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Monday, August 14, 2006

Anti-Doping News

Over the past week the European Championships were held in Goteborg, Sweden. Once one of THE major international meets, it's been knocked down a peg or two in the last couple of decades.

Now we get three drug-related news stories. First, five former Swedish athletes were caught with cocaine by narcotics officers after a post-meet party.

Then, blood-doping paraphernalia along with instructions in both English and Russian were found in a garbage can outside a hotel in with the Russian team was staying.

Then, a reporter following up on that story found more syringes, tubes and so forth in a box across the street.

These last two discoveries appeared to be hastily discarded, and one theory is athletes panicked at the sight of the fuzz involved in the first bust. Sudden improvements by many Russian women's distance runners, especially at these championships, fit the profile of blood-doping. Apparently Swedish law does not allow for collecting DNA samples on non-citizens, so the possibility of making matches might be slim.

I'll keep you up to date on these stories as they develop.

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