UK Anti-Doping announces plans to test international Olympic athletes
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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

UK Anti-Doping announces plans to test international Olympic athletes

by Shane Stokes at 7:17 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
 
All nationalities will be liable for surprise testing once they are on UK soil

London OlympicsThe push to ensure the 2012 Olympic Games is as clean as possible has led to plans by UK Anti-Doping to examine not only athletes from that region, but also to target test international athletes as well.

The initiative was announced today, and will see any international athletes arriving to train, compete or stay in the United Kingdom being liable to out of competition tests. These will be in addition to those which will be carried out at the Games events.

UK Anti-Doping Chief Executive Andy Parkinson explained what it was trying to achieve. “For the past 12 months, UK Anti-Doping has been sending a strong message to national and international athletes likely to compete at London 2012; a message that the UK has one of the most advanced anti-doping systems in the world and that we will do all we can to protect clean athletes,” he stated.

“We have established a number of strong links with global partners and we can now use these to share information and pool resources. We are able to test any athlete on UK soil and we are utilising this right to help realise the UK’s ambition that London 2012 is the cleanest Games ever.”

Under the initiative, athletes will be liable to testing from the point they enter the UK. UK Anti-Doping has arranged with international federations and anti-doping organisations for information on the athletes to be provided to it, which means that targeted testing will be able to be carried out.

Both WADA and the IOC have said that they welcome the move. UK Minister for Sport and the Olympics Hugh Robertson has echoed this. “We are doing all we can to ensure that there is no place to hide for drug cheats in this country. Information sharing across borders and a strong testing programme will help in this fight in the run up to London 2012 and beyond.”

The number of out of competition tests has not yet been announced, nor the extent of the funding made available to cover the costs.

In February UK Anti-Doping spoke about the general testing which will be carried out on British athletes competing in both the Olympics and Paralympics. It said that both blood and urine testing would be carried out, and that the majority would be ‘no-advance notice, out-of-competition tests,’ with others targeted at selection events.

It laid out a target of ensuring that every UK athlete would be tested at least once.

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