Published: Wed, May 09, 2018
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Kiprop tipped off about doping visit

Kiprop tipped off about doping visit

Asbel Kiprop has denied doping after testing positive. Track and field's anti-doping unit described the officer's actions as "extremely disappointing" and said the IAAF's disciplinary tribunal will determine whether the tip-off rendered the test invalid.

Kiprop originally came second in the 1500m final at the 2008 Beijing Olympics but was upgraded when Rashid Ramzi tested positive for a performance-enhancing drug and was stripped of the gold medal.

However, he appeared to suggest it might be the banned blood-boosting hormone EPO, saying: "I am told EPO is put into the body using injection".

Out-of-competition tests are meant to be a surprise for athletes, to maximise the chances of catching cheats and to leave them no time to flush any banned substances out of their system. "The achievements I made are crumbling before my own eyes, for a crime that I have not committed", Kiprop said.

In a text message from his phone that also was posted on a WhatsApp group, the 2008 Olympic champion wrote: "I hope I can prove that I am a clean athlete in every way possible".

"At that time I did not see the money as inducement or bribe or anything". "In retrospect I now clearly see the money as having a relation with the sample collected on that date, and even the irregular advance notice I was given". Track's anti-doping unit would not comment on the report.

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) has confirmed the rumors that four-time global champion Asbel Kiprop produced a positive test for EPO, and also responded to Kiprop's bewildering Facebook statement that alleges he was extorted by anti-doping officials and the integrity of his sample was possibly compromised by the same men.

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There have always been concerns about the quality of anti-doping in Kenya.

Dozens of Kenyans have tested positive for an array of doping substances in recent years.

Like four other elite Kenyan runners who also failed doping tests, Kiprop worked with Italian agent Federico Rosa. "On March 16, 2018, Mr Kiprop was charged with violations of the IAAF Anti-Doping Rules and the matter is now proceeding before the independent IAAF Disciplinary Tribunal", the AIU said in a statement. It said the tip-off should not invalidate the test result because it "could not reasonably have caused EPO to be present in Mr. Kiprop's sample".

Kiprop insists he did not dope, and said his sample might have been tampered with.

The AIU said Kiprop had been given advance notice which contravenes the World Anti-Doping Agency's guidelines stating that out-of-competition tests should be conducted without prior notice to athletes.

To this, the AIUI wrote simply that the organization "is satisfied there has been no mix up or tampering with the Sample". He said he refused. "The AIU has fully adhered to the principle of confidentiality throughout", it said.

"This is standard practice (and) any suggestion that there was anything improper about this conversation is categorically untrue".

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