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Tuesday 02, Aug 2016

  Discord Between IOC And WADA Over Russian Doping Scandal

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The President of the International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach has blamed the World Anti-Doping Agency for mishandling accusations that Russia had executed an elaborate cheating and doping scheme dating back years.

Bach went on to remark that the slow response of WADA had put sports officials in a bind so close to the Summer Olympics. The IOC President also defended decision of the IOC not to ban the entire Russian delegation from the Olympics. Bach remarked the International Olympic Committee was not responsible for the timing of the latest WADA report that came out as late as July 18, just a few weeks before the Rio Olympics. Bach added the IOC is not responsible for the fact that different information which was offered to WADA already a couple of years ago was not followed up and also commented that the IOC is not responsible for the accreditation or supervision of anti-doping laboratories.

In reaction to the comments, World Anti-Doping Agency responded publicly and said it understands that the timing of the McLaren Investigation Report has been destabilizing for a number of organizations as they prepare for the Rio Olympic and Paralympic Games. In a statement, WADA said it wishes to factually clarify that the agency acted immediately on allegations concerning Russia when it had corroborated evidence and the power to do so under the World Anti-Doping Code.

WADA added in the statement that it quickly initiated its Independent Commission when German-based ARD released their first documentary in December 2014. The World Anti-Doping Agency said the Commission, which was chaired by Richard W. Pound, commenced its investigation in January 2015 when WADA acquired its new powers of investigation under the 2015 Code. Richard W. Pound said the Commission did not uncover concrete evidence to the effect that the Russian state was manipulating the doping control process while our Independent Commission’s Report suggested that doping in Russia was likely not restricted to athletics, and that the Russian secret services (FSB) were present within the Sochi and Moscow laboratories. Pound also remarked the Pound Commission leveraged all information that the whistleblowers had provided; and yet, there was no concrete evidence to support State manipulation.

Craig Reedie, WADA President, said WADA had concrete evidence suggesting Russian state involvement that could be investigated by initiating the McLaren Investigation only when CBS 60 Minutes and the New York Times, on 8 and 12 May 2016 respectively, published the allegations from the former director of the Moscow and Sochi laboratories, Dr. Grigory Rodchenkov.

Olivier Niggli, Director General of WADA, said WADA further to the International Olympic Committee’s criteria being outlined on 24 July has facilitated the transfer of relevant information that is available to date, concerning individual athletes, from the McLaren Investigation team to International Federations. Niggli also said it should be noted however that Professor McLaren’s focus thus far was on establishing involvement of the Russian State and not regarding individual athletes that may have benefitted and also commented that WADA will continue supporting anti-doping organizations by providing information as and when it becomes available via McLaren’s ongoing Investigation.

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Friday 06, May 2016

  WADA President Assures Clean Olympics

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World Anti-Doping Agency president Sir Craig Reedie has assured athletes they can trust the drug-testing system despite a recent spate of issues at anti-doping laboratories.

WADA recently suspended accreditation of laboratories in Beijing, Bloemfontein, and Lisbon. News of the suspension of Portuguese centre came on the same day the World Anti-Doping Agency revoked the scandal-hit Moscow laboratory’s accreditation. These four labs combined to do 15 percent of all tests conducted by the anti-doping centers of WADA in 2014. Reedie remarked suspensions of the laboratories were a direct result of WADA’s strengthened laboratory monitoring process noting the high level of interest surrounding the recent suspensions. The 75-year-old Scot added it is for this very reason that clean athletes should have full confidence in the system.

The Beijing, Bloemfontein, and Lisbon laboratories lost their right to test samples because WADA found their failure to either detect banned substances or they reported false positives, often because of outdated equipment.

Reedie added more testing will be done across the board ahead of the Games rather than less despite these closures, and that will be done by individual sports and countries. Testing is actually busier than it’s been before. The WADA President added the system will continue to work properly and, as far as the Olympics are concerned, we have a task force coming back with good reports from Rio de Janeiro about the laboratory getting up to speed there for the Olympics. Reedie also commented that there are sensible procedures in place for the build-up to the Games and during them to ensure that people are properly tested.

The World Anti-Doping Agency president said the suspended laboratories would get assistance from the Montreal-based organization. Reedie said this assistance would be to improve standards of the laboratories so they can make a return to the fight against doping. However, Reedie’s predecessor Dick Pound, has a simpler remedy to get rid of the failing labs and concentrate on a few good ones.

Pound, while speaking at the Sport Resolutions conference in London, said it is not as important as whether a specific country has a lab or not as if it is got one within reasonable reach. The former WADA chief said he would rather than 10 really good labs than 35 of them with 25 that are not very good. The comments of Pound were supported by Richard Ings, the former boss of the Australian Sports Anti-doping Authority, who remarked they need 10-12 mega labs with cutting-edge equipment, great training and, most critically, the analytical ability to detect all doping substances and added that would also give them the scale to significantly push down the cost per test.

The assurance of Reedie that other WADA-accredited laboratories would be able to fill the breach left by the suspended centers in leading Olympic nations such as China and Russia did not convinced Renee Anne Shirley, the ex-head of Jamaica’s Anti-Doping Commission. Renee raised questions on ability of other labs for handling an influx of samples and still managing to maintain rigor and turnaround time. The former head of Jamaica’s Anti-Doping Commission added the costs are already huge, in particular the shipping costs and several of the laboratories still accredited cannot handle some of the more sophisticated tests.

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Monday 13, Jul 2015

  Claudia Pechstein Hits Back At ISU

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Claudia Pechstein, Germany’s most decorated Winter Olympian, has accused the International Skating Union of having a “sick mindset” after she was criticized by the world governing body of skating of starting a campaign to clear her name of doping allegations.

A two-year-ban was imposed in 2009 on Pechstein, who never failed a drug test, due to irregular blood results. The German speed skater has always denied doping accusations and insisted that her blood values may be irregular because of a genetic condition inherited from her father.

On her website, Pechstein said the ISU bosses live in their own world and this is a world in which fair play is just an empty phrase and the rules of law don’t play a role. The five-time Olympic speedskating champion commented that the world federation bosses announced on their website that there was no evidence that she did not dope and added imagine a defendant being sentenced in a court of law as a car thief because there was no evidence he didn’t steal the car. The 43-year-old went on to say that the International Skating Union likes to get facts mixed up, lets relevant things fall by the wayside and employs methods that are familiar to me from mafia films.

On Thursday, the ISU criticized the massive media campaign of Pechstein and said suggested experts who spoke in her defense were not impartial. The ISU said it felt compelled to issue a statement as public opinion was swinging in the favor of Pechstein after it was ruled by a Munich appeals court in January that Claudia Pechstein could go ahead with a lawsuit seeking damages from the governing body. The ISU strongly questioned the validity of a report commissioned by the German National Olympic Committee (DOSB) and reiterated that the ruling had not cleared Pechstein of doping. The ruling in Munich went against decision of the Court of Arbitration for Sport and the Munich ruling allowed the Olympian speed skater to proceed with a lawsuit demanding 4.4 million euros ($4.85 million) in compensation from the world governing body of skating for lost income during her suspension.

In March this year, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) said decision of the German court to allow a lawsuit from Claudia related to her doping ban could upset the entire sporting disciplinary system. Sport’s highest tribunal remarked credibility of sport in general will be threatened if other countries followed suit. In a statement, the CAS said Claudia Pechstein had a fair trial, not only before the CAS Panel but also before the SFT, and the judgment of the SFT, which remains in force, should have settled this matter definitively in 2010. The CAS further added that Claudia Pechstein decided voluntarily to refer her case to CAS and neither challenged the CAS jurisdiction nor the arbitrators comprising the arbitral Panel.

Claudia Pechstein is the most successful all-time Olympic speed skater, male or female and she is the first female Winter Olympian to win medals in five consecutive Olympics (1992–2006). Claudia is the most successful German Winter Olympian of all-time.

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Friday 09, Dec 2011

  Contingency plans prepared by Vancouver bosses

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The International Olympic Committee opened a series of meetings for examining the last-minute preparations for the Vancouver Winter Games and deal with doping and ethics cases and future Olympics.

“We are in a world with uncertain meteorology – we have to adapt to it,” IOC president Jacques Rogge said recently.

“There is a permanent contingency planning for the entire duration of the Games. If there would be too much snow or not enough snow, we will act on that,” Rogge said.

Thursday 17, Mar 2011

  Drug cheats kicked out for drug usage

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Drug cheats kicked out for drug usageFive weightlifters were expelled from the Olympics for failing to clear drug tests, with the authorities bracing themselves for more bans to follow.

Earlier, the International Weightlifting Federation suspended two more weightlifters who failed out-of-competition drugs tests.

Ajan told reporters, “The problem of doping spreads beyond weightlifting and can be centred around some foreign coaches who will go to different countries in order to make model competitors.”

Tuesday 11, Jan 2011

  Andris Reinholds tests positive for nandrolone

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Andris  style=Latvia’s lone rowing competitor, Andris Reinholds, is facing a life ban from the sport after he became the fifth athlete to be kicked out of the Olympics for failing a drug test.

Reinholds, who finished eighth in the single sculls, tested positive for the steroid nandrolone following a random urine test.

The expulsion of Reinhold brings the number of competitors thrown out of the Sydney Games to five.

Tuesday 10, Aug 2010

  Olympic success can be engineered

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Olympic success can be engineeredThe science behind performances of Olympic athletes was revealed at a public discussion on 29 April at the University of Birmingham that was hosted by the Engineering & Technology Board (etb) in partnership with the Royal Institution (Ri).

The public discussions emphasized upon explanation to the science at work behind the Olympics, as per Dr Greg Whyte, Director of Science and Research at the English Institute of Sport.

It seems that the aim of these discussions was on educating sportsmen about the pros and cons of steroids in sports.

Tuesday 11, Aug 2009

  Scientists to make revelations on how Olympic Success can be engineered

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Scientists to make revelations on how Olympic Success can be engineered  During a public discussion on 29 April at the University of Birmingham that was hosted by the Engineering & Technology Board (etb) in partnership with the Royal Institution (Ri), the science behind the performances of Olympic athletes was revealed.

Speakers at the University of Birmingham included Craig Sharp (Professor of Sports Science at Brunel University), James Lamont (Innovation Team Leader, adidas), Dr Greg Whyte (Director of Science and Research at the English Institute of Sport), and Claire Davis (School of Engineering, Birmingham University).

According to Dr Greg Whyte, Director of Science and Research at the English Institute of Sport, the public discussions were aimed at explaining the science at work behind the Olympics.

From News-Medical.Net:

Dr Greg Whyte, Director of Science and Research at the English Institute of Sport, who will lead each event said: “Every four years Olympic records previously thought to be unbeatable are broken and new milestones are reached.”

“These three public discussions will not only explain the science at work behind the Olympics, but also highlight the increasingly critical role science, engineering and technology plays in assisting athlete’s participation, and success, in the world’s greatest sports event.”

Dr Whyte will open the discussion by providing an overview of human performance throughout history in our bid to become swifter, higher and stronger. He will be followed by leading industry experts, who will talk on:

i) The physiological limits of human achievement by looking at the differences between humans and animals in terms of speed and endurance;

ii) The advances in sports equipment technology and examine its impact on human performance; and finally;

iii) The effect of advancements in drug testing technology on athletes’ pursuit of excellence.

Modern day Olympics have always been played under the clouds of steroids. With steroids gaining more popularity than ever, it is high time that sportsmen can be educated about the pros and cons of steroids in sports so that no awkward incident occurs at any of the future Olympics.

Wednesday 06, May 2009

  America Swimmer Positive On Anabolic Steroid

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America Swimmer Positive On Anabolic Steroid  Alex Rodriguez and Roger Clemens are not the only ones creating headlines these days; Jessica Hardy of the US swimming team is now having her share of steroid scandal. United States Anti-Doping Agency has tested Jessica Hardy and was found positive for clenbuterol, a kind of anabolic steroid in July 4 of last year. The United States Anti-Doping Agency did not make the statement until Monday.

The American swimmer was not able to join the 2008 Olympics because of the issue. Jessica Hardy was banned for a year but she will be allowed to compete again in 12 weeks. In the statement made by the United States Anti-Doping Agency, no details were disclosed whether her coach was sanctioned.

Anabolic steroids are popular in the worlds of sports and bodybuilding because of its ability to increase body mass, add extra strength and prolong endurance. Anabolic steroids are considered as a doping drug which is banned and prohibited by sporting bodies such as the Olympics and Major League Baseball.

Clenbuterol, similar to other anabolic steroids available in the market, can be bought from pharmacies only with the presence of a physician’s prescription or written consent. Illegal possession, use and trade of anabolic steroid are punishable by the law.

Saturday 02, May 2009

  Olympics Medalists Positive On A New Kind Of Steroid

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Olympics Medalists Positive On A New Kind Of SteroidEven if the Olympics happened few months ago, news are coming out again because of the controversies that some Olympians are facing now. In the re-test conducted for CERA, few Olympics medalists were found positive on taking endurance-enhancing hormone or steroids.

Some Olympics medalist who were found positive for CERA, the new version of endurance-enhancing hormone are Italian Davide Rebellin – who won a silver medal in cycling, Rashid Ramzi – who won Bahrain’s first gold medal, Greece’s Fani Halkia, Ukraine’s heptathlon silver medalist Lyudmila Blonska, Belarussians Vadim Devyatovsky and Ivan Tikhan, who had finished second and third in the men’s hammer.

The athletes who were found positive with this performance-enhancing hormone like Rashid Ramzi, Davide Rebellin and German cyclist Stefan Schumaker will return their medals and shall face legal sanctions.

There will be more athletes that might be proven positive with steroids or any type of performance-enhancing drugs if the re-test will be done to participants. The re-test results only prove that even Olympics is not free from steroid users, and cheaters.

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