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Tuesday 26, Apr 2016

  Rafael Nadal Sues French Official For Doping Allegation

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Spanish tennis star Rafael Nadal has filed lawsuit on Monday against a former French minister who accused him of doping. Nadal reiterated he has never taken performance enhancing drugs and fed up of accusations made without any evidence.

Nadal, who is widely regarded as the greatest clay-court player in history, said the lawsuit was filed as he needs to defend his integrity and image as an athlete. Nadal remarked a defamation suit was filed in Paris by his lawyers against Roselyne Bachelot, France’s former minister for health and sport, because of her “offensive remarks” last month on French television.

Bachelot said on the TV show Le Grand 8 that the seven-month injury hiatus of Nadal in 2012 was “probably due to a positive doping test.” The ex-minister made the comments in the wake of the failed doping test of Russian tennis player Maria Sharapova. The remarks of Bachelot upset Nadal and outraged Spaniards, including many fellow athletes who were quick to speak up in defense of Nadal. Bachelot was also loudly criticized by the Spanish Olympic Committee and members of the Spanish government.

Toni Nadal, Nadal’s coach and uncle, called Bachelot “an imbecile,” according to Spanish news media. Toni Nadal said his nephew Rafa has passed multiple drug tests every year and is committed to competing in a clean sport. Toni added Rafa’s lawyer is working to take all possible measures and with maximum force and also remarked in this world, instead of proving the guilt of a person, you have to prove your innocence. The coach of Rafael said Rafa goes through many doping controls every year even though he has done nothing and will do nothing wrong.

Alejandro Blanco, the president of Spain’s Olympic committee, remarked he would like Rafael Nadal to be the country’s flag bearer at the Rio de Janeiro Games, in part to make a statement after accusations by Bachelot. Nadal was previously selected as the flag bearer of Spain for the 2012 London Olympics but missed the Games because of an injury.

One of Spain’s biggest sports idols, Nadal is a 14-time Grand Slam champion and the gold medalist at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

In a statement, Rafael Nadal said he intends not only to defend his integrity through this case and his image as an athlete but also the values he has defended his entire career. Nadal added he also wishes to avoid any public figure from making insulting or false allegations against an athlete using the media, without any evidence or foundation and to go unpunished. Nadal, currently ranked world No. 5, also commented that any compensation awarded by the judge if he wins the case will be paid to a non-governmental organization or foundation in France. Nadal also said he asks for total respect regarding the legal procedure just started and would like to express my complete trust in the French justice system that will be judging the legal case and commented he will not be making any further statement about the case.

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Wednesday 26, Feb 2014

  Russian Biathlete Withdraws Over Doping Test

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Russian biathlete withdraws over doping test

One of Russia’s brightest medal hopes in the Sochi Games has pulled out of the event over a positive doping test. Irina Starykh, the athletes, termed the positive result as a “misunderstanding” and withdrew herself from the event.

Irina remarked she will leave the team for “an indefinite period.” Irina wrote in a letter posted on the Russian biathlon program’s website that she finds herself in a difficult situation and think it is necessary to inform about her decision to leave the team for an indefinite period of time. She added it would be unacceptable to be on the team until the end of the proceedings because of the test.

The 26-year-old said she has asked the RBU to exclude her from the team until the end of the investigation and to inform all the concerned organizations about her decision. The athlete has meanwhile asked for the B sample to be tested and said she is extremely sorry that this doping story is linked to her name. Starykh, the sixth-ranked woman in the world, won the sprint competition in the European championships last year.

Recently, the International Biathlon Union remarked that one Lithuanian and two Russian biathletes have tested positive for doping. A statement by the International Biathlon Union revealed that the IBU in accordance with the WADA code therefore provisionally suspended the respective athletes from any IBU competitions until the decision of the anti-doping hearing panel is reached. The IBU however didn’t release the names of the athletes or say whether they were members of their countries’ Olympic teams.

Till a few decades ago, Russia was the frontrunner in biathlon but its team had lost its luster in the last few years. Russia has been overpowered by Norwegians and Germans. The country was still considered by many as a serious competitor for many medals in the Sochi Games. The national and international sports officials have appreciated the efforts of Russian Biathlon Union (RBU) president Mikhail Prokhorov, who is also the owner of the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets, to clean up the sport. Prokhorov has spent heavily for preparing the biathlon team of Russia for the Olympics. Prokhorov has publicly vowed to resign if Russia does not win at least two gold medals. Prokhorov remarked the RBU would issue a detailed comment on the case only after receiving the records about the case from the IBU. He added we have tested 10 times more samples than WADA (world anti-doping agency) did in these years and we have tested our athletes in and after every training camp as it’s a question of principle for us (RBU).

Meanwhile, Anders Besseberg, the IBU president, has remarked he was very pleased with the detection system. He also expressed his satisfaction over the time and money spent on catching cheats and remarked it is clear proof that we are doing a very serious job here. Max Cobb, president of the U.S. Biathlon Association, said if top-ranked athletes are involved, then it really calls into question the whole program and makes you really wonder about the results of the whole team. Cobb went on to add that he thought that with the new leadership that this was getting cleaned up and said it is very disappointing to see this, if it’s all what it appears to be.

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Saturday 05, Oct 2013

  Doping Ban Avoided By Three-Time Olympic Gold Medalist

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Doping Ban Avoided By Three-Time Olympic Gold Medalist

Three-time Olympic gold medalist Veronica Campbell-Brown has received only a public warning from a Jamaican disciplinary panel. The athlete was suspended after returning a positive test for a banned diuretic at the Jamaica International Invitational meet in May.

The Jamaican athlete is now cleared to make a return to competition five months after she returned a positive doping test. Campbell-Brown missed the Jamaica’s national championships and the chance to race at the 2013 world championships in Moscow. The Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association said in a statement that its disciplinary committee recommended that a reprimand without any period of ineligibility would be appropriate. The disciplinary panel ruled that the athlete committed an anti-doping violation but the use of banned substance was for not performance enhancement.

In June this year, a spokesman for the IAAF said the athlete’s case appeared to involve a lesser offense of unintentional use of a banned substance.

Campbell-Brown tested positive for the diuretic Furosemide, a banned substance that is often marketed under the name Lasix. Furosemide is a diuretic which is on the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) banned list because it can be used as a masking agent to conceal the presence of performance enhancing drugs. The athlete and her management team travelled to Canada to have her ‘B’ sample analyzed at the WADA-accredited laboratory in Montreal but she was notified that the second test had confirmed the original adverse finding.

Jamaica’s most decorated female athlete, Campbell-Brown is an online diarist for the International Association of Athletics Federations and a Goodwill Ambassador for UNESCO. In 2000, she became the first female to win the sprint double at the IAAF World Junior Championships and the following year, she was awarded the Austin Sealy Trophy for the most outstanding athlete of the 2001 CARIFTA Games. At the 2004 Athens Olympics, Veronia Campbell-Brown decimated the field in the 200m finals defeating favorite American Allyson Felix to become the first Jamaican and Caribbean National to win in the history of the games to won a sprint Olympic title. She won the silver medal in the 100 m at the 2005 World Championships in Athletics and a silver medal in the 4 x 100 m relay.

The athlete from Jamaica won three medals with a gold in the 100 m, a silver in the 200 m, and a silver in the 4 x 100 m relay at the 2007 World Championships. At the 208 Olympics, Veronica Campbell-Brown defended her Olympic 200 m title in a new personal best time of 21.74 s. In the 4x100m finals, the athletics star teamed up with Aleen Bailey, Tayna Lawrence, and Sherone Simpson to win the women 4x100m. Track and Field News, at the end of the 2008 season, selected her as the top 200 m runner in the world as well as the fourth best in the 100 m (following three other Jamaicans). Campbell-Brown won her first World Indoor 60m Gold medal in a time of 7.00 in 2010 and then went on to get the time of 21.98 (200 m) in New York.

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Tuesday 11, Jun 2013

  Armstrong Calls Di Luca ‘Stupid’ For Positive Test

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Armstrong Calls Di Luca ‘Stupid’ For Positive Test

The first major race of cycling since the end of the Lance Armstrong case was rattled by another high-profile positive doping test with former Giro d’Italia winner Danilo Di Luca testing positive for EPO in a surprise check at his home before this year’s race.

Di Luca risks a lifetime ban since this is his third offence if the same is confirmed in a backup “B” sample. Di Luca said upon leaving his team’s hotel in northern Italy that he was not expecting the test and it was a surprise for him and he is disappointed. Luca added that he will be asking for the backup analysis. The test on Di Luca was carried out April 29, five days before the Giro started.

The positive test of Luca surprised Lance Armstrong who said on twitter, “really Di Luca? Are you that … stupid??”

This is the second doping case from this year’s Giro d’Italia after French rider Sylvain Georges tested positive for the banned stimulant Heptaminol in a urine sample after the seventh stage after which he was immediately withdrawn from the race.

Di Luca has been provisionally suspended by the UCI, the governing body of cycling, pending a hearing with the Italian cycling federation and the Vini Fantini-Selle Italia squad fired the 37-year-old Italian rider. Giro race director Mauro Vegni said Danilo has betrayed cycling once again and added that he is happy he was not a young rider. Vegni also remarked that Danilo belongs to a generation that has navigated through the doping system.

The test result of Di Luca drew a harsh rebuke from Vini Fantini team director Luca Scinto who said Di Luca is an idiot and he never wanted him and added that Di Luca is sick and he needs to be helped. Di Luca signed with Vini Fantini on April 26 after seemingly headed for retirement just a few months ago. Vini Fantini team director and others were against hiring him but sponsors eventually prevailed. Scinto added that the sponsors chose Luca and now they’ve got to take responsibility and the team is now considering the option of suing Di Luca for damaging its image.

This Giro d’Italia saw Di Luca departing in 26th place overall, 33 minutes, 33 seconds behind overall leader Vincenzo Nibali. After the test result was announced, Italian cycling federation president Renato Di Rocco called for the most severe punishment and we can put out there all the prevention instruments we want — both in terms of informing and testing — but we are weaponless when faced with stupidity and Di Luca has especially betrayed the new generation of cyclists that are restoring the credibility and image of Italian cycling.

The cyclist was given a ban of three months after winning the 2007 Giro and saw his name getting embroiled into controversy later in the year for frequent visits to Carlo Santuccione, a physician at the centre of a four-year doping investigation titled Oil for Drugs. Di Luca was stripped of his second-place finish and two stage wins in the 2009 Giro.

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Saturday 23, Aug 2008

  You win some and you lose some on steroid use

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Lyudmila Blonska steroidsA grim fate may await Ukraine’s heptathlon silver medalist Lyudmila Blonska. The hepathlete A sample has tested positive for a banned compound anabolic steroid methyltestosterone and could likely bite the dust should the quagmire she’s in turns for the worse.

The test was carried out at 2 a.m. in the morning after her competition. In the stepped-up anti-doping procedure adopted by the International Olympic Committee in conjunction with the World Anti-Doping Committee, all top five finishers in the Beijing Olympics will be tested for banned compounds like anabolic steroids.

According to the International Association Athletics Federation, the world governing body for athletics, Blonska’s B sample will be tested later on Wednesday. If her second sample yields the same result, Blonska’s could face a lifetime ban since this, if proven guilty, would make her second infringement.

Under the WADA’s rules an athlete could face a lifetime ban if guilty of violating anti-doping rules for the second time. The 30-year-old Ukrainian had just returned to competition in 2005 after she was exposed and banned for using stanozolol in 2003. The lifetime ban could also mean the loss of the silver medal she recently won in Beijing.

A meeting of IOC chiefs will decide on Blonska’s case.

“This athlete has tested positive. Her B sample will be opened later…. and there will be a hearing…,” IAAF President Lamine Diack told reporters.

“We live in a society where people cheat, doping is never in the past. We can’t lower our guard,” Diack said.

When interviewed after her second-place finish on Saturday, Blonska’s shrugged off comments relating to athletes being banned from the Olympics if they have tainted doping records.
“That is all in the past… I made a mistake, but I returned,” Blonska said on Saturday. “Those who say I should be banned should look in the mirror.”

One of her detractors is British athlete Kelly Sotherton who competed against Blonska and finished fifth. “I’m pleased her teammate beat her,” Sotherton said last Saturday. “That makes it bittersweet. I’d have been really upset if she’d won gold. The penalty you should pay if you take drugs is not to compete at the Olympics.”

Blonska’s fellow Ukrainian Nataliaa Dobrysnska took the gold while American Hyleas Fountain won the bronze. Russia’s Tatiana Chernova finished fourth and, if Blonska is disqualified, Chernova would move up from fourth to the bronze.