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Wider spread than I would have guessed...(2 posts)

Wider spread than I would have guessed...PT
Apr 25, 2002 1:56 PM
A national calibre X-C skier passed this on to me. It probably explains why she isn't an international calibre X-C skier.


EPO use hit new heights in Salt Lake

Duncan Mackay
Wednesday April 10, 2002
The Guardian

As many as 100 drugs tests at the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City showed
traces of the banned performance-enhancing drug erythropoietin, known as
EPO, an Olympic official revealed yesterday.
However, almost all those suspected of having cheated avoided sanctions
because the test was not sophisticated enough to prove beyond doubt they had
been using the drug.

"The amount of people using EPO was frightening and confirmed our worst
fears," a senior International Olympic Committee official said. "But there
was absolutely nothing we could do about it."

For the first time all endurance athletes were tested for EPO during the
games in February. They underwent a combined blood-urine test that in many
cases suggested they had taken the drug but had stopped several days before
they were due to compete.

"Legally, the results would not have stood up because EPO disappears from
the body very, very fast," said the IOC official. "We were just delighted to
have made an example of the ones we caught."

Officials are unsure which competitors actually showed traces of the
stimulant because unless a sample tested positive it was not linked to the
athlete who gave it. In other words, one athlete competing in several events
could have produced more than one sample showing traces of EPO.

Salt Lake City organisers conducted 1,000 tests for EPO and were able to
celebrate after announcing three positive results, all involving
cross-country skiers who were found to have taken darbepoetin, a new form of

One of the most widely abused drugs in sports, EPO enhances endurance by
stimulating the production of oxygen-carrying red blood cells. It has been
linked particularly with cycling and long-distance running.
Hmph...that is NOT what I thought this thread would be about.Ahimsa
Apr 25, 2002 2:18 PM
Oh well.

Shame really.

A. (Randy)