What i want to understand, but simply cannot, is WHY are this Drug Use is not detected?? Is it that easy to get around the rules ? What's the deal ?
Maybe it is just time to give up, really. If we simply cannot properly catch the drug users, it is unfair to both users and non users to go on this way. Just shoot 'em up ,and die later. It's an individual choice.
I know, I know, " how can we set such an example for the youth " of this country ? Well, it's their choice too.
Spoken by an ex (very ex) athlete, father, and adult that has never so much as seen a drug more less taken one.
Prohibition did not work for alcohol and was repealed.
Can't let it go...our sport would die a quick death if drugs became the norm. Parents wouldn't want thier kids getting involved in a sport where to continue to compete at some point the kid would need to take drugs. No kids - no future. Imagine if the NFL legalized steroids. What parent would want their kid aspiring to make the NFL (and be drugged). Plus if you legalize drug use you essentially make it a requirement for all athletes to take the drugs to compete (i.e. Pro Bodybuilding).
They DO catch the drug use - especially at the top end in each event.
Someone higher up the chain (well, actually everyone is higher on the chain than me) can perhaps verify this, but my understanding is that blood tests can catch 100% of the cheats, 100% of the time, but the legal issues involved would be hard to surmount. It is also my understanding that the East Germans easily beat the tests in the 70's and 80's (as do some now) by simply knowing how the tests work and then masking the usage with other drugs. It's like hacking computers - you just have to know how one works to bypass its own safeguards.
Unfortunately I've come to the same conclusion. I thought that when random, out of competition, testing came out things would improve but doubt that's the case. Everybody involved in athletics can get hold of drugs in about two minutes. In my era (70's-80's)it was rampant. What was worse some of our administrators, coaches and yes, even doctors, both condoned and supported it. (To those who are now probably typing "name names" or shut up...tough). The old adage that the athletes are one step ahead is true, they are. When steriod tests started catching people they switched to HGH. Hell...I got a spam last week selling HGH online(a change from the usual viagra and penile enlargement ones). And, if one accepts that people were prepared to take drugs when there was little money in the sport, imagine what the incentive is now.
>Can't let it go...our sport would die a quick
>death if drugs became the norm. Parents wouldn't
>want thier kids getting involved in a sport where
>to continue to compete at some point the kid
>would need to take drugs. No kids - no future.
>Imagine if the NFL legalized steroids. What
>parent would want their kid aspiring to make the
>NFL (and be drugged). Plus if you legalize drug
>use you essentially make it a requirement for
>all athletes to take the drugs to compete (i.e.
They DO catch the drug
>use - especially at the top end in each event.
You think the majority of American parents look at NFL players and think, "little Johnny can play in the NFL if he lifts a lot of weights"...puleeeze. Agree that you still have to test but just don't accept what you are seeing are natural performances. Many aren't. Seems to me that 90% of true fans think many of the competitors are juiced. Since we don't seem capable of attracting regular sports fans, so what?
>Can't let it go...our sport would die a quick
death if drugs became the norm. Parents wouldn't
want thier kids getting involved in a sport where
to continue to compete at some point the kid
would need to take drugs. No kids - no future.<
What you're forgetting was that before there was out-of-competition testing, drugs WERE the norm. And guess what? There were more kids involved in the sport then, there were more meets, and more spectators.
I'm not sure it's cause and effect, but the cracking down own drugs has coincided with the deterioration of the base of the sport in this country.
There are still reasons to ban drugs and try to stay ahead of the people who violate the ban. But if you think the sport would necessarily die if we didn't ban drugs, you're kidding yourself.
The questions of the Day is,"If you do test one of your own athletes , do you report it?" This crap is still going on, WADA is still in litagation with USATF to release the names of the 13 American athletes who tested positive prior to 2000 Sydney Games. The USATF argued that it could not release the names of those who tested positive due to privacy laws in the US. The CAS ruled that this law did not exist , there was nothing preventing disclosure. The USATF countered that "B" samples were not yet processed, thus they could not reveal the names of the athletes. This whole processed started 4.5 years ago. Every Country in the world now follows the United States lead, you will never , ever see an Olympic medal hopeful from any country fail a test within there own Country. There is no incentive to embarrass your country,your development program,and risk IAAF rebates involved in world rankings. DROP ALL DRUG TESTING
if blood tests are really that accurate, lets use it. when people test positive their records if they have any should be discounted. 2 example boulami runs a 753 steeple test positive, but still is listed as world record holder at 7.55, i say if he ran 7.55 clean, it is very improbable he would resort to unfair means, so i think his 7.55 is tainted as well, same with grit breur 49.4 wjr if she had run that fast as a junior, she would not have used something banned to improve. lyle alzado came out and told of the rampant steroid use in football, high school and college as well as the pros and ken caminiti said major league baseball players, 90% are on steroids, he reduced that number after a lot of pressure. i dont think track really wants performance enhancers eliminated. A lot of people go to track meets to see fast times, and without performance enhancers there would still be great competitions, however you can just about forget world records.
>same with grit breur
>49.4 wjr if she had run that fast as a junior,
>she would not have used something banned to
Another "dodgy" thing about Grit Breuer is that she hasn't improved upon her WJR time during her whole career. She ran that time (49.42) in 1991, served a ban, came back in 1996 and has made the top-ten lists each year (bar 2000) since then, yet has not managed to better her 49.42. Heck, she hasn't even managed to break the 49.50 that she ran as an 18 year old, since coming back from her ban!
Her 100m, 200m, and indoor 200m PBs (11.13, 22.45, 22.58i) were all set in '91 or before, and just underline the suspicions.
This was based on the quote by Richard Pound IOC, head of World Anti Doping Agency.
Athletics Magazine/June 2003- Article s. Nagy
"WADA is still after USATF to release the names of the athletes involved.They (USATF) think they can tough it out. If a National Federation stonewalls long enough, it can suceed in protecting the athletes found guilty of drug use. "
There is more, but that is the basis of my comments, all the information is available if you do your research. Basically the issue is not dead , because one of the 13 athletes who won a medal they did not deserve. More litagation to come.
I think T&F suffers the greatest damage of all sports because of drug use.
Pro football probably has greater drug use, but football is all about relative performance. We just don't seem to care that linemen are 320 pounds nowadays. If all linemen take steroids, it balances out and the competition is deemed to be fair. People watch football for the game.
Track is different. We love track is because it is pure. You can't b.s. your way into a sub 10 second 100m. You either ran it or not. It is not relative to anything --- it is absolute and pure! Later in life you can't inflate your accomplishments without abjectly lying.
Drugs have sullied the purity of track. They have destroyed the trust and sanctity of records, particularly for women. (I would hate to face the temptation that Allyson Felix will face some day.) Drugs have made a mockery of a sport once so ideal and pure that the Olympics were created around it.
Mark I do agree with you sadly. From a competitve insider, this is what it has come down to. For endurance
athletes, no drugs are required, no EPO - nothing. What is happening is called the "buddy system". Cross country skiing, long sprints to marathon , its still to risky to fail a test at a major comp. You bring a "buddy" with a blood type match , take a blood donation from him and
centrifuge the blood. collect the red blood cells , and inject to yourself. This is dummied down of coarse. No drugs, masking agents, endocrinologist required. Be glad your comp days are behind you. Thing get more ungodly every day.
Rich K. above said it perfectly. The answer is not to give in but to FIX it. Lifetime bans are one answer, as is stripping the athlete of ALL awards and records won previously, whether they tested postive or not. Seems harsh, but truely stiff penalties combined with quality testing procedures are the answer.
When will you guys realize the medals are not what these athletes are after. It's the money, the fame, the bling bling. Just look at our most recent champions. Remember the mens 4x1, when they won the gold and showed off their chests, wrapped the flag around their heads and acted like fools. Winning didn't mean a gold medal, it meant acknowledgement, fame, a little more money in the pocket. If it takes drugs to get there, that's a small risk to take. Money is the incentive, not the damn medals
>When will you guys realize the medals are not
>what these athletes are after. It's the money,
>the fame, the bling bling. Just look at our most
>recent champions. Remember the mens 4x1, when
>they won the gold and showed off their chests,
>wrapped the flag around their heads and acted
>like fools. Winning didn't mean a gold medal, it
>meant acknowledgement, fame, a little more money
>in the pocket. If it takes drugs to get there,
>that's a small risk to take. Money is the
>incentive, not the damn medals
It's the medals that brings them the fame, though! Can't have one without the other!
>This was based on the quote by Richard Pound IOC,
head of World Anti Doping Agency. Athletics
Magazine/June 2003- Article s. Nagy Pound
Quote: "WADA is still after USATF to release
the names of the athletes involved.They (USATF)
think they can tough it out. If a National
Federation stonewalls long enough, it can suceed
in protecting the athletes found guilty of drug
There is more, but that is the basis of my comments, all the information is available
if you do your research. Basically the issue is
not dead , because one of the 13 athletes who won
a medal they did not deserve. More litagation to
I'll try this one more time. There is no litigation and there will be no litigation. There's a difference between the mouthing off of a blowhard (Pound), and the bringing of a lawsuit. There will be no litigation because WADA's lawyers know perfectly well that a binding arbitration panel found that USATF was justified in not releasing the information they had refused to release. Pound doesn't like this, and he'll probably continue to grumble about it. But the matter has been litigated already and USATF was vindicated.
>There is an interesting article in ESPN the
>magazine this week. Talks about the struggle
>between the steroid makers and the steroid
>testers......ya'll should check it out!
That article subtly indicates that the testers might do better if they had more funding. Of course, the leaders of most sports see improved drug testing as leading to less impressive competition and therefore smaller profits. I don't think it's a revolutionary statement to say that sports administrators want only the appearance of drug control rather than real control.
Of course, we would never catch all the cheats no matter what. But our current situation is something like leaving Congress in charge of policing campaing financing, and it's unlikely to ever really change. History will judge them (and already has).
By the way just for the record, I am not afraid to use my name either, it is Steve Barnes in Indianapolis.
I really hated to say what I did about legalization, or should I more aptly say non-illegalization.
It just seems so revealing here on this message board, when we hear from athletes and former athletes that have in the midst of things, that drug use is totally a part of the scene, and apparently cannot be erased.
As for young people, yes we certainly counsel them against all sorts of things, be it alcohol, drug abuse, or sex, but being realistic, those things of course still occur to great degrees.
So coaches, parents, religious leaders, etc., let's all keep counseling our youth against all these things, and also set a good example in our own lives as well.
So just have drug use by athletes subject to the same legal restraints as for non-athletes, no more, no less.
I agree we should be setting a good example for our kids - and the way to do that is to demonstrate to them that we will enforce the laws we set down, not give up because a few cheaters slip through the cracks.
I for one have complete confidence in the science behind the testing procedures. If the science is good (and I think we can agree accurately testing for performance enhancers is NOT rocket science) then the problem lies in WHO is being tested, HOW OFTEN they are tested, and most importantly WHAT are the penalties for testing positive. We could test more people more often, but $$ is an issue. There is money in this sport, most of it is just not at the athlete level, so $$ issues can be resolved.
This brings us to penalties. 2 year bans are a joke. Lifetime bans will be effective (especially after the first superstar goes down) and would give credibility to the effort.
el supremo, we are not that far apart. I guess what I am saying is either do it right, or do not do it. And we are not doing it right. And I agree with you on penalties... lifetime ban is the ONLY answer. Otherwise... SOS, DD.
But here is the problem... we only test at the top end ! Every drug/steroid user is not worried about being tested. The 56 foot shotputter whose dream is to throw 60 feet will juice up to get it done. He will never be tested. Also the high school kid throwing 50 that wants to break that school record of 52.
So I repeat, thewre is NO SOLUTION except at the very top. But maybe that is better than nothing. So I repeat one last time and then will FOREVER shut up... do it right, or forget it.
Every High School State Champ, every NCAA conference winner, etc.... plus widespread random testing of every person on the top 25 US list in every event.
The athletes see it one way and the fans see it another. The biggest story we had all winter was the Jones/Montgomery/Francis deal, and the reaction was nothing but negative -- and only because it LOOKED bad.
It may be tilting at windmills, but most fans see drug use as cheating, period. All you insiders that know all the top athletes might talk about moral relativism and other such crap, but the average American look at it quite differently. A scene from "Grosse Pointe Blank" sums it up -- the Minnie Driver character screams at the John Cusack character that "There are certain things you just don't DO in a civilized society!"
Maybe track wouldn't be in the popularity hole it's in now if Ben Johnson had been busted earlier in his career. Maybe it still would be. But I guarantee you that a lot of people got turned off the moment the stuff hit the fan.
I think we give the general public far too much credit for their knowledge and interest in the track drug scene. I marginally follow the Tour de France and international swimming, both of which have been hit by major drug scandals. Their problems only tend to make the sport a little more interesting (is the Irish woman juiced? Who is on EPO?) I think our drug problems don't amount to a hill of beans to those who semi-follow track. I ask kids on my track team whether they watch track on TV and what do they think about the drug issue. They just shrug their shoulders and say some do, some don't and they watch the meet if there is nothing better on MTV. Nobody watches less NFL because of the drug issue. Track's biggest problem is not drugs; it's our inability to market ourselves. We have arguably the best athletes on the planet and we still can't find a way to draw interest our way?
>el supremo, we are not that far apart. I guess
>what I am saying is either do it right, or do
>not do it. And we are not doing it right. And I
>agree with you on penalties... lifetime ban is
>the ONLY answer. Otherwise... SOS, DD.
>here is the problem... we only test at the top
>end ! Every drug/steroid user is not worried
>about being tested. The 56 foot shotputter whose
>dream is to throw 60 feet will juice up to get it
>done. He will never be tested. Also the high
>school kid throwing 50 that wants to break that
>school record of 52.
So I repeat, thewre is
>NO SOLUTION except at the very top. But maybe
>that is better than nothing. So I repeat one
>last time and then will FOREVER shut up... do it
>right, or forget it.
Every High School State
>Champ, every NCAA conference winner, etc.... plus
>widespread random testing of every person on the
>top 25 US list in every event.
How does the NCAA test now? Is it random? At the top is a great way to start, especially if the penalties are severe. Why not make it a lifetime ban or at least a 5 year ban. That's a long time to sit on your ass. Take away any records as well. Once a cheater, always... Almost all the women's records are tainted/untouchable. If you can catch these cheaters and ban them it will send a message to all coaches and athletes..."You're days are numbered" Why do we give them such a BS 2 year ban? Do we really believe the whole "Someone sabotaged my toothpaste or handed me a gatorade or any other BS"? Ban them for life. People would be scared to cheat then. Set the rules, make sure everyone knows them so we don't have any "I took some cold medicine..." What world-class athlete races w/ a cold anyway? Not any I know. I'll stop now 'cuz this will never happen...oh well, one can dream...
Up to now this line has dealt with "catching" the "cheating athlete". I would suggest that you read Steven Ungerledeider's book "Faust's Gold" - inside the East German Doping Machine. This book reveals how a geration of East German sports doctors used their expertise to cause harm to their patients, in the name of a greater good. We should recognize that "doping" is not always the free choice of the athlete, but may be directed by those individuals who have "power" over the athlete's health, training, and financial well being.
At this point in time, there is great disparity amoungst the international sporting bodies as to their enforcement of "doping". A large number of these bodies would prefer to have an international champion than to catch the "cheater". Consider the role politics and financial incentives play in the "athletic drug scene.
>>This brings us to penalties. 2
>year bans are a joke. Lifetime bans will be
>effective (especially after the first superstar
>goes down) and would give credibility to the
Never going to happen (and that's remembering yesterday's admonishment about use of "never"). Courts in several European countries (Russia and Germany come to mind right away) already found the IAAF's old 4-year bans to be a "restraint of trade" or something like that. In essence, they said that if you're a pro athlete you have a right to ply your trade, and that a 4-year ban was tantamount to being prohibited from ever working again. Punishment wasn't fitting the crime in their eyes. After a couple of those cases went against IAAF, they had no choice but to cut back to the 2-year ban.
>world-class athlete races w/ a cold anyway? Not
>any I know...
I guess you don't know any World Class athletes. It is fairly routine for an athlete to compete with, or just coming off of a cold. I am not condoning the cold medicine excuse, because it has been so abused in the past, but athletes do get colds and compete ALL THE TIME, especially when cash is on the line or simply in your contract.