Athletics Weekly - - Dip Finish -

WHEN Asli Cakir Alptekin fin­ished first in the 2012 Olympic women’s 1500m fi­nal, the re­sult was treated with cyn­i­cal in­dif­fer­ence.

Alptekin de­scribed her vic­tory as “Turk­ish power” but AW ran a web­site ar­ti­cle a cou­ple of hours af­ter the race head­lined “Turk­ish de­light or doubt?”

Lisa Do­briskey told BBC straight af­ter the race: “I don’t be­lieve I’m com­pet­ing on a level play­ing field.”

On social me­dia, Nick McCormick, who raced the 5000m at the

2012 Games, tweeted: “1500m #restin­peace”, while An­thony White­man tweeted: “The 1500m used to be the Blue Riband seen as one of the high­lights of the OG now it’s an em­bar­rass­ment to Mid­dle Dis­tance run­ning! #sad.”

Ev­ery­one’s hunch was cor­rect, as Alptekin later tested pos­i­tive and had her vic­tory erased. It was her sec­ond pos­i­tive test, too, fol­low­ing a twoyear ban she was given af­ter fail­ing a drugs test at the 2004 World Ju­nior Cham­pi­onships.

So it was re­mark­able last week to see her break anti-dop­ing rules for a third time and re­ceive a life­time ban from the Turk­ish ath­let­ics fed­er­a­tion.

She had pre­vi­ously been given an eight-year ban af­ter Lon­don 2012 but re­turned this year af­ter the ban was halved and its start date back­dated to 2013. Her only race in 2017 ap­pears to have been at the Euro­pean Cham­pion Clubs Cup Cross Country event, where she fin­ished 11th but helped her club win the team ti­tle.

Asli Cakir Alptekin: se­rial drugs cheat

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