[Cevdopagem] Pound catches up to doping /Random drug testing begins

Ana Teresa Guazzelli Beltrami aninhabeltrami em hotmail.com
Terça Janeiro 17 11:59:02 BRST 2006


Pound catches up to doping
By Tim Warsinskey
Plain Dealer Reporter

Athletes in search of a competitive edge are as old as sport itself. Some 
research suggests early Olympians in ancient Greece consumed mushroom 
extracts and plant seeds to enhance performance.

The first recorded Olympian to pay a price for "juicing" was marathon runner 
Thomas Hicks, who nearly died in 1904 after mixing brandy and strychnine.

The introduction of amphetamines in the 1930s was followed by the first 
steroids in the 1950s, which led to many generations of improved and 
harder-to-detect drugs.

What's next?

"The next specter coming down the track is genetic manipulation," said 
Richard Pound, chairman of the World Anti-Doping Agency. "We're trying to be 
there as it develops, instead of playing catch-up."

The world has been playing catch-up in the arena of policing drugs in sports 
for decades, Pound said in a speech at the City Club of Cleveland on Friday.

"These [sports] federations and the Olympic Committee let the problem get 
out of hand," he said.

Pound, a Montreal tax lawyer and former vice president of the International 
Olympic Committee, was late to the movement. He went from being a defender 
of sprinter Ben Johnson, the 1988 Summer Olympics' most notorious drug 
cheat, to an international champion of "the fight against doping in sport," 
as he calls it.

He has, in recent weeks, been a thorn in the side of professional cyclists, 
saying their sport supports a culture of "deliberate cheating," and he 
suggested up to a third of the National Hockey League's players took some 
form of performance-enhancing drugs.

Pound said performance-enhancing drugs have gone from being a sports problem 
to a public health issue on par with the international trade of illegal 
narcotics, and major professional sports share the blame.

"Take the pyramids of ice hockey, football and basketball on top of baseball 
and you end up with a situation that could be, and probably is, a public 
health problem," he said.

"We're told by Interpol that the economic value of the steroids and related 
substances market exceeds the market for marijuana, cocaine and heroin 
combined. Think about that when someone is trying to tell you it's only a 
few hundred players.

"I think we're making some progress, finally. The professional leagues have 
been exposed in a combination of denial and deception."

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Random drug testing begins
The Telegram (St. John's)
Mon 16 Jan 2006
Page: C1
Section: Sports

NHL players were subject to random drug testing starting Sunday as the 
league put into effect its new drug policy.

World Anti-Doping Agency president Dick Pound created a stir in November 
when he claimed as many as a third of NHL players take some form of 
performance enhancing drug.

Dallas Stars centre Mike Modano downplayed the significance of random 
testing, saying it was a knee-jerk reaction to the revelation of rampant 
steroid use in professional baseball.

This is kind of the domino effect from baseball that's kind of trickled into 
the other sports, Modano said Sunday in Montreal where the Stars were 
preparing for Monday's game against the Canadiens.

As much as it's floating around in baseball, I think everybody's opinion was 
that it's probably floating around in other sports, so everybody had to 
follow suit.

Modano wasn't opposed to increased testing because he said the temptation to 
do everything possible to be at your best is very high as a professional 
athlete.

In any sport, there's a lot of expectations to perform at the highest level, 
and players get desperate and will do anything to keep their jobs and stay 
in the league, he said.

It depends how far you're willing to take that risk.

Montreal Canadiens defenceman Sheldon Souray thinks testing will help 
improve public opinion of athletes.

I know a few years ago we all did random samples, and I think there was less 
than two per cent where anything showed up, he said.

So it's definitely not a problem in our sport.

If we can prove that and the public sees that, maybe it will put their minds 
at ease more than ours.

Toronto Maple Leafs defenceman Bryan McCabe said he isn't too concerned 
about the drug testing.

Like many players, McCabe took exception to Pound's comments about NHL 
players and said he'd be surprised if there were any positive tests.

I think we've got a pretty clean game here, McCabe said at the Leafs 
practice facility on Sunday. I know for a fact (steroids) aren't (prevalent) 
in our league.

McCabe is a member of the taxi squad for Team Canada's entry at the Olympics 
in Turin, Italy, next month.

He says he's been very careful about what kind of supplements he takes 
because other Olympic athletes have inadvertently tested positive in the 
past after taking over-the-counter drugs.

I take vitamins - that's it, he said. I've got nothing to worry about.

The drug testing program wasn't activated until Sunday because the league 
and the NHL Players' Association wanted time to educate the players and 
teams' medical staffs on substance abuse.

Players will be tested randomly, up to twice a season, for prohibited 
substances such as anabolic steroids and growth hormones, but not stimulants 
such as ephedrine, which is found in some cold medications.

Souray says that's no big deal.

I'm sure there are guys who take Sudafed, but it's probably no different 
than having three or four cups of coffee, he said.

"If guys are on drugs because they're taking a pot of coffee a day, then 
there's going to be a lot of us.

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