I'm Over It

I am so tired of doping stories dominating athletics news.  It’s another form of stealing. First they steal the win, now they are stealing the limelight.  It is frustrating to see so much press time devoted to the same boring story line, because it takes away from the positive stories we should be talking about. 

Like Markus Rehm. 

Markus Rehm. Amputee world record holder with leap of 8.24m

Markus Rehm. Amputee world record holder with leap of 8.24m

Markus is a single leg amputee who recorded an astonishing 8.24m jump in the 2014 German National Champs.  To put this into perspective, Greg Rutherford jumped 8.20m to win Gold at the Commonwealth Games.  This jump would have won Markus silver in the London 2012 Olympics.

The world couldn't get enough of the fact that double amputee Oscar Pistorius was able to hold his own in an able bodied 400m race.  They extolled his Olympic semi-final effort.  But Markus is the first amputee in the history of athletics to actually record a result that could see a podium finish in an able bodied final. 

Who cares about Justin Gatlin - HOW IS THE ATHLETIC WORLD NOT TALKING ABOUT THIS? 

Markus was not selected for the German European 2014 Champs team because there was concern that his blade may provide a competitive advantage.  More investigation was needed.  This article provides more details: http://espn.go.com/olympics/trackandfield/story/_/id/11285062/german-federation-drops-amputee-long-jumper-markus-rehm-team.

A recent study by the University of Oslo has concluded that “muscles can retain the advantages given by anabolic steroids decades after the point at which they were taken.” More details can be found here:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/athletics/29510575.

Why are former “chemical” dopers given the benefit of doubt and allowed to compete while accused “technological” dopers are denied the opportunity until it can be 100% proved a blade does not confer a special advantage?

I am not sure what the answer is for either case, but again, how is the athletic world not obsessed with Markus Rehm?

Stop elevating the profiles of intentional dopers: stop nominating them for awards, stop writing about them in the press.  Let’s focus on rewarding athletes trying to achieve their goals with character and integrity.