - Can't Outrun Controversy

Posted by Darren at 09:30 AM

July 08, 2004

Australian Cycling Drug Report to be Released

The report into a drug investigation into Australian Cycling will be released as soon as possible says Australian Sports Minister Rod Kemp.

'Retired West Australian Supreme Court Judge Robert Anderson has completed an inquiry into allegations made by cyclist Mark French, who was banned for life from representing Australia after he was found guilty of two charges involving trafficking of glucocorticosteroid.

In secret evidence to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, French implicated five other Olympic cyclists of injecting substances at the Australian Institute of Sport's Del Monte cycling headquarters in Adelaide.

Federal Sports Minister Rod Kemp said lawyers were reviewing privacy and legal issues, but he expected the report would be publicly released before the Olympic Games started in Athens next month.' From - Cycling drugs report to be released

Posted by Darren at 08:04 PM

Australia criticized for Drug Report Secrecy

Australia has been heavily criticized by Dick Pound, World Anti-Doping president and an IOC committee member, for keeping the report from an investigation into drug allegations in Australian Cycling secret.

'Pound said keeping the results of investigations secret is not conducive to public confidence in the process or the sport.

And WADA is threatening to write to federal sports minister Rod Kemp in a bid to force the release of the investigation into alleged drug use by Australian cyclists.' Source - Drugs secrecy warning

Posted by Darren at 12:42 PM

IAAF Will Not Suspend Until Hard Evidence Found

The IAAF will not suspend athletes facing drug allegations until there is hard evidence of failing drug tests. This opens the way for four American Athletes facing life time bans to compete at the Athens Olympics if their hearings do not end before this time.

'USA Track & Field said Tuesday that Tim Montgomery � the 100-meter world-record holder � and five others facing doping charges would be allowed to compete at the U.S. Olympic trials beginning Friday in Sacramento

"We have no problem with that," Gyulai said. "Whether or not they can compete in the trials, we leave it in the hands of USA Track & Field."

Montgomery and sprinters Christye Gaines, Michelle Collins and Alvin Harrison have been notified by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency they face lifetime bans in the BALCO steroid investigation. All are contesting the allegations.

None of the four failed a drug test. USADA is acting based on "non-analytical positives," evidence gathered in the federal probe of the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative.' Source - IAAF won't bar U.S. athletes from Olympics

Posted by Darren at 12:41 PM

July 07, 2004

US Athletic Trials Give Benefit of the Doubt

US athletes currently under investigation for drug charges will be able to compete at the US Olympic Track and Field trials.

'"The law of the United States is quite clear," USATF chief executive officer Craig Masback said. "It says unless someone has received a full due-process hearing and found to be ineligible, they must be allowed to compete."

That means world 100-meter record holder Montgomery, sprinters Chryste Gaines and Michelle Collins, twins Alvin and Calvin Harrison and distance runner Regina Jacobs are free to enter the U.S. trials.

Montgomery and Gaines are entered in the 100, Collins and the two Harrisons in the 400 and Jacobs in the 1,500 at the trials, held at Cal State-Sacramento.'

Source - Innocent until proven guilty being used at U.S. trials

Posted by Darren at 03:09 PM

July 06, 2004

Mike Powell gives US Athletics Predictions

Current World Record Holder in the Long Jump, Mike Powell, has written an interesting column entitled Olympic trials on trial where he takes a look at the lead up to Athens. He covers topics such as the drug controversies surrounding some in the US team but also gives some tips of which up and coming stars to watch out for in track and field events.

The Olympic trials are where athletes begin their road to stardom. Here are several to keep your eye on:

Shawn Crawford and John Capel will challenge Maurice Greene in the 100 meters.

Lauryn Williams and Muna Lee have the talent to challenge Marion Jones in both the 100 meters and the 200 meters.

Sheena Johnson has the second fastest time in the world this year in the 400 meter hurdles.

Larry Wade will give Allen Johnson all the he can handle in the men's 110 meter hurdles.

Alan Webb is starting to live up to the hype that surrounded him in high school and may be the one to put American distance running back on the map.

Shot putter Christian Cantwell comes into the trials with the best throw in the world.'

Posted by Darren at 04:13 PM

Genevieve Jeanson's Struggle Towards Athens

CBC has an interesting article on Canadian Cyclist Genevieve Jeanson's preparation for the Athens Olympics. Jeanson has been surrounded by drug controversies for some time now and it seems that it is taking its toll on her.

'Genevieve Jeanson's signature move is a powerful attack during a difficult patch, which typically leaves the pack struggling through an uphill stretch while the gifted Quebecker climbs effortlessly into a lead.

But for the past year, Jeanson has spent much of her time on the defensive, unable to leave a string of controversies in her wake.

The 22-year-old "Machine from Lachine" has been shelled with questions, accusations and innuendoes since she was barred from racing at last October's world championships in Hamilton, Ont. for an excessively high red blood cell count...' Read More at - Jeanson can�t outrace her skeptics

Posted by Darren at 04:05 PM

July 04, 2004

Nike Predicament over Marion Jones

Nike is in a tough spot as it decides how prominently to place Marion Jones in its advertising whilst she is under investigation for drug violations.

'Jones, who won an unprecedented five track medals at the 2000 Olympics, is under investigation by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, with the Athens Games to open in six weeks.

Nike featured Jones earlier this year as it rolled out its Olympic ad campaign as part of its "Speed" theme to highlight the performances of its top athletes. But the campaign has moved on to Serena Williams, who will be followed by ads featuring Lance Armstrong as he bids for a record sixth straight Tour de France title.' - Source - Jones' situation puts Nike in tough spot

Posted by Darren at 09:37 PM

Australian Cyclists Still under Suspicion

Suspicion continues to hang over the Australian cycling track team in the lead up to the Athens Olympics after parts of the latest drug enquiry were made public.

'Disgraced cyclist Mark French told Channel Nine's 60 Minutes that former world champions Sean Eadie and Shane Kelly had introduced him to banned substance Testicom in Germany last year.

The 19-year-old former junior world champion also named Eadie as the teammate who'd introduced him to injecting legal vitamins at the Australian Institute of Sport base in Adelaide.

But the most potentially damaging information to emerge from the 60 Minutes story on the French affair involved Olympic gold medal hope Jobie Dajka.

60 Minutes revealed sections of former West Australian Supreme Court judge Robert Anderson's report on his investigation into claims made by French against nominated Olympic team riders Kelly, Eadie, Dajka, Graeme Brown and Brett Lancaster.' Source - Fresh cloud over cyclists

Posted by Darren at 09:14 PM

July 03, 2004

Australian Cyclists Cleared

News has just been released that the five cyclists accused by fellow team member Mark French of drug use will be cleared.

'The investigation into allegations made by suspended track sprinter, Mark French, that five other cyclists at the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) used his room for injecting a range of unidentified substances has cleared the riders and is said to be "absolutely damning" of the teenage rider's earlier testimony.

A source close to the investigation told Cyclingnews that the report "Places a very large question-mark over his (French) evidence".

It appears there is nothing to support the exclusion of any of the riders nominated today by Cycling Australia to represent the country at the Athens 2004 Olympic Games.'Source - Anderson report clears named riders

Posted by Darren at 05:05 PM

June 25, 2004

Hackett calls for Smarter Drug Testing

Grant Hackett, Australian Olympic 1500m freestyle champion, has called for
better and more cunning drug tests in the lead up to the Athens Olympics.

'The Olympic 1500m freestyle champion, one of Australia's best hopes for a gold medal in Athens, wants drug testers to become more cunning in their tactics to catch cheats in the lead-up to the Games.

"I think testers have got to be a little bit sly and hide behind the curtain when it comes to drug testing," Hackett said at the opening of a Wall of Fame at Bond University, on the Gold Coast.

"If they tell what is out there then people are going to go off and use something else.

"I think things have got to be done a little bit more strategically when it comes to drug testing so they can start catching things out like they are."' Source - Hackett wants better drug tests

Posted by Darren at 04:21 PM

Claims of Montgomery Confession

There are now reports that Tim Montgomery has told federal grand jury he used human growth hormone.

'The San Francisco Chronicle reports that Montgomery, who has publicly denied any wrongdoing, told a grand jury that he was given weekly doses of growth hormone and "the clear" over eight months ending in mid-2001.

The report said Victor Conte, founder of BALCO labs and charged in a steroid distribution ring, assured Montgomery "the clear" was not an illegal steroid but that Montgomery admitted knowing growth hormone was a banned substance.'

Posted by Darren at 03:55 PM

June 24, 2004

Tim Montgomery Faces Lifetime Ban

US Anti Doping Agency is asking for a lifetime ban for two US Athletes who are facing charges of drug illegal drug usage in the lead up to the Athens Olympics.

'The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency plans to seek a lifetime suspension against 100 metres world record holder Tim Montgomery for alleged drug violations, The Associated Press has learned....

Another track star, Michelle Collins, the 2003 world indoor champion at 200 metres and potential medalist at this summer's Athens Games, also was told USADA will seek to bar her for life, according to her lawyer.

Montgomery is the boyfriend of three-time Olympic champion Marion Jones, and they have a son who is nearly one year old. Collins is a former training partner of Jones, who is being investigated for possible doping by USADA but has not been formally notified she is the target of a probe.'

Source - Sprinter facing lifetime ban

Posted by Darren at 08:50 PM

Australian Cycling Team Drug Enquiry

The Australian government today announced an independent inquiry into doping allegations in the Australian Cycling team in the lead up to this year's Athen's Olympics.

'Australia's build-up to the Athens Olympics in August has been overshadowed by allegations that a group of elite cyclists used a room at the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) as a "shooting gallery" to inject themselves with performance-enhancing drugs. Cycling Australia has said there was no evidence to substantiate the claims but agreed to co-operate with an investigation.'

Source - Aussies take action over doping

Posted by Darren at 07:38 PM

June 20, 2004

Montgomery responds to USADA notice of doping inquiry

Tim Montgomery this week told the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency of his innocence int he face of possible drug charges.

'"The truth will prevail," he said.

His lawyer said Montgomery will continue to fight for the chance "to fulfill his dreams and participate in the 2004 Olympics."

Montgomery, record holder in the 100 meters, is one of four U.S. athletes formally notified on June 7 that the USADA is pursuing possible drug charges against them.'

Source - Montgomery responds to USADA notice of doping inquiry

Posted by Darren at 12:10 PM

June 19, 2004

Olympic Games Issues - Steroids and Security

Monterey Herald reports that the biggest issues for the Olympic Games will be Steroids and Security.

'Just 91 days before the start of the 2004 Summer Games, ongoing questions about security and drug use by American athletes dominated the USOC news conference on Friday that marked the start of the organization's four-day U.S. Olympic team media summit here.'

Posted by Darren at 02:20 PM

Marion Jones is Focused despite Steroids investigations

'MARION JONES believes lingering questions about the BALCO steroids investigation won't take a toll on her track career."All the things going on off the track have made me even more focused," said Jones during a tele-conference today....

Jones said she has never accepted, taken or even been offered any performance-enhancing drugs. She seems tired of having to defend herself.'

Drugs probe 'focuses' Jones

Posted by Darren at 02:15 PM

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