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  • Athletics Integrity Unit Announces Summary of IAAF World Championships London 2017 Program


    The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) today announces a summary of the programme it conducted at the IAAF World Championships London 2017.

    Sunday 13 August represented the final session of the IAAF World Championships London 2017, and also marked the conclusion of the extensive three-part Championships programme enacted by the AIU, which consisted of anti-doping and betting monitoring programmes, and an education outreach initiative.

    “The Athletics Integrity Unit is pleased to have conducted such a successful three-part programme at London 2017,” said AIU Head, Brett Clothier. “Throughout the Championships, it was evident that there was a strong, positive reaction from athletes and their support teams to the work of the AIU. It was hugely satisfying to see that athletes have a real thirst to gain knowledge of integrity-related issues and to learn how they can better help uphold the right values of the sport. The AIU will build on this, and work with athletes so that they can help shape the future of their sport,” added Clothier.

    Anti-Doping Program

    The AIU today announces that for its Championships anti-doping programme, a total of 1,513 blood and urine samples were collected and analysed during the pre-competition (from 31 July) and in-competition (from 4 August) testing periods.

    596 urine samples collected including 212 samples analysed for the detection of EPO
    917 blood samples collected including 725 for profiling purposes in the context of the Athlete Biological Passport and 192 for the detection of Human Growth Hormone and erythropoiesis stimulating agents.

    As of 23 August 2017, the WADA-accredited laboratory in Ghent, Belgium (responsible for analysing all Championships samples) has advised that all analyses have now been completed. The analyses resulted in three (3) adverse analytical findings which are now being investigated. None of the adverse findings relate to medalists at the Championships. The AIU will not make any further comment at this stage, but in all cases will publicly disclose appropriate details at relevant points of the disciplinary process, in accordance with the IAAF Anti-Doping Rules and AIU policy.

    As announced by the AIU and the Local Organising Committee prior to the Championships, the anti-doping programme was comprehensive and intelligence-based, aimed at both detecting and deterring athlete doping. The key to the programme was the intelligence-led out-of-competition testing strategy enacted in the 10 months prior to the Championships, with testing targeted at athletes likely to compete in London. This 10-month out-of-competition testing period – which included over 2,000 blood tests and approximately 3,000 urine tests - was a cornerstone of the anti-doping programme with no advance notice of testing given to athletes. The AIU also collaborated with federations and National Anti-Doping Organisations (NADOs) to ensure that its own out-of-competition testing would be maximised, and to concentrate on filling the gaps where no effective national testing programs exist.

    Capitalising on the 10-year statute of limitations set out in the World Anti-Doping Code (Code), the AIU continued the strategy first initiated by the IAAF at the World Championships in Helsinki in 2005, in which all samples collected at the event were transferred to, and stored in, a dedicated and secure facility for the purpose of re-testing at a later date after the initial analyses. To-date, the re-testing policy established by the IAAF in 2005 has resulted in 27 positive cases.

    As part of its strategy to be a forward-thinking organisation that adopts new technological trends, the AIU also replaced the traditional paper-based collection of doping control data with a more streamlined, harmonized and ‘real-time’ paperless process supported by established technology. The paperless process reduces the possibility of human error and increases effectiveness of the doping control process.

    The AIU would like to particularly thank and acknowledge the work of the Local Organising Committee and the German company PWC for the collection of samples and the work of WADA-accredited laboratories in Ghent, and Dresden (mobile unit) for their respective roles with the Championships anti-doping programme.

    Betting Monitoring Programme

    The AIU entered a strategic partnership with the British Gambling Commission to manage reports of suspicious betting activity in connection with the Championships. Under the arrangements of the partnership, any reported suspicious or irregular betting activity related to the Championships was investigated by the AIU, with disciplinary proceedings to be brought if necessary under the Integrity Code of Conduct. The AIU worked principally with the Sports Betting Intelligence Unit of Britain’s Gambling Commission with whom formal information sharing protocols were already established. Arrangements were also in place to share information with the UK's criminal authorities where potential breaches of criminal law were identified.

    No concerns related to betting activity were reported to the AIU by the British Gambling Commission during the Championships.

    Education and Prevention Outreach Program

    A joint Education and Prevention Outreach Campaign was carried out in London for the duration of the Championships under the Clean Athletics programme of the host Federation. The education programme for athletes and support personnel was organised at the team hotels and competition venue.

    Of particular note was the success of the joint AIU-IAAF Athletes’ Commission initiative, the Athletes’ Integrity Pledge which was signed by approximately 2,500 athletes, support personnel and administrators during the Championships. A further 4,000 Athletes’ Integrity Pledge wristbands were distributed to athletes during the Championships, many of whom promoted the ‘Stand Tall, Speak Up!’ message on their social media channels. More than 630 Athletes, support personnel, administrators and fans also took part in an AIU Athlete Survey designed to collect views on integrity in the sport of athletics.

    For more information, please contact: 

    AIU Media Office
    T: +33 (0) 6 40 61 56 37

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