Doping claims harming reputations of all athletes – Kenya's Kipsang

Aug 10, 2015 With the recent outcry over doping by athletes, former marathon world record holder, Wilson Kipsang says the reputations of all Kenyan runners will be hit by fresh doping claims in the media.

British Newspaper, Sunday Times and German broadcaster ARD/WDR said they were given access to more than 12,000 blood tests results with over 800 athletes suspected of doping and reports suggest that 77 of the 800 were Kenyan athletes.

The world governing body for athletics (IAAF) immediately lodged a statement strongly denying the allegations.

Adding to that, Wilson Kipsang said that the claims of widespread doping among Kenyan runners will not scare them ahead of the world championships in Beijing later this month.

“Those are just allegations. And for a country like Kenya, which has been participating very well in world championships, Olympics, you find that that one will not really scare athletes so much, And I think we shall continue preparing very well and focus for the world championships because if you try to see, it looks like they are people who are trying to damage the whole sport. Because when somebody says that Kenyan athletes are using doping, who in particular?…So, I think for somebody like me, I want to say that we want to be very strict on people who are just coming up with lots of allegations without substantial facts.”

2011 London Marathon winner Emmanuel Mutai has said officials need to name the athletes suspected of doping, as everyone is tarnished with the same brush.

“All the time they talk about Kenyan athletes, but you know it’s better to be specific, so that to know who or which athletes are being caught by the doping so that they clear the names of the other athletes…Because if they generalize all the athletes, also the image of the Kenyan athlete will not be in a good position or will damage the image of the Kenyan athletes who are clean in sports”

Kenya’s best known runner and 800m Olympic champion, David Rudisha, has said that Athletics Kenya (AK) should do more to rid the sport of drugs cheats as persistent doping claims will effectively tarnish the reputations of clean Kenyan runners.

In response to that, the Athletics Kenya (AK) said it has been working closely with IAAF, the World Anti-Doping Agency and the Kenyan government to counter the scourge.

“For the top athletes who have been running and their tests have been carried out and are found to be clean, I want to tell them that trust our performances because we have been running lots of races,” Kipsang added.

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