New IAAF boss vows to weed out drugs cheats


Se­bas­tian Coe vowed "zero tol­er­ance" for drug cheats in track and field af­ter win­ning a nar­row vote to be­come the new pres­i­dent of world ath­let­ics body the IAAF on Wed­nes­day.

Coe pipped Ukraine's Sergey Bubka 115-92 in the vote at the In­ter­na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Ath­let­ics Fed­er­a­tions (IAAF) Congress in Bei­jing, but he has a tough task ahead of him.

With a se­ries of dop­ing con­tro­ver­sies at the top of Coe's agenda when he takes of­fice af­ter the Au­gust 22-30 world cham­pi­onships in Bei­jing, the Bri­ton said he and his new team would be "vig­i­lant" in their cru­sade against cheats.

"There is a zero tol­er­ance to abuse of dop­ing in my sport and I will main­tain that to the very high­est level of vig­i­lance," said Coe, who won Olympic 1,500me­tre golds in the 1980 and 1984 Games.

"I don't want the thought that trust and in­tegrity are only some­thing that are rooted in chal­lenges around dop­ing in sport or dop­ing in track and field. There is a uni­ver­sal prob­lem with that in sport and we recog­nise that and we've been the lead role for that as long as I've been in the sport.

"That's some­thing I'm very proud of, that's some­thing I'll very hap­pily de­fend, how we ap­proached that."

Coe added: "Ev­ery­thing that you do in a sport is un­der­pinned by trust. It's the trust that ath­letes that are com­pet­ing feel that they are com­pet­ing in a free, fair and open en­vi­ron­ment.

"It's the trust that spec­ta­tors have go­ing into your sta­di­ums to be­lieve that what they're watch­ing is le­git­i­mate, and that is re­ally im­por­tant.

"It's the trust of par­ents when they are help­ing their off­spring make judge­ments about the types of sports they go to. They need to know that we are a sport that is very firm in this area." As part of his can­di­dacy man­i­festo, Coe had pro­moted es­tab­lish­ing an in­de­pen­dent anti-dop­ing body, with IAAF tests cur­rently go­ing through the World Anti-Dop­ing Agency (Wada).

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