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Friday 24, Oct 2014

  AOC Chief Calls For Urgent Doping Compliance

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AOC Chief Calls For Urgent Doping Compliance

John Coates, President of the Australian Olympic Committee, has urged all sporting bodies to bring their anti-drugs codes up to the world standard or face a risk of not being able to participate in major events.

A Senate committee heard evidence from Coates ahead of parliament debating and passing law for strengthening the powers of the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA) that can bring the anti-doping authority in line with the World Anti-Doping Agency that is all ready to introduce tougher penalties next year.

Following a near two-year consultation process, the revised WADA Code was agreed at the World Conference on Doping in Sport in Johannesburg, South Africa last November. The World Anti-Doping Agency will be doubling bans from two to four years for athletes who make use of banned performance enhancing drugs, including anabolic androgenic steroids. Under the to-be-implemented WADA Code, athletes will also be banned from associating with trainers, sports scientists, and coaches who have been broken anti-doping laws in the past and the period in which investigations can start into past doping offences will be extended by two years, to 10 years.

Australia was lagging behind other sport bodies and countries and the Australian parliament should step up the pace of reform, Coates said. The AOC chief added any athlete involved in a sporting body that was not code compliant would not be accepted into the team and remarked it is critical to deal with anti-doping in a consistent and harmonized way. Coates also said doubling bans for drug cheats is a game-changer that will leave all sports identities with nowhere to hide. The AOC chief is supporting a bill that proposes to strengthen the powers of the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA). In a statement, Coates said the Australian parliament needs to move on from the so-called blackest day in Australian sport referring to the Australian Crime Commission’s report into organized crime and drugs in sport. He added the proposed Bill changes didn’t breach human rights as feared by some athletes.

Coates, who is also a vice-president of the International Olympic Committee, the ASADA act is paramount to the protection of clean athletes and their fundamental right to participate in doping free sport and thus promote health, fairness and equality for athletes. The AOC head also said these amendments are critical to protecting clean athletes and ensuring the Australian Government’s continued commitment to the Code. Coates also remarked the issues here are aligning the legislation under which ASADA operates with the World Anti-Doping Code and giving ASADA the means to get on with its work without interference from any of us involved in Australian sport and added only then will the integrity of ASADA and its work be ensured.

World champion rower Kim Crow, who is also chairperson of the AOC’s Athletes’ Commission, claimed that drug cheats are stealing “the innocence of sport”.  Matthew Dun, former world champion swimmer and Commonwealth Games gold medalist and a member of the International Aquatics Federation Bureau, said he hopes as an ex-athlete that all stakeholders will be able to use the new WADA Code with maximum effect to protect all clean athletes and ensure a level playing field.

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Monday 01, Oct 2012

  UCI Swept Lance Armstrong Positive Drug Test

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UCI Swept Lance Armstrong Positive Drug Test

A British newspaper has reported that the world governing body of cycling swept a positive drug test of the seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong under the rug during the 2001 Tour of Switzerland.

The Sunday Times of London said the upcoming report by the United States Anti-Doping Agency explaining why it stripped Armstrong of seven Tour de France titles and imposed a lifetime ban on the famed cyclist is expected to be sent this week to UCI, cycling’s governing body. The newspaper cited sources familiar with the upcoming report by the USADA. According to officials of the anti-doping agency, the report will be released no later than October 15.

This report would also include affidavits from two riders who said Armstrong told them he had a positive test that was swept under the rug at the 2001 Tour of Switzerland. It would also have affidavit from another who has said Lance Armstrong told him that he can use his influence with the UCI to circumvent the anti-doping laws of cycling.

The explosive report by the USADA is believed be on the same lines as the steroid report submitted by Sen. George Mitchell prepared on behalf of Major League Baseball as it would be presenting evidence of widespread doping in cycling. However, this report is expected to go into greater detail (unlike the Mitchell report) about how team trainers, doctors, and other officials are playing a role in the performance enhancing drug scandal of cycling.

This report would provide details on the doping conspiracy that underpinned the success of US Postal Service, the world’s top cycling team, and its leader Armstrong, from 1999 to 2004. The report is expected to have testimony by former teammates of Lance Armstrong: Floyd Landis, Tyler Hamilton, and Frankie Andreu, all of whom have accused the cyclist of doping.

The U.S. Department of Justice official Mike Pugliese sat in on interviews of the USADA with witnesses and compared it to interview answers during a Justice Department investigation of Armstrong that was abruptly dropped in February, according to the writer of the story, David Walsh.

Former Sunday Times journalist Paul Kimmage is being sued by the UCI after he suggested that Lance Armstrong was protected, an action that has outraged fans of cycling.

The report also suggested that the governing body of cycling ignored several opportunities to investigate U.S. Postal, including one in the year 2003 when a team assistant named Emma O’Reilly said she was aware of many doping incidents of Armstrong and the team and allegations of cortisone by the cyclist that caused him to test positive during the first week of the Tour de France. The newspaper also reported that the US Anti-doping Agency cites an affidavit from a rider who says it was known in the team that Lance Armstrong used long-acting synthetic corticosteroid. According to this rider, Armstrong asked O’Reilly for make-up so the scar could be concealed that was caused by injections of EPO just before the 1999 Tour.

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