International Athletics

Doping claims 'knowingly false'

2015-06-09 13:43
Mo Farah (File)

London - American track coach Alberto Salazar declared on Tuesday that people accusing him of contravening doping rules are "knowingly making false statements", adding that he denies "all allegations of doping".

A BBC/ProPublica documentary broadcast last week alleged that Salazar, who coaches British distance great Mo Farah, gave American runner Galen Rupp the banned anabolic steroid testosterone when Rupp was a teenager.

There is no suggestion that double world and Olympic champion Farah -- who trains with Rupp -- has broken doping rules, but he withdrew from Sunday's Birmingham Diamond League meeting, saying he felt "drained" by the affair.

"I have said all along that I believe in a clean sport, hard work and I deny all allegations of doping," Salazar, who runs Nike's Oregon Project training camp, said in a statement sent to The Guardian.

"The BBC and ProPublica have engaged in inaccurate and unfounded journalism, with a complete lack of regard for both Galen and Mo.

"Given the time and effort the BBC and ProPublica committed to making these false allegations, I hope that media and fans will afford me a short time to show the accusers are knowingly making false statements.

"I will document and present the facts as quickly as I can so that Galen and Mo can focus on doing what they love and have worked so hard to achieve."

The documentary also alleged that Salazar encouraged Rupp - who finished second to Farah in the 10 000 metres at the 2012 London Olympics - to exploit rules regarding the use of intravenous drips.

The World Anti-doping Agency (WADA) said that the United States Anti-doping Authority (USADA) and world governing body the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) would have to look into the claims.

British governing body UK Athletics (UKA), with which Salazar works as an unpaid consultant, revealed on Monday that it will re-examine Farah's medical data for any evidence of doping.

UKA chairman Ed Warner told BBC radio that even if doping allegations against Salazar were not proven, "we might still recommend to Mo and might still decide ourselves to suspend our relationship (with Salazar) because of the reputational damage that could be caused".

Farah has flown to the United States, where he is expected to hold talks with Salazar, a three-time winner of the New York Marathon during his own running career.

Speaking prior to his withdrawal from the Birmingham event, Farah had said: "I'm not leaving Alberto, for the reason I've not seen any clear evidence."

Farah, 32, began working with 56-year-old Salazar in 2011 and has since done the double in the 5 000 and 10 000 metres at the Olympics, the World Championships and the European Championships.

Read more on:    athletics
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