Olympic champion Ruth Jebet among over 100 facing doping proceedings


Bahrain's Ruth Jebet competes during the Women's 3000m Steeplechase of the Athletics events at the ...
Bahrain's Ruth Jebet competes during the Women's 3000m Steeplechase of the Athletics events at the Baku 2017 4th Islamic Solidarity Games at the Olympic Stadium in Baku on May 17, 2017.

In Summary

  • The steeplechase world record holder and Olympic gold medallist, Ruth Jebet, is among more than 100 track and field athletes and coaches who are facing disciplinary proceedings for doping offences, the Athletics Integrity Unit has announced.
  • Also on the list of athletes subject to proceedings is Violah Jepchumba, who has run the third-fastest half marathon in history, and for the first time is revealed to be fighting a four-year ban for doping offences.

The steeplechase world record holder and Olympic gold medallist, Ruth Jebet, is among more than 100 track and field athletes and coaches who are facing disciplinary proceedings for doping offences, the Athletics Integrity Unit has announced.

In March the Guardian carried a report that the 21-year-old Jebet, who competes for Bahrain and was hailed as Golden Ruth when she won the women’s 3,000m steeplechase at Rio, had tested positive for the blood booster EPO. However this is the first official confirmation that disciplinary proceedings are being pursued, which comes as part of a new drive by the AIU to introduce greater transparency in the sport.

Also on the list of athletes subject to proceedings is Violah Jepchumba, who has run the third-fastest half marathon in history, and for the first time is revealed to be fighting a four-year ban for doping offences.

Meanwhile the Austrian race agent Robert Wagner, who has occasionally represented Justin Gatlin and the sprinter’s former coach Dennis Mitchell, is also being investigated after telling the Daily Telegraph he could obtain human growth hormone and testosterone in exchange for $250,000.

Brett Clothier, the head of the AIU, said from now on disciplinary cases involving athletes would be published on its website and tweeted out, as part of a drive towards greater transparency.

“Previously the IAAF would only release information when it was final and binding but that disciplinary process could take up to four years,” he said. “The feedback from athletes and the public was they hated it when their people suddenly disappeared and they had no way of knowing why.”

The AIU’s disciplinary list contains winners of 85 Olympic and world championship medals – the majority of whom are Russians implicated in the second McLaren report of December 2016. However Clothier said it is not widely known that they are working to bring these cases to a successful prosecution.

The Australian also insisted the AIU, which was established last year with 17 staff, was determined to catch more drugs cheats. “What people can take heart from is that the IAAF has created an independent unit, invested in it heavily and that we are going to get things done without fear and favour.

“One of the key things we have done in building our team is to have an investigations unit with five officers, who have the specialist skills to conduct investigations and build a network in all the continents in the world.

“Over the next 12 months I would expect to see more investigative and more non-doping cases. We want to uncover the networks behind doping and expose them.”

-Courtesy The Guardian

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