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Gatlin could be stripped

22 August 2006
www.gazettelive.co.uk

Justin Gatlin will be stripped of his share of the 100m world record if he is found guilty of a doping offence, the International Amateur Athletics Federation have confirmed.

Gatlin is already facing the prospect of a life ban after testing positive for testosterone at the Kansas Relays in Lawrence on April 22.

And IAAF general secretary Pierre Weiss confirmed: "If Gatlin is confirmed guilty after having produced the two positive tests, the record will be annulled."

Gatlin equalled Asafa Powell's world record of 9.77seconds at the Doha Super Grand Prix on May 12. The record was ratified before it was known he had failed the test three weeks earlier.

Gatlin, the Olympic and world champion, first failed a drugs test five years ago when amphetamines were found in his samples at the USA Junior Championships.

Although the IAAF later accepted he was using the medication to treat Attention Deficit Disorder, it was still registered as a first offence and under the two-strikes rule, Gatlin faces being thrown out of the sport for good.

Weiss added: "We will of course continue to watch closely the cases of Marion Jones and Gatlin, but remembering nothing has yet been proved against them, with the help of the USA Federation."

Jones rushed home from the IAAF Golden League meeting in Zurich last Friday after her `A' sample from the USA Track and Field Championships in June was reported to have contained traces of EPO.

Despite the former double Olympic sprint champion having previously been linked with drugs controversies, she has never failed a test and is protesting her innocence.

Meanwhile Weiss insisted no rift has developed between the IAAF and United States Track and Field (USATF), after they were not officially informed of Gatlin's failed drugs test. USATF knew on June 14 of the Gatlin situation but the IAAF only learned of the offence when the athlete's manager released a statement much later on July 29.

He said: "It was all a genuine mistake."

"They thought USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency) had told us, because have such a good relationship with them."

USATF have now promised in future to advise the IAAF immediately of any athlete who has failed a test and the substance involved.



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