US of­fi­cials want study of world records pro­posal

New Straits Times - - Sport -

of Ath­let­ics Fed­er­a­tions (IAAF), the world gov­ern­ing body, did not start stor­ing blood and urine sam­ples un­til 2005, mean­ing records set be­fore then could po­ten­tially be at risk.

“Any ac­tion per­tain­ing to records, from ‘re­tire­ment’ of records to chang­ing cri­te­ria for the record books, has the po­ten­tial to af­fect records that are clean as well as those that are tainted,” USA Track & Field (USATF) spokes­woman Jill Geer said in a state­ment on Tues­day.

“There is no per­fect so­lu­tion, just as there is no per­fect an­ti­dop­ing sys­tem.”

The pro­posal could po­ten­tially see Bri­tish marathoner Paula Rad­cliffe, a vo­cal critic of drug use in ath­let­ics, and triple jumper Jonathan Ed­wards lose their records since per­for­mances not meet­ing the pro­posed guide­lines would no longer be of­fi­cially sanc­tioned but would re­main on the “all-time list.”

Paula, whose mark was set in 2003, has branded the pro­posal “cow­ardly.”

“I am hurt and do feel this dam­ages my rep­u­ta­tion and dig­nity,” she said in a state­ment on Twit­ter.

Mike Pow­ell’s 1991 long jump mark and Hich­man El Guer­rouj’s 1,500m record from 1998 also would be un­der threat.

There is no sug­ges­tion that any took drugs.

The IAAF are ex­pected to dis­cuss the idea at their Au­gust coun­cil meet­ing and Jill said they would also talk about the pro­posal with their ath­letes and other ath­let­ics bod­ies.

“USATF will vet the mat­ter with our ath­letes, fel­low fed­er­a­tions and the IAAF,” Jill added.

“Ul­ti­mately, it is a mat­ter for the IAAF fam­ily to ex­am­ine and de­ter­mine what is best for the in­tegrity of the past, present and fu­ture of the sport on a global level.” Reuters

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