needles-and-medication© Copyright – 2013 – Athletics Illustrated

It is time now for the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) and the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) to work with force on member nations who refuse to suspend or ban permanently athletes who test positive for performance enhancing drugs. After all of the many recent positive drug tests, it is now time to put a stop to apparent state–endorsed and or state-ignored doping once and for all, otherwise, without a deterrent doping will continue, unabated.

Wada and the IAAF need to set a precedent now. Without repercussions, large-scale doping will continue. If participation or success at the Olympic Games level is so important to member nations, then risking all will bring closer the probability of putting a stop to apparent organised doping. After all it is the IAAF who maintain, “Only a “clean” athlete should be allowed to benefit from his or her competitive results.”

In April of 2013, thirty-one Turkish athletes tested positive for anabolic steroids. The biggest name from the group is likely 1500 metre Olympic gold medallist, Asli Ckir Alptkin, who having already been suspended for two years for doping infractions in 2004; this time she faced a lifetime ban. On December 3rd, The Turkish Athletics Federation exonerated the athlete. “It has been decided that there is no grounds for national sporting sanctions against Asli Cakir Alptekin as she did not violate any anti-doping rules,” said a statement from the disciplinary commission on the Turkish federation`s website. The Turkish Athletics Federation may be making a mockery of the process.

During the Paris July 6th Diamond League Meet, Alpktin sent up a red flag by shaving a mountainous five seconds off of her own personal best time, winning the race in the time of 3:56.62, six weeks later she won the 2012 London Olympics 1500 metre gold medal. At that time, anomalies were found in her biological passport and were reported on March 22nd 2013. The other Turkish athletes that tested positive were found to have traces of the anabolic steroids, Stanazolol and Turinabol in their system. Injected Turinabol remains in the system for 12 to 18 months. Taken orally, Stanazolol remains in the system for as short a period of time as two weeks and up to six weeks. Masking agents clear the system in just a few days up to less than a month. There is the possibility that if she was tested today, the results could come back negative, what retribution is there? Perhaps the Turkish Athletics Federation is gambling. Neither Wada nor the IAAF have made official statements at this time.

On November 9th, Athletics Illustrated wrote, “On the eve of The World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) conference that takes place in Johannesburg, South Africa, ‘to help shape the future of one of the most pressing issues faced in sport today – doping’ sports fans, stakeholders and athletes everywhere are interested in what will come of the conference. In terms of catching up with performance enhancing drug cheats, is progress going to be made?’ The question of the day was will a first-time four year ban be endorsed for drug cheats. Without serious repercussions apparent organised doping will continue.

During 2013, American sprinter Tyson Gay, as well as five Jamaican athletes returned positive tests including, sprinters Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson, high jumper Demar Robinson, discus throwers Allison Randall and Traves Smikle. There are several more unnamed athletes, rumoured to be from Jamaica that apparently have had positive tests.

At laboratories situated in Cologne and Moscow, while incorporating new testing methods, hundreds of urine samples have tested positive for large amounts of anabolic steroids, taken from the 2012 London Olympic Games. Orally-taken Turinabol is one of the agents detected. Turinabol was identified that was under heavy usage during the state-run doping programme of the former East German sports machine. And, just as in Turkey, Stanazolol was also detected. However, with the new testing method called, ‘long-term metabolites method’, steroids can now be detected more than six months after they were taken.

The steps that need to happen in order to kill cheating are to act swiftly, reward the next clean athlete; move them up one position immediately. Provide a four-year ban for first-time athletes and lifetime bans for second-time offenders and finally, suspend member nations from international competition until proven clean. The sport of athletics risks a major set-back of unprecedented proportions, should the hundreds of samples from the 2012 London Olympic Games not be acted upon with force and finality.

The first and crucial step to winning the war on drugs is to catch up to the drug trade and the methods of masking them. It is widely believed that Wada and the IAAF are finally gaining on the cheaters however; if apparent state-endorsed and or state-ignored doping continues, so will the doping. With the ability to detect steroids more efficiently, it is time now to send a clear and strong message to all cheaters and their supporters, be it a coach, medical professional, fellow athletes or management, that cheating will not be tolerated.




  1. My argument has always been that people would like to watch races, not time trials and smart races are more fun. So when a race is tactical and the announcers are good, it can be quite exciting. Take drugs out of the game and maybe more people will race like they did in the past. Sure there were sit and kickers, but not as stupid as they do today.

  2. People say that running fast is way out for Kenyans from poverty. This is a case. So is a case to be made for looking around and see too many fast runners so how to be faster? It is also like the impossibal and people dont give up easy in Kenya. We find the way. Maybe the Jamaicans are poor too?

    • Yeah that is why there are investment advisors in North America that cheat people directly out of their money, because it is difficult to be number 1 honestly and who wants to make less than the other guy? What a load of shit.

    • Well then there should be a new name other than doping like, “artificial enhancement”…some people will argue that going to elevation is enhancing, so someone takes it a step further and buys an altitude tent. Next step, blood doping? Then EPO…full on cheating…where is cheating? When actually messing with the physical body.

  3. The author is linking Jamaican sprinters who failed drug test for stimulants from supplements with athletes who took preformance-enhancing drugs. That is unfair. If you focus on the Jamaican sprinters, none of them was running any fast times–they were running much slower than their presonar records. How do you link them with performance-enhancing drugs?

    • What part of “banned” + “positive tests” are you not getting? If the drug is banned, it is either a performance enhancing drug or a masking agent, but either way banned = cheating. You okay with cheating? Whats unfair is somewhere behind the cheaters whether Jamaican or otherwise are people making less money racing clean. That is what is unfair.

    • Ya wonder if anyone is clean. But more to that statement is the question, why is Mr. Hall defending the Jamaicans when they had positive tests? Positive means that they were ingesting or shooting something that is banned. Do we even know what the stimulant was? This is ridiculous.

  4. I see the writer just quoting what happened. There were several Jamaicans caught. There were many Turkish and there were hundreds of others…that is scary. Hundreds…resembles the Tour de France….scary.

  5. listen jerks, you and thw writer of this garbage is just hating on jamaica and kenya, Carla Lewis fail so many drugs text Floyd Griffiths fail so many drugs tests and the usada just sweep it under the rug, Now that jamaica and kenya are making the playing field even and the once might usa is not on top of the world , you people throwing stone at other nation. Even thou usada have out of competition testing i bet most of the athlete tested positive and usada do the regular just sweep it under the rug.

    • Listen angry person. If you do some digging, you will find out the writer is not even American. So now you are throwing Americans under the bus. Why don’t you defend Turkey? The article is mostly about Turkey.

  6. Yes ban the country for one Worlds or two major events, but not say Olympics that is 4 years away maybe. Might be too long for a whole nation. You don’t want to kill it for young people. Maybe next Worlds XC and next Worlds track or if Olympics were next, then the Olympics. If they are a Pan American or Commonwealth Country sanction them for those if they are close. Even the publicity as to why they are not in a competition would be pretty painful….

  7. I don’t think any country is perfectly clean. It seems like there are more cheaters than non cheaters. I still think they should go 4 years on first offense and forever on second offense. And I agree with the author that a nation like Turkey with 31 positive tests, should be sanctioned for one Worlds and one Olympics.

  8. Jamaican athletes see a way out, like the Kenyan’s see a way out. Not justifying, but the money they can make is big for them. That is a reason. But it is amazing that the population of Jamaica and fit into LA three times and somehow LA has zero sprinters and Jamaica has all of them almost. Seems a little suspicious considering genetically they originate from the same part of Africa.

    • Genetically we ALL originate from the same part of Africa…not just individuals with a trait that dictates darker complexion.

      Your logic is so faulty it’s laughable. So why isn’t Jamaica full of amazing basketball players?

      • Basketball players? Culture maybe? The belief that we originate from Africa is a science-based thing at the moment. Watch it change like many other things we believe…you can’t tell me that people who originate from west Africa are not better sprinters than east Africans or Japanese or Swedes et al. If so, then are they 100% of the time on steroids? That is what would have to happen by your logic.

  9. She is probably Jamaican and doesn’t like the light shined on her country. Truth is, Jamaica the top sprint country and Kenya the top distance country, neither have out of competition testing. Also, they pay almost nothing to Wada, so it is America, Canada, UK etc that really fund Wada and the IAAF to go into these countries and do the testing. IOC matches half the money from each country, I think. But to be fair, the hundreds of positive tests from the Olympics could be from dozens of countries.

  10. Fabian Gayle,

    He didn’t write much about the Jamaicans and he mentioned the American and he talked about Turkey and the hundreds of positive tests from the Olympics would have to be from several countries.

    Guilty, much?

  11. Everything jamaica, what about the usada who covered up so many of their atheletes positive test, tyson ay has tested positive 3 times before he was finally busted, give jamaica a break an look at carmelita jeter and allyson felix. and the one year wonder miss tina madison