Salazar ac­cused of en­cour­ag­ing dop­ing

The China Post - - SPORTS -

Long-dis­tance run­ning coach Al­berto Salazar’s for­mer as­sis­tant is among those ac­cus­ing the Amer­i­can of vi­o­lat­ing anti-dop­ing rules and en­cour­ag­ing dop­ing by one of his top run­ners, Olympic sil­ver medal­ist Galen Rupp.

In a story Wed­nes­day by ProPublica and BBC (, for­mer Salazar as­sis­tant Steve Mag­ness ac­cused Salazar of us­ing dop­ing prac­tices for his ath­letes at the Nike Ore­gon Project.

The story quoted both Salazar and Rupp as deny­ing any wrong­do­ing. Nei­ther Salazar nor Rupp’s agent, Ricky Simms, im­me­di­ately re­sponded to emails from The As­so­ci­ated Press.

Rupp won the sil­ver medal in the 10,000 me­ters at the Lon­don Games, fin­ish­ing be­hind an­other of Salazar’s lead­ing run­ners, Mo Farah of Bri­tain. The story said no dop­ing ac­cu­sa­tions have been made against Farah.

Salazar is con­sid­ered Amer­ica’s most pow­er­ful run­ning coach. He built his rep­u­ta­tion as a coach af­ter win­ning the New York Marathon three years in a row from 1980-82 and the Bos­ton Marathon in 1982.

While none of the Nike Ore­gon Proj- ect ath­letes have failed a drug test, ProPublica and the BBC re­ported al­le­ga­tions that some of Salazar’s meth­ods in­cluded the use of banned steroids and un­eth­i­cal prac­tices.

The story said U.S. Olympic dis­tance run­ner Kara Goucher and at least six other for­mer Salazar ath­letes and staff mem­bers have gone to the U.S. An­ti­Dop­ing Agency with their con­cerns. It said USADA has not con­firmed or de­nied any in­ves­ti­ga­tions.

USADA CEO Travis Ty­gart did not re­turn a tele­phone mes­sage left by The As­so­ci­ated Press.

UK Anti- Dop­ing, the body re­spon­si­ble for en­sur­ing com­pli­ance with the World Anti- Dop­ing Code in the UK, said in a state­ment that “the news tonight re­flects the chal­lenge we face to en­sure ath­letes and sports events ... are pro­tected from dop­ing. Ex­pos­ing dop­ing ath­letes and their sup­port net­work is a re­spon­si­bil­ity that rests with ev­ery­one in­volved in sport.”

The re­port states Rupp had been given testos­terone in 2002, when he was 16. It in­ter­viewed Mag­ness, who worked at the Ore­gon project in 2011. Mag­ness said he saw a doc­u­ment show­ing Rupp’s blood lev­els that showed he was on “testos­terone med­i­ca­tion.”

Mag­ness said when he ques­tioned Salazar about the doc­u­ment, the coach said it had been a mis­take. Mag­ness did not re­spond to an email from AP.

Salazar de­clined to be in­ter­viewed for the pro­gram, but told the BBC in a state­ment the legal nu­tri­tional sup­ple­ment Testo­boost had been in­cor­rectly recorded in the doc­u­ment as “testos­terone med­i­ca­tion.”

He added that the “al­le­ga­tions your sources are mak­ing are based upon false as­sump­tions and half-truths in an at­tempt to fur­ther their per­sonal agen­das.”

Rupp de­nied ever us­ing testos­terone or testos­terone med­i­ca­tion.

The pro­gram aired claims that testos­terone was seen on sev­eral oc­ca­sions by ath­letes and staff, in­clud­ing a mas­sage ther­a­pist at an altitude train­ing camp in Utah in 2008. The ther­a­pist was re­port­edly told by Salazar the testos­terone was for his own use for treat­ment of a heart con­di­tion.

The BBC also al­leged that Salazar tested testos­terone cream on a hu­man to find out how much it would take to trig­ger a pos­i­tive drug test.

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