Pound’s drug remark about Jamaican athletes rubbished

August 15th, 2012 - 12:54 pm ICT by IANS  

Kingston (Jamaica), Aug 15 (IANS/CMC) Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCo) has rubbished a claim by International Olympic Committee (IOC) member Dick Pound that it is difficult to test Jamaican athletes because they are hard to find.

Following a marathon meeting of the board of JADCo Monday, chairman Winston Davidson described Pound’s claims as “a vicious attack on a small country,” reports CMC.

“What Pound said was blatantly false. We knew it was spurious, but we spent the whole day trying to find evidence of it. We don’t think they would do this to America and other bigger countries. It is a vicious attack on a small country,” Davidson said.

Pound, who is also a former chief of the World Anti-Doping Agency, told Reuters Television Saturday that Jamaican athletes belong to “one of the groups that are hard to test”.

Asked if he was happy with the way Jamaica tested its athletes, Pound said: “No, they are one of the groups that are hard to test, it is (hard) to get in and find them and so forth.”

“I think they can expect, with the extraordinary results that they have had, that they will be on everybody’s radar.”

In a release late Monday, JADCo said it has never received any complaints regarding the athletes not being found for testing.

“This is confirmed by the fact that the WADA database (Anti-Doping Administration and Management System - ADAMS), holding such information of all tests and missed tests, does not confirm his allegation,” the commission said.

“In addition, JADCo has never received any complaints regarding the athletes not being found for testing.”

JADCo was also concerned at former American sprinter Carl Lewis questioning Jamaica’s testing system, following Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce’s successful defence of their 100 metres titles.

JADCo said it was acutely aware that the Jamaican athletes, by their high level of performance, will attract the attention of the world.

“Therefore, every track and field athlete representing Jamaica at the recent Olympics was tested in-competition in June 2012. In conjunction with the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), elite athletes were tested more than once. All results were negative,” JADCo said.

In the days just before the start of the London Olympics, word out of the Jamaican camp was that the island’s athletes were being subjected to extraordinarily frequent testing. Sprinter Asafa Powell was said to have been tested thrice in a week.”

Jamaica’s athletes dominated the sprint events for the second successive Olympic Games, with Usain Bolt defending his 100m and 200m crowns. His teammate Yohan Blake was placed second in the 100m, as well as in the 200m which the Jamaicans swept with Warren Weir placed third.

The Jamaican men also defended their 4×100m title, lowering the world record they set in Beijing four years ago to 36.84 seconds last Saturday night.

In the women’s events, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce repeated her 100m victory ahead of Veronica Campbell Brown, who placed third. Fraser-Pryce also placed second in the 200m before partnering with Campbell Brown, Sherone Simpson and Kerron Stewart to take silver in the 4×100m.

Bronze medals were won by Jamaica’s women’s 4×400m team and by Hansle Parchment in the 110m hurdles.

Pound, a Canadian attorney who specialises in tax law, earned his undergraduate and law degrees at McGill University in Montreal.

He was one of the prime candidates to succeed Juan Antonio Samaranch as IOC president in 2001, but lost to Jacques Rogge. After that election, he resigned as chairman of the IOC Finance Commission.

He was also the chairman of the IOC commission that oversaw the Olympic Bribery Scandal in 1999, and was the first chairman of WADA, a post to which he was re-elected in 2004, serving through 2007.

Pound is regarded as the most influential IOC member who has never succeeded to the IOC presidency.


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