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  • Jones, Former Czechoslovakia Face Allegations


    08/20/06

    <TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=5 align=right border=0> <TBODY> <TR> <TD> <TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 width=150 border=0> <TBODY> <TR> <TD colSpan=2><IMG src="/_images/articles/OldStories/jones9.jpg"></TD></TR> <TR> <TD style="PADDING-RIGHT: 5px; PADDING-LEFT: 5px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 5px; PADDING-TOP: 5px"><SPAN class=caption><B></B></SPAN></TD> <TD width=12>&nbsp;</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE></TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE><BR><B>Jones Faces First Positive Drug Test</B><BR><BR>September 6th is reported to be the date for U.S. sprinter Marion Jones to learn the results of a "B" sample being analyzed after a positive initial test in June at the U.S. Track and Field Championships.<BR><BR>Major newspapers in the U.S. say sources have told them Jones tested positive for the blood-enhancing drug EPO. <BR><BR>If confirmed, the test would be the first for Jones, whose career has been marked with Olympic gold medals and a steady stream of suspicion that her success was linked to drugs. Jones has never failed a drug test.<BR><BR>Her attorney, Rich Nichols, has issued a statement assailing the leak of the test results.<BR><BR>"It is unfortunate that the integrity and the confidentiality of the testing process may have been breached, but Marion Jones has always been clear, she has never taken performance-enhancing substances, not now, not ever," he says.<BR><BR>Jones, 30, is back in the U.S. after suddenly pulling out of the Zurich Weltklasse meet Friday night. <BR><BR>"I smell a rat," Jones' coach Steve Riddick told the San Jose Mercury News in a telephone interview. <BR><BR>"I believe her. I see how hard she works. It would take a dummy to walk into the U.S. nationals - the devil's house - with EPO in your system. I have no other explanation other than that doesn't make sense," Riddick tells reporter Elliot Almond.<BR><BR>There is no comment from the U.S. Olympic Committee, U.S. Anti Doping Agency or the IAAF, which by protocol are not allowed to comment at this stage of the proceedings.<BR><BR>An athlete is not convicted of a doping offense until the results of the "B" sample are received and the ensuing process of disciplinary hearings and possible appeals is ended. <BR><BR>If she is found guilty of doping, Jones could face a two-year ban resulting from a first offense.<BR><BR>Jones is the third U.S. athlete to come under a doping cloud in the past month. Fellow sprinter Justin Gatlin and cyclist Floyd Landis face hearings soon over confirmed "B" samples. <BR><BR>The U.S. Anti Doping Agency says it cannot comment on when the hearings are scheduled. <BR><BR><B>Czechoslovakia Drug Allegations</B><BR><BR>A Czech newspaper says sports officials in the former Czechoslovakia operated a system of doping over the course of more than 10 years. <BR><BR>Mlada Fronta Dnes reports that it has uncovered government documents that show athletes were dosed with steroids, such as nandrolone and stanozolol.<BR><BR>The paper says the program began around 1976 and continued through the 1980's.<BR><BR>"The rational application of anabolic steroids will help contribute to the political promotion of sports in the communist state, and help strengthen the country's prestige," says one report addressed to the Czechoslovak Sports Association that is quoted by the newspaper. <BR><BR>Athletes in weightlifting and athletics as well as the winter sports of hockey and skiing were included in the program. <BR><BR>The newspaper says former discus world record holder thrower Imrich Bugar was shocked to find his name included in the uncovered documents. He insists he had no knowledge he was being doped. He won the silver medal at the 1980 Olympics in Moscow.<BR><BR><B>Your best source of news about the Olympics is www.aroundtherings.com, for subscribers only.</B>