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Archive for  April 2014

Tuesday 29, Apr 2014

Second Latvian Hockey Player Failed Anti-Doping Test

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Second Latvian Hockey Player Failed Anti-Doping Test

The Latvian men’s hockey team, which reached the quarterfinals before falling 2-1 to Canada during the Sochi Games, has been embarrassed again. This was after the International Olympic Committee (IOC) reported that Latvia’s Ralfs Freibergs, a defenseman who played in five games, had his A and B samples test positive for an anabolic androgenic steroid.

Freibergs was tested immediately after the elimination of Latvia by Canada on February 19. It was determined by an IOC hearing on April 4 that he should be punished. Freibergs, who plays collegiately at Bowling Green, will have his eighth place diploma withdrawn according to the IOC ruling. Freibergs may face a ban of two years for first-time offenders and is considered “excluded” from the Sochi Games.

Freibergs was requested on 20 February 2014, at around 00:15 a.m. immediately after the completion of his participation in the Men’s Play-offs Quarterfinals – Canada versus Latvia match, to provide a urine sample for a doping control. Dr. Richard Budgett (the “IOC Medical Director”), as representative of the Chairman of the IOC Medical Commission, pursuant to Article 6.2.1 of the IOC Anti-Doping Rules Applicable to the XXII Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, in 2014 (the “Rules”), was informed on 22 February 2014 by the Head of the WADA Accredited Laboratory in Sochi, of an adverse analytical finding on the A sample of the above-noted urine.

The analytical report of the laboratory analysis of the A sample, issued by the WADA Accredited Laboratory in Sochi, dated 22 February 2014, indicated the presence of dehydrochloromethyl-testosterone metabolite 18-nor-17b-hydroxymethyl-17a-methyl-4-chloro-5b-androst-13-en-3a-ol (a prohibited substance that belongs to the category of non-specified exogenous Anabolic Androgenic Steroid, in Class S1). The analytical report of the laboratory analysis of the B sample, prepared by the Head of the WADA Accredited Laboratory in Sochi, confirmed the presence of the prohibited substance dehydrochloromethyl-testosterone metabolite 18-nor-17b-hydroxymethyl-17a-methyl-4-chloro-5b-androst-13-en-3a-ol in the B sample.

This is the second instance of a Lativa hockey team member failing anti-doping tests. On February 22, the IOC announced that Vitalijs Pavlovs had tested positive for the stimulant Methylhexaneamine. The hockey player claimed the stimulant was in food supplements recommended by the doctor of his KHL team, Dinamo Rig. His defense was not accepted by the IOC and the International Olympic Committee outlined the list of sanctions against Pavlovs. He was immediately disqualified from the quarterfinal match versus Canada.

The 24-year-old Pavlovs tested positive for Methylhexaneamine (dimethylpentylamine). It was announced by the IOC Disciplinary Commission that the Athlete shall be excluded from the XXII Olympic Winter Games in Sochi in 2014, and shall have his Olympic identity and accreditation card immediately cancelled. The analytical report of the laboratory analysis of the A sample, issued by the WADA Accredited Laboratory in Sochi, dated 21 February 2014, indicated the presence of Methylhexaneamine (dimethylpentylamine).The Athlete requested the analysis of the B sample, which occurred on Saturday 22 February 2014 at 4:00 p.m., at the WADA Accredited Laboratory in Sochi, in the presence of the Athlete’s representative, Ms. Liga Cirule. The analytical report of the laboratory analysis of the B sample, prepared by the Head of the WADA Accredited Laboratory in Sochi, was communicated to the IOC. Such report confirmed the presence of the prohibited substance Methylhexaneamine (dimethylpentylamine) in the B sample.

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Sunday 27, Apr 2014

Rousey Is ‘New Chuck Liddell,’ Says Dana White

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Rousey Is ‘New Chuck Liddell,’ Says Dana White

Dana White, the President of the mixed martial arts organization Ultimate Fighting Championship, has remarked MMA fighter Ronda Jean Rousey is his new Chuck Liddell, “The Iceman.”

White remarked Rousey wanted to fight Alexis Davis at UFC 175 for the July 5 fight card (at Las Vegas’ Mandalay Bay Events Center) as she wanted to get back in the octagon as soon as possible.

Liddlle is highly admired in the MMA circles and is best known for testing his skills against anyone at any time and White remarked Ronda Jean Rousey owns that same mindset. White added she wants to fight, so she’ll fight back-to-back, she’ll fight on 24 hours’ notice – she’s the new Chuck Liddell.

Termed as “the biggest star in UFC history” by UFC president Dana White, the women’s bantamweight champion recently received flak for her comments against Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino.

Rousey accused Justino of being a user of anabolic androgenic steroids for long and said she is not a woman anymore. Condemning her remarks, Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney said he would never want to verbalize disrespect for a fighter but to characterize her as the biggest star in MMA is a little disrespectful to a lot of fighters who have put in year after year after year in this game. Rebney added if Ronda fights ‘Cyborg’ and she could beat ‘Cyborg,’ he thinks that would be a big statement as to where she is in the game but to characterize her as the biggest star is a bit disingenuous but he thinks there are a lot of huge stars in MMA.

Ronda Jean Rousey is the first and current UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion and is undefeated Rousey became the first American woman to bag an Olympic medal in Judo at the Summer Olympics in Beijing in 2008. She trains under Gokor Chivichyan of the Hayastan MMA Academy and enlisted former undefeated boxing and kickboxing champion Lucia Rijker in July 2012 as striking coach. According to MMARising and other publications, she is the consensus #1 pound-for-pound female MMA fighter in the world and is the #10 pound-for-pound fighter in the UFC s of March 10, 2014. Rousey will soon hit the movie stage with her roles in The Expendables 3 and Fast & Furious 7.

In another development, UFC commentator Joe Rogan has remarked Ronda Rousey would win if there is a fight between Rousey and undefeated boxing superstar Floyd Mayweather Jr. Rogan remarked it is all about how much time Floyd has to prepare, because he will really have to work on his takedown defense and that would be the big thing. The commentator said if Ronda got a clinch on him, it’s not just about worrying about being taken down to the ground, it’s worrying about knees to the body and went on to add that it is worrying about her manipulating his body in ways that he doesn’t understand. Rogan remarked Mayweather would need at least six months of training to be able to have a chance with Rousey.

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Friday 25, Apr 2014

Ronda Rousey Unloads On Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino

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Ronda rousey unloads on cris ‘cyborg’ justino

Ronda Jean Rousey, the first and current UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion, has blistered Cris “Cyborg” Justino for her steroid use. Rousey said use of steroids is criminal and urged fighters to be banned from competition after one failed test.

 Rousey also remarked she is turned off by what she termed as long-term use of performance enhancing drugs by Justino who admitted to using the anabolic steroid Stanozolol prior to her December 17, 2011, bout against Hiroko Yamanak to help her make weight. Justino however remarked Stanozolol use came as a result of bad advice. Last month, she said that she always had muscles for as long as she remembers and it is how she was born. She added Stanozolol (Winstrol) use was for the weight and it was a mistake, but it wasn’t to cheat and get muscles.

The last Strikeforce Women’s Bantamweight Champion, Rousey raved about jiu-jitsu and Muay Thai kickboxing skills of Alexis Davis who she will be fight for a July 5 title defense in Las Vegas. Rousey remarked she thinks the reason why people don’t know her so well has nothing to do with her actual talent and more to do with the way she has chosen to promote her fights.

Ronda Rousey also said it would be a dream to compete against Gina Carano and had words of praise for the skills of former boxing champion Holly Holm. Rousey said he totally adores Gina and a fight against her would be a privilege and an honor. Rousey remarked she will be honored to fight a competitor like Gina, who is an example of what real respect and honor is in the cage. She also said Holm, the former boxing champion, is fantastic and she thinks UFC fans would love her.

Rousey said she does not buy Justino’s argument and remarked she thought penalties for using performance enhancing drugs should be much stiffer than they are. Rousey said penalties should be stronger due to the potential consequences of steroid usage and added she was in favor of random, unannounced testing as is done during Olympic competition.

Justino was suspended by California Commission for one year and fined her $2,500. Ronda Jean Rousey came heavily on Justino and remarked this girl has been on steroids for so long and has been injecting herself for so long that she’s not even a woman anymore. Rousey added she’s an ‘it’ and this is not good for the women’s division. Rousey went on to remark she could ruin the whole sport and even though it’s a fight a lot of people want to see, even if she beats the living crap out of her, it won’t be good for the sport because then she’d still be in the UFC.

Americana MMA owner Peter Giannoulis said Rousey should be suspended or fined for her comments about Cyborg. Cyborg is making efforts to make it to the 135-pound weight class of Rousey so she can enter the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and challenge her.

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Wednesday 23, Apr 2014

Six-Fold Increase In Count Of Steroid Users, Says Charity

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Six fold increase in count of steroid users, says charity

The number of people using anabolic androgenic steroids in the UK has increased by a whopping 645 percent in just three years, according to figures from the charity Crime Reduction Initiatives (CRI) as seen by its needle exchanges in England. On the other hand, it is suggested by official figures from the Home Office that anabolic steroids were used by around 59,000 adults in 2012-13 and the use has increased in the last few years but this increase is not six-fold.

According to Crime Reduction Initiatives, the number of users (administering steroids) visiting its needle exchanges went up from 290 to 2,161 between 2010 and 2013, an increase of 645 percent. Needle and syringe exchange programs offer sterile equipment to users of drugs, including anabolic steroids, to help prevent the spread of viruses and infections. However, this does not suggest that the count of anabolic steroid users in the United Kingdom has increased by the same proportion as this could also indicate that a part of the increase in visitors is due to the increased availability of the service rather than an increase in the underlying demand and because of greater awareness of the risks. Home Office figures revealed that 0.2 percent of 16- to 59-year-olds reported using anabolic androgenic steroids in 2012-13, which was an increase from 0.1 percent a decade earlier.

In another development, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence [NICE] has said that providers of health services should offer specialist services for rapidly increasing numbers of steroid users. It was also remarked that needles should be provided to steroid users under the age of 18 years. This comment was made by NICE after reports surfaced of children as young as 15 injecting the drugs for muscle building.

More and more young people were coming for needles to inject image- and performance-enhancing drugs, said David Rourke, from the CRI’s Arundel Street Project needle and syringe program in Sheffield. He said we run a weekly clinic for steroid users but we have people coming through the door on a daily basis, with at least seven new clients a week.

Joe Kean, a frontline worker at drug treatment charity The Bridge Project, remarked the new guidance would bring more clarity. He also remarked he had seen local gyms with dedicated injecting rooms and gyms where waste bins were filled with piles of needles. Meanwhile, Professor Mike Kelly, director of the NICE Centre for Public Health said that clinics today are experiencing a completely different group of people injecting drugs. He added they do not see themselves as ‘drug addicts’ and they consider themselves to be fit and healthy people who take pride in their appearance. Kelly added we’ve seen an increase in the use of image and performance enhancing drugs such as anabolic steroids since we last published our guideline on needle and syringe programs in 2009 and added we have also heard anecdotal evidence that more teenagers are injecting these image and performance enhancing drugs too and we are updating our guideline to make sure all of these groups of people are considered in the planning and delivery of needle and syringe programs.

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Monday 21, Apr 2014

Operations Of JADCO Questioned By CAS

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Operations Of JADCO Questioned By CAS

Jamaican anti-doping officials have been blasted by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) for mishandling of a drug test by Veronica Campbell-Brown. The Jamaican sprinter was banned for two years but appealed to the CAS against the doping ban.

In a scathing 58-page report explaining the decision to uphold the appeal of the three-time Olympic gold medalist, the CAS cited errors in the collection and handling of the urine sample of Campbell-Brown last year that may have resulted in its contamination. CAS said the evidence before the panel in this case establishes that the JAAA (Jamaica Athletic Administrative Association) has persistently failed to comply with the mandatory partial testing. It was added that systematic and knowing failure, for which no reasonable explanation has been advanced, is deplorable and gives rise to the most serious concerns about the overall integrity of the JAAA’s anti-doping processes, as exemplified in this case by the flaws in JADCO’s (Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission) sample collection and its documentation.

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) expressed confidence that the errors would not be repeated in the future. The anti-doping agency concurred that mistakes were made in the case of Campbell-Brown that were fundamental to the integrity of the testing process. In a statement, WADA said we responded to past concerns in Jamaica by initiating a partnership with the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport (CCES) to mentor and assist JADCO in developing their anti-doping programs and WADA as a result is confident that such mistakes will not be repeated again.

Campbell-Brown on May 4 returned a positive test for hydrochlorothiazide at the Jamaica International Invitational meeting in Kingston and in October was given a public reprimand by a JAAA disciplinary panel. However, a doping review board of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) recommended a ban of two years after which Campbell-Brown appealed the ban. The sprinter’s lawyers argued that international standards were violated during her sample collection and this resulted in compromising the integrity of the samples.

Meanwhile, Jamaican athletics federation president Warren Blake has remarked the problems were now in the past. In late 2013, the anti-doping efforts of Jamaica underwent a big overhaul with the entire JADCO board resigning and the appointment of a new executive director. Blake said this speaks to the situation that existed last year and the question was the use of partial sample kits and added his understanding is that JADCO does in fact have partial sample kits now. Blake also questioned as to why the Jamaica Athletic Administrative Association was mentioned in the report when the testing was done by Jamaican Anti-Doping Commission.

Recently, elite coach Stephen Francis called for Jamaican officials to disband their anti-doping agency and contract testing to agencies in other countries that was disagreed by Blake and Natalie Neita-Headley, the Jamaican minister responsible for sports. Blake remarked many things have changed with JADCO and he is not going to be supporting taking our testing out of our country and giving it to strangers while Neita-Headley said we need to have a anti-doping commission that works and that’s what we are working at with a sporting program like ours and with the success we have attained.

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Saturday 19, Apr 2014

Multi-billion Dollar Baseball Industry Largely Behind Steroid Abuse By MLB Players

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Multi billion dollar baseball industry largely behind steroid abuse by mlb players

A newly published research paper has revealed that the widespread use of illegal anabolic steroids among Major League Baseball players has been fueled by an “economy of bodily management”, exploding television revenues, and the free agent market.

Sarah Rose, a labor and disability historian, said commentators have obscured the more salient issue by attacking morality of individual ball players. The UT Arlington assistant professor said Baseball is representative of the fact that Americans increasingly live in an age of biotechnology in which bodily modification for profit has become the norm and, often, an unstated job requirement. Rose, director of the University’s Minor in Disability Studies program, is the co-author of a new article “Bionic Ballplayers: Risk, Profit, and the Body as Commodity, 1964-2007” that was published in the journal LABOR: Studies in Working-Class History of the Americas. Her co-author is Joshua A. T. Salzmann, assistant professor of history at Northeastern Illinois University.

During the research, it was found by the researchers that players’ average salaries soared to $16,000 in the mid-1960s while the league minimum salary remained at $6,000 between 1954 and 1967. It was revealed that teams paid these increasing salaries out of funds attained through television revenue. Revenues from television contracts rose between 1964 and 1979 from $21 million to $54 million. During this time, owners and players investigated new ways for preserving and eventually enhancing players’ bodies.

Rose and Salzmann interviewed notable figures such as Bob Costas and Nolan Ryan along with a wide array of trainers, general managers, baseball players, team physicians, agents, and union officials with careers dating back to the mid-1960s. The article emphasizes on Sandy Koufax, Tommy John, Frank Jobe, and José Canseco (who admitted to making use of anabolic androgenic steroids during their playing career in his tell-all book). Canseco had claimed that the large majority of Major League Baseball players used anabolic steroids.

Rose and Salzmann concluded in the paper that enticed by the prospect of riches, players and teams harnessed fitness training, reconstructive surgery, biomechanical analysis and performance-enhancing drugs to reduce wear and tear on players’ bodies and, ultimately, radically alter them for profit. They added this interplay between economic incentives and medicine created what we call bionic ballplayers: bigger, stronger, and at times, more fragile than their predecessors.

It was suggested by the study that the question raised by anabolic steroids is not individual morality but the morality produced by a political economy of labor that calls for both services and body parts rendered. Rose questioned as to why has professional baseball players’ steroid use been characterized as an immoral illegitimate bodily enhancement, when other medical interventions, such as ‘Tommy John’ elbow reconstruction surgery, have been celebrated as career-saving cures. Rose added that while admittedly different, we show that both bodily interventions arose out of the same dramatic shifts in the business of baseball — shifts that drove the medicalization of the game and players’ bodies.

Beth Wright, dean of the UT Arlington College of Liberal Arts, applauded Rose and said Dr. Rose is making important contributions to the way we understand the history of disability and athletics and the pressure that the sports industry places on its talent.

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Thursday 17, Apr 2014

Armstrong Finally Reveals Names Under Oath

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Armstrong Finally Reveals Names Under Oath

Lance Armstrong has revealed names and offered additional “new” details about his doping practices. The now-banned cyclist who won seven consecutive Tour de France titles was compelled to make responses to questions under oath in a lawsuit.

The answers by Armstrong came last November but were made public now after being filed in federal court by an attorney for former cycling teammate Floyd Landis as part of another lawsuit. Lance Armstrong revealed that he received performance enhancing drugs during his cycling career from trainer Pepi Marti, Dr. Pedro Celaya, Dr. Luis Garcia del Moral, and Dr. Michele Ferrari.

He also said masseuse Emma O’Reilly, bike mechanic Julien de Vriese, and motorbike courier Philippe Maire delivered the drugs that he used to cheat in races. It was remarked by Lance Armstrong that Johan Bruyneel participated in or assisted with his use of performance enhancing drugs, and knew of that use through their conversations and acts and he added he usually paid for the substances he used. It was also revealed during Landis lawsuit that Armstrong would typically supervise his own use of PEDs, but on certain occasions, the use of PEDs was supervised by Dr. Celaya, Dr. del Moral, or Dr. Ferrari.

In January 2013, Armstrong admitted to using performance enhancing drugs to stay on top of cycling. In a televised interview with Oprah Winfrey, the disgraced cyclist said he had doped during all of his Tour de France victories. However, the final nail in his “coffin” was made when he had to provide answers under oath in a lawsuit filed against him by Acceptance Insurance that sought to recover $3 million from him for bonuses paid to him for winning the Tour de France from 1999 to 2001. The cyclist reached an undisclosed settlement to end it and cancel the deposition a day before he was scheduled to give a deposition in that case. Though he managed to avoid that case, his remarks under oath were filed by attorneys for Floyd Landis, former cycling teammate, as an exhibit in a separate federal whistleblower lawsuit of Landis against Armstrong.

Armstrong also said he believed that banking hotshot Thom Weisel knew of doping on the USPS team. Bay Area banking hotshot Weisel, one of Lance Armstrong’s most important patrons, was implicated by the cyclist in a November 12 document related to a Texas lawsuit filed against him by an insurance company. Armstrong said Weisel, on information and belief, was aware of doping by the USPS team and in professional cycling in general. The accusations were denied by Weisel. Interestingly, Weisel donated generously to the legal defense fund of Floyd Landis when he launched a strident legal attack on anti-doping authorities after testing positive for exogenous testosterone at the Tour de France.

The cyclist also said he believed his cycling team’s general manager, Mark Gorski, was aware of doping by the USPS team while Armstrong told former cyclist Chris Carmichael in 1995 of his use of performance enhancing drugs. Carmichael, a member of the 1984 Olympic road team, said he never saw Armstrong using any banned substances and seeing is believing in his eyes.

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Tuesday 15, Apr 2014

Jamaican Sprinter Asafa Powell Banned

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Jamaican Sprinter Asafa Powell Banned

Former 100-meter world record holder Asafa Powell has been banned by a Jamaican disciplinary panel for a period of 18 months. The veteran sprinter was banned for athletics after he tested positive for a banned stimulant, Oxilofrine, last June.

Lennox Gayle, the head of the three-member panel of the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission, said the decision to ban Powell was unanimous after they examined the “voluminous nature of the evidence.” Gayle said Powell was found to be negligent, and he was at fault and the disciplinary panel would be issuing a written statement in a month to explain the decision.

The backdated ban on Powell starts from the date of his sample collection on June 21, 2013 during national trials for the world championships and he would be eligible to return to competition on December 20, about a month after he turns 32.

Powell issued a statement through his publicist and said his defense team will appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport while describing the ruling as not only unfair, it is patently unjust. Powell said sanctions for a stimulant and this kind of infraction usually range from public warnings to a ban of three months, six months in the most extreme cases. The sprinter had blamed his newly-hired trainer, Canadian physiotherapist Christopher Xuereb, who offered supplements to Powell and Sherone Simpson, a three-time Olympic medalist who also tested positive for the same stimulant at the national trials in June. Simpson was also banned by the Jamaican anti-doping disciplinary panel for 18 months while a two-year ban was imposed on Jamaican Olympic discus thrower Allison Randall for using a prohibited diuretic. Both Powell and Simpson will miss the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in July.

In a statement, Powell said he have never knowingly taken any banned substances, he did all the necessary checks before taking Epiphany D1 and it is his hope that the CAS will prove to be a more open and fair avenue for the review of all the facts in his case.

Powell added he started using the supplements, including one called “Epiphany D1″ that laboratory tests later showed to contain Oxilofrine. The athlete said he and a friend researched about the supplement for up to six hours online and found no prohibited substances. On the other hand, Xuereb said he never gave any performance enhancing to Powell or Simpson and he only bought major brand vitamins. In July last year, Xuereb claimed both athletes were looking for a scapegoat. Xuereb once worked at the Toronto clinic operated by Anthony Galea, a sports physician who pleaded guilty of bringing unapproved and mislabeled drugs into the United States for house calls.

Powell’s coach, Stephen Francis, urged the Jamaican Prime Minister to disband the country’s anti-doping organization and sub-contract the testing procedures to a credible overseas testing agency. Francis remarked they need to sub-contract it to England or Germany or whoever it is who can carry it out properly because obviously we in Jamaica can’t do this thing properly and it is embarrassment after embarrassment after embarrassment.

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Sunday 13, Apr 2014

Bill Would End SeaWorld Killer Whale Shows

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Bill Would End SeaWorld Killer Whale Shows

A proposed California bill would force SeaWorld San Diego from using killer whales in its iconic shows and for releasing them from their tanks. This was after a documentary “Blackfish” criticized the animal welfare practices of the marine park.

The California state assembly had its first committee hearing on April 8 on AB2140 by Richard Bloom, D-Santa Monica. This hearing is pitted against animal welfare activists against a staple of the tourism industry of San Diego. Assemblyman Richard Bloom criticized the negative aspects of captive orcas at Sea World. The documentary has led to growing public outrage and many celebrities have already canceled appearances at the park.

If the Legislature approved Bloom’s bill and the governor signed it, the 10 killer whales of SeaWorld San Diego would be moved into a larger sea pen and could not be bred. This ban would also impose a ban on the import and export of the animals and many activists are now thinking of bringing bills of similar nature to Florida and Texas where SeaWorld has parks.

Naomi Rose, a marine mammal scientist with the Animal Welfare Institute, the bill’s sponsor, said they are too large, too intelligent, too socially complex and too far-ranging to be adequately cared for in captivity. Rose said the theme park can change how it handles captive animals and still display its whales for decades. She added we are not talking about shutting down SeaWorld but we are talking about transforming them.

John Reilly, president of SeaWorld San Diego Park, said the 2013 documentary “Blackfish” distorted the facts to favor an anti-captivity agenda. Reilly remarked that argument is not based on credible peer-reviewed science and went on to say that it is based on emotion and a propaganda film. Officials of SeaWorld have said their killer whales lead quality lives and that captive animals allow researchers to study and improve conservation for wild orcas. SeaWorld San Diego Park President Reilly said killer whales are a part of the experience of every San Diego Sea World visitor and the arks draw millions of visitors a year. Reilly added the film got wide distribution so we are not surprised that people were misled by the falsehoods and tricks in the movie and added we know that when they learn the facts, people support SeaWorld.

David Koontz, SeaWorld San Diego’s director of communications, while referring to the iconic animal of the park said Shamu (an orca) is synonymous with SeaWorld, and SeaWorld is synonymous with Shamu.

Attendance has dropped since the release of the documentary. Preliminary data released by SeaWorld revealed attendance has dropped to 3.05 million visitors so far this year, down about 500,000 from the same period in 2013. The documentary tells the story of an orca that killed a trainer at SeaWorld’s park in Orlando in 2010.

Animal rights activists converged on Sacramento for presenting petitions they said were signed by 1.2 million people worldwide against using killer whales in entertainment shows at amusement parks like SeaWorld. The advocacy group Sum of Us declared on its website urged followers to sign the petitions and said SeaWorld is already mounting a vicious campaign to defeat this assemblyman’s brave move.

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Friday 11, Apr 2014

Adams Expected Life Ban For Ostapchuk

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Adams Expected Life Ban For Ostapchuk

Olympic shot put champion Valerie Adams is disappointed to learn that her former rival Nadzeya Ostapchuk from Belarus has received a doping ban of just four years and not a life ban, Valerie’s manager said.

Ostapchuk received a retrospective ban that ends on August 14, 2016, for testing positive for the banned steroid Metenolone after she beat Valerie for gold at the London Games in 2012. Ostapchuk was stripped of the London Olympics and 2005 World Championships gold medals.

Test samples provided by Ostapchuk at the 2005 World Athletics Championships also found traces of the anabolic steroids, Formestane and 4-hydroxytestosterone. Adams’ manager Nick Cowan said they believe the Belarusian should have been given a life ban for a second offence. The ban imposed on the Belarusian will virtually rule her out of the 2016 Olympics with the suspension coming to an end during the athletics competition in Rio.

Cowan told Radio New Zealand that our understanding is that Ostapchuk has tested positive twice for drugs and added you would normally expect that you could face a life ban. Cowan also remarked we to be honest were expecting for it to be a bit heftier than four years but it is what it is. Adams’ manager also remarked they were not made aware of the process or reasoning and learnt about the ban after the name of Ostapchuk appeared on the latest list of banned athletes issued by the world governing body International Association of Athletics Federations.

Athletics New Zealand expressed their surprise at the length of the ban imposed on Ostapchuk and said they would need to review the decision. In a statement, chairperson Annette Purvis said whilst Athletics New Zealand is not comfortable with a ban of only four years for two doping breaches, we need to understand the full decision and all aspects that relate to the decision and the four year ban. Purvis added our staff have been in contact with Valerie and her management, and remain in close communication with them on this issue. The ANZ chairperson said Athletics New Zealand expects to offer further comment once the sanction had been examined in more detail.

Valerie Kasanita Adams is a four-time World champion, three-time World Indoor champion, and a two-time Olympic and Commonwealth champion. Valerie recently won her third world indoor championship gold medal after coming back from ankle and knee surgery. The 29-year-old extended her winning sequence to 44 consecutive victories with a winning throw of 20.67m. She won the world indoor crown in Valencia in 2008 and Istanbul in 2012 and was the silver medalist in Doha in 2010. The four-time world outdoor champion produced her best effort of 20.67m at the world indoor athletics championships at the ERGO Arena in Sopot, Poland to complete one of the most consistent series of her glittering career.

Ostapchuk can compete again after completing her ban and reinstatement requirements prescribed by the International Association of Athletics Federations, which include the return of medals, repayment of any prize money, and passing four drug tests.

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