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  1. #271

    Re: The Sports Doping Thread

    OCTOBER 11, 2019 / 6:31 PM / UPDATED 15 MINUTES AGO
    U.S. Olympic champion Dwyer gets 20-month doping ban

    (Reuters) - American double Olympic swimming champion Conor Dwyer will miss next year’s Tokyo Games after receiving a 20-month doping ban for having testosterone pellets inserted in his body.

    The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) announced on Friday that an independent three-member panel of the American Arbitration Association (AAA) had determined the suspension.

    Dwyer, 30, tested positive for an anabolic agent in three out-of-competition urine samples last November and December, USADA said in a news release.

    “Following a full evidentiary hearing, the panel found that Dwyer had testosterone pellets inserted in his body in violation of the rules,” USADA said.

    USADA CEO Travis Tygart added: “As noted in the panel’s decision, USADA is independent of sport and here to help athletes ensure they compete clean and protect their health and well-being within the rules.

    “It’s frustrating that Mr Dwyer did not take advantage of this support and hopefully this case will convince others to do so in order to protect fair and healthy competition for all athletes.”

    Dwyer’s 20-month ban began on Dec. 21 last year, the date of his provisional suspension.

    He was part of the U.S. 4x200m freestyle teams that won gold at the 2012 and 2016 Olympics. He also claimed bronze in the individual 200 freestyle at Rio in 2016.

    Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina; Editing by Ken Ferris

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-s...source=twitter
    There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life.”

    ― Frank Zappa





  2. #272

    Re: The Sports Doping Thread


  3. #273

    Re: The Sports Doping Thread

    WADA Committee Recommends Russia Face New Olympic Ban

    A panel at the World Anti-Doping Agency has recommended that Russia face a four-year ban from global sports and new restrictions on its athletes and teams at next year’s Tokyo Olympics.

    By Tariq Panja
    Nov. 25, 2019, 1:41 p.m. ET

    A key World Anti-Doping Agency committee has recommended Russia face a four-year ban from global sports for violations of doping rules, a decision that could see Russian athletes and teams barred not only from next year’s Tokyo Olympics but from a series of other major competitions.

    Under the recommendations, Russian athletes would compete at a second straight Olympic Games in neutral uniforms and collect any medals they win without the raising of the nation’s flag or the playing of its anthem.

    The proposed punishments were included in a report produced by a WADA committee led by the British lawyer Jonathan Taylor. His panel has, for several years, been investigating Russian compliance with global antidoping rules after an earlier scandal; among the conclusions it reached was that Russia deliberately manipulated a database of test results turned over to WADA as part of the settlement of an earlier doping investigation to conceal failed drug tests by Russian athletes.

    A final ruling on the proposed punishments is expected on Dec. 9, when WADA’s board meets in Paris. It is expected to agree with the recommendations. Any decision by WADA would be subject to appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

    A WADA spokesman declined to comment on the report or its findings.

    The decision to bar Russia and impose restrictions on its athletes and teams is the latest chapter in a scandal that first emerged in 2015 with revelations of a sprawling state-sponsored doping program that was remarkable in its scale and sophistication.

    If WADA’s board, as expected, agrees with Taylor’s recommendations, Russian athletes will only be allowed to compete in Tokyo in similar fashion to the 2018 Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea. At those Games, individual sports federations were allowed to clear specific participants, and the same standard may be applied next year, according to people with direct knowledge of the report’s contents. In Pyeongchang, Russians with clean doping records marched behind the Olympic flag and competed with the specially created designation Olympic Athlete From Russia.

    But the proposed penalties will affect Russian sports well beyond the Olympic Games. According to people who have seen the report, the recommendations call for Russia to be barred from all international competitions for four years by governing bodies who are signatories to the WADA code, a group that includes soccer’s governing body, FIFA, the organizer of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. The report also calls for Russian government officials to be barred from attending sporting events and for the country to be barred from hosting — or even bidding for — sporting events for four years, meaning Russia’s exile as a host could stretch much further, according to people familiar with the matter. The officials declined to be identified because they were not authorized to speak publicly about the report’s contents.

    Still, the prospect of hundreds of Russian athletes in Tokyo — even if they have been cleared to compete — is likely to be criticized by some athletes groups and national doping agencies, who remain angry that the country has not been sufficiently held to account for running a huge doping program that called into question results at several Olympics and dozens of other competitions. But it would conform with the views of the International Olympic Committee’s president, Thomas Bach, who opposes anything resembling a blanket ban.

    “Our principle is that the guilty ones must be punished as hard as possible and the innocent ones must be protected,” Bach said last week.


    Under regulations adopted in 2018, WADA has complete authority to punish Russia, something that was not the case when the scandal first emerged after the Sochi Olympics. At the time, individual sports federations, including the I.O.C., were allowed to deal with Russia’s cheating on their own. The results were mixed, with several federations failing to act decisively and the I.O.C. welcoming Russia back into the fold almost immediately after the Pyeongchang Games, even though it had yet to be cleared by WADA.

    WADA finally reinstated Russia’s antidoping agency last year, though it reserved the right to revoke that clearance and issue stronger punishments if Russia did not provide athlete data from the Moscow laboratory at the heart of the cheating scandal. In September, WADA investigators discovered that the data submitted had been altered, and the organization told Russia that it needed to provide compelling justification for the changes or face grave punishment.

    Having judged Russia’s response to be inadequate, Taylor’s committee prepared a report, which was sent to WADA board members late last week.

    The severity of the punishment, which will almost certainly be appealed if WADA’s board adopts the Taylor committee recommendations, immediately created uncertainty for other major sporting events, including next summer’s European soccer championships, for which Russia, whose team has qualified, is providing one of the host cities.

    The penalties are in line with recent comments from Yuri Ganus, the head of Russia’s antidoping agency, who has been vocal in his criticism of Russia’s handling of the doping crisis and who predicted a multiyear ban.

    Ganus said that by deleting the data, Russian officials had created the “biggest crisis” yet for sports in the country, which remains under the shadow of the cheating program that was directed by its former antidoping head Grigory Rodchenkov, with support of the country’s intelligence services, according to an independent investigation. Rodchenkov now lives in the United States after he revealed the scheme he created and ran.

    It is unclear how many Russian athletes could be barred from competing if the new recommendations lead to a series of eligibility reviews. But WADA officials said they had identified the Russians whose data was missing from the manipulated database provided to the organization.


    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/25/s...740252ing-news
    There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life.”

    ― Frank Zappa





  4. #274

    Re: The Sports Doping Thread

    Russian Doping Blurs Innocence and Guilt, With Olympics Caught in Middle
    The manipulation of a drug-testing database raised doubts about 145 Russian athletes suspected of cheating. But with their records altered, some may yet compete in next year’s Tokyo Games.

    By Tariq Panja
    Dec. 2, 2019
    Updated 4:56 p.m. ET

    For the second time in four years, sports leaders are facing the question of whether to ban Russia and its athletes from the Olympics and other major competitions. And this time, less than a year before the Tokyo Games, there are loud and important voices arguing that there is no choice but to impose the harshest possible punishment.

    The problem, those voices say, is not what antidoping officials know about Russia and its athletes. It is what they can never know.

    Russia’s deletion and manipulation of thousands of drug-testing records have cast the credibility of hundreds of Russian athletes into doubt and raised uncomfortable questions about the integrity of next summer’s Tokyo Olympics. Russia’s actions, part of an organized scheme laid out last month in an 88-page report produced by investigators from the World Anti-Doping Agency, have also made determining which athletes cheated — and which did not — a Sisyphean challenge.

    According to the investigators’ report, cases against at least 145 Russian athletes suspected of using performance-enhancing drugs have been “materially prejudiced” by deleted or altered data. Scores of drug cheats, then, can never be conclusively identified. Records set and races won can never be challenged. Medals illicitly secured can never be reclaimed. But the larger issue, antidoping officials around the world said, is that no one can be sure that athletes who gained an advantage through Russia’s program will not be present at next year’s Summer Games.

    “We are talking about years of evidence and investigations that have exposed hundreds of potentially positive results: How many athletes are actually going to be brought to justice?” said Beckie Scott, a Canadian Olympian who this year will end her term as chairwoman of WADA’s athlete committee.

    “I think for clean athletes,” she added, “it doesn’t instill a lot confidence the system is working on their behalf.”

    The system’s next chance will arrive soon. The World Anti-Doping Agency’s board will meet next Monday to decide whether to accept a suite of recommendations from its compliance committee, which, with the help of a team of investigators, documented Russian actions that included not only the manipulation of drug-testing data, but also an effort to fabricate computer messages to pin the blame on the whistle-blower who exposed the country’s huge, state-sponsored doping program.

    Russia is expected to appeal any penalty, even though its top antidoping official, Yuri Ganus, acknowledged in October that “thousands” of changes were made to the data to protect the reputations and positions of former star athletes who now have roles in government or who function as senior sports administrators in Russia.

    The suggested penalties include a ban for Russian teams from international sporting events, including the Olympics and soccer’s World Cup, but they stop short of a blanket ban against individual athletes. Athletes and national antidoping officials, though, say that is exactly what is needed.

    “The obvious intent by manipulating the data was to ensure doped athletes were able to escape sanction,” said Travis Tygart, the chief executive of the United States Anti-Doping Agency. “Now we can never know, and all are necessarily part of the cover-up, as sad as it may seem, if there are truly innocent ones. Those in power in Russia threw them all under the bus.”

    Last week, Tygart called explicitly for a ban on Russian athletes at the Tokyo Games, saying case-by-case reviews of Russian athletes like the ones that allowed Russians to compete as neutrals in the 2016 Rio Games proved to be “inadequate.” Michael Ask, the chief executive of Denmark’s antidoping agency and the chairman of iNADO, an umbrella group for international antidoping organizations, said he would like to see a blanket ban across all sports for Russian athletes, allowing for only rare exceptions.

    “I think we know by now, if we didn’t already know, that everything that has anything to do with that Moscow laboratory cannot be trusted,” Ask said. Only a draconian punishment, he and Tygart said, will protect clean athletes from other countries and force Russia to change its behavior. It is an opinion shared by Olympians like Scott, whose bronze medal in cross-country skiing at the 2002 Olympics was later upgraded to silver, and then to gold, after the Russians who finished ahead of her were disqualified for doping offenses.

    One problem is that the International Olympic Committee president, Thomas Bach, disagrees with a broad ban on Russian athletes. Throughout the years of investigations that followed the 2015 revelations of Russia’s extensive doping program, the I.O.C. has taken pains to emphasize that it has no influence over WADA’s decision-making, even though it provides half of the organization’s funding and its members also serve on the antidoping agency’s board. But its opposition to a blanket ban is not new; when WADA’s former president, Craig Reedie, called for such a ban on Russia before the 2016 Rio Games, the proposal was rejected by Bach, who then, as now, said a balance needed to be struck between “individual justice” and “collective punishment.”

    Two weeks ago, he repeated his opposition to a blanket ban on Russian athletes, even before the findings of the WADA committee were made public. To Bach, who won a team gold medal in fencing for Germany at the 1976 Montreal Olympics, punishing a generation of athletes for the sins of the past, or of individuals, would be inherently unfair. Only those associated with the yearslong state-backed doping program, he said, should face sporting excommunication.


    As the scandal has played out in public, Russia, despite years of embarrassing headlines, has largely remained present on the global sports scene. Hundreds of Russian athletes continue to compete in their national colors, and in 2018 the country staged the world’s most-watched sporting event, the FIFA World Cup.

    At the same time, it was continuing to balk at WADA’s request for access to data from the Moscow laboratory at the center of the doping scandal. For years, Russian antidoping officials and leaders at Russia’s sports ministry claimed the facility was off-limits to them, declared a crime scene by the Russian government and placed under the control of security services.

    Russia finally relented last year, as part of an agreement with WADA. In January, Russia allowed a WADA team to extract the data from the laboratory’s database. WADA’s investigators had hoped to compare the Moscow data with another athlete antidoping file from the laboratory — known as the LIMS database — that it received from a whistle-blower in 2017.

    What the investigators found, though, is that the data sets did not match; hundreds of tests had been altered or deleted by Russia, they said, before the information was turned over to WADA.

    “What is already certain is that the alterations and deletions of the Moscow Data make it impossible to conclude definitively that any of the athletes included in the LIMS database do not have a case to answer for breach of the antidoping rules, which is just as unwelcome an outcome for the clean athletes among them,” the author of the WADA report, the British lawyer Jonathan Taylor, wrote to WADA’s board members last month.

    At a meeting of the WADA board two months earlier, Taylor had underlined that point, saying the unreliability of the Russian data made it impossible to “properly clear” innocent athletes.

    An I.O.C. spokesman said this week that it would be WADA’s responsibility to implement any penalties should it accept the recommendations set out by Taylor’s committee. But first it needs to know where to look.

    When WADA’s investigators uncovered crude efforts to frame the Russian whistle-blower, Grigory Rodchenkov, and other former officials, they also discovered a plot to hide incriminating evidence against Evgeny Kudryavtsev, the official who had been responsible for ensuring that the biological samples of Russian athletes competing overseas were clean.

    Kudryavtsev had served as a witness in the successful appeals of 28 Russian athletes who competed at the 2018 Winter Olympics.

    Those cases, antidoping officials said, now may need to be reviewed.

    “If the evidence in court turns out not to be valid, of course the case needs to be heard again,” said Ask, the antidoping chief in Denmark. “That would be the same standard in any normal society: If the evidence has changed, the case should be heard again.”

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/02/s...core-ios-share
    There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life.”

    ― Frank Zappa





  5. #275

    Re: The Sports Doping Thread

    Re: Thomas Bach's opinion on the banning of all Russian athletes: I understand the concept that there are some (probably only a few) Russian Olympic athletes who truly have never cheated from the pharmacological standpoint. And yes, those few will suffer in a broad-based ban. But my experience in skating taught me that international sports organizations, while saying they are trying to be fair, have come up with punishments that were not nearly sufficient to get the attention of the Russian federations, and, since they are so involved in all this, the Russian government. I say, ban them all for a couple of Olympics and then see if anyone gets the message. It may take something almost that drastic. The clean athletes who are cheated need to blame their own government and sports federations, NOT the international officials.

    GH

  6. #276

    Re: The Sports Doping Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by GlennHarman View Post
    Re: Thomas Bach's opinion on the banning of all Russian athletes: I understand the concept that there are some (probably only a few) Russian Olympic athletes who truly have never cheated from the pharmacological standpoint. And yes, those few will suffer in a broad-based ban. But my experience in skating taught me that international sports organizations, while saying they are trying to be fair, have come up with punishments that were not nearly sufficient to get the attention of the Russian federations, and, since they are so involved in all this, the Russian government. I say, ban them all for a couple of Olympics and then see if anyone gets the message. It may take something almost that drastic. The clean athletes who are cheated need to blame their own government and sports federations, NOT the international officials.

    GH
    I totally agree. That should've been done years ago. Ban them all and see what happens.
    There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life.”

    ― Frank Zappa





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