With only 2 days to go 9 athletes have tested positive for doping violations and have been sent home. 9 athletes gone and the games have not started officially as yet. Events the size of the games will always have problems associated with it and London 2012 is not special as it has a few problems to deal with on a day to day basis- the olympic lane and the taxi cabs, the right to protest from protestors who are silenced by the police , the weather and we know how the Brits can be sarcastic with all the fuss in their city for the next 2 weeks. Yes there are and will be daily problems to deal with. But the much ballyhooed WADA did not expect to deal with its problems so early.
The 2012 Olympics has been touted to have the best anti doping testing ever in the history of the games. I witnessed a recent documentary of the anti- doping state of the art facilities for London and even I was impressed. It gave me the shivers just looking at the procedures. So why would an athlete even consider taking drugs and think that they would not be caught? Why take the risk? There are a lot of answers and frankly we will never know the real reason. There will be the usual “I did not know” or “I did not willingly take any drugs” excuses but the fact is you were caught.
The problem is not all athletes will undergo this testing. Athletes in what is called the high risk sports will definitely undergo the testing. That means OUR ATHLETES, all of them will be going through not one but probably a test a day in London. We can hardly forget Usain Bolt’s statement that he and his fellow team mates underwent so many testing in Beijing they could not find their main artery after all the blood test done. This is what makes the system a double standard.
If WADA is to be fair and by extension the London Olympic committee and the IOC then surely to combat this drug problem plaguing the sport every athlete professional and amateur should be required to have a biological passport that will be used for tests and guarantees against drugs .An athlete biological passport is an individual, electronic record for professional athletes, in which profiles of biological markers of doping and results of doping tests are collated over a period of time. Doping violations can be detected by noting variances from an athlete’s established levels outside permissible limits, rather than testing for and identifying illegal substances. Similar to a persons travel passport this bio passport will be used as one of the major determinant of the athletes history.And everyone should be checked and cleared BEFORE , DURING the AFTER the games.
Will it be more intensive, yes. Will it require more resources , probably. But the end justifies the means and save from all the scandal and embarrasment it would level the playing field and prevent someone from thinking they can beat the system.
The games of London is poised with all sorts of possibilities. It could top Beijing in terms of quality of performances. It could be the breakout games for a lot of top athletes and new ones too. It could see more world records broken. All this is based on COULD. But if this news is any indication of what the London games is metamorphing to be then we had better brace ourselves. We could be in for a bumpy and drugy ride.