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The new World Anti-Doping Code is around the corner, but it’s not likely to help anyone. Nils Z

Tougher rules on drugs in sport won’t help detect more doping

Professor Arnold Beckett, an English chemist and longstanding member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), played a leading role in developing tests to detect drug misuse in sports during the 1960s…
Essendon faces the prospect of not being able to field a team next year. AAP Image/Julian Smith

ASADA v Essendon: next steps for the winners and losers

Federal Court Justice John Middleton’s decision to uphold the legality of the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA) investigation into the potential use of banned substances at the Essendon Football…
That one needs more galloping powder. EPA

No, the Queen isn’t doping her prized racehorses

Exciting news from the world of horseracing: the Queen’s racehorse Estimate has tested positive for morphine. With the Lance Armstrong and Tyson Gay doping scandals fresh in their minds, reporters are…
FIFA’s chief medical officer is adamant there’s no doping in football … but experience says otherwise. Gabriel Corbacho Bermejo/Flickr

Doping in football – does it make the game any less beautiful?

It is often said that football is the beautiful game, resistant to the kinds of doping seen in cycling, baseball or less beautiful games of the same name. Much like Australia’s confidence before its “blackest…
We’ve heard about high-profile dopers, such as ex-pro cyclist Tyler Hamilton, but the cheating culture in cycling goes deeper. Luis Tejido/AAP

If cheating is ‘normal’ in cycling, how can we build integrity?

“Integrity” is currently the buzzword around Australian sport policy-making. An integrity in sport forum, co-convened by the Sport Australia Hall of Fame (SOHAF) and Victoria University in Melbourne this…
Will Essendon players face sanction if it is proven that they took banned substances during the 2012 AFL season? AAP/Joe Castro

What happens if Essendon players are issued ‘show cause’ notices?

Speculation continues to mount that Essendon Football Club players will face sanctions from the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA) over the club’s controversial 2011-12 supplements program…
Kaetlyn Osmond of Canada had to undergo an unannounced doping test hours before performing. Ivan Sekretarev/AP

A drug-free Olympics could be Sochi’s antidote to a bad image

Since anti-doping tests were introduced at the 1968 Grenoble Winter Olympics there have only been 20 positive drug tests in Winter Olympic competition. Compared to the Summer Olympics, which has more athletes…
Russian biathlete Olga Medvedtseva was the only athlete to test positive to a banned substance in the 2006 Turin Winter Olympics. EPA/Gero Breloer

Higher, faster … cleaner? Doping and the Winter Olympics

A quick look at Wikipedia shows that Winter Olympians test positive for doping at a far lower rate than their Summer Olympic counterparts. The past two Summer Olympics (London and Beijing) saw 34 drug…
The former 100m world record holder tested positive for a banned stimulant last June. Matt Slocum/AP

Asafa Powell may be guilty of doping but he’s also a victim

As Asafa Powell faces the Jamaica Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel, we already know his defence – that he was given a supplement called Epiphany D1 by his former physiotherapist, Chris Xuereb, without his…
Some people use steroids to enhance their physical appearance, others to boost their sporting or work performance. Flickr/Istolethetv

Clean syringe programs must also cater for steroid users

The use of performance- and image-enhancing drugs such as steroids is on the rise in Australia, with more users accessing sterile injecting equipment from needle and syringe programs (NSPs). Between 1995…
It looks likely to be lawyers at ten paces as Essendon and the AFL head to court over the supplements scandal. AAP/Julian Smith

Essendon vs the AFL: what are the legal issues?

The only real winners in the whole Essendon drug supplement saga are set to be the lawyers. With all parties “lawyering up” and multiple court actions either under way or threatened, legal eagles will…
The alleged “supplements program” at Essendon Football club raises many questions. David Crosling/AAP

Supplementary reading: why was there no red flag at Essendon?

The notice of charges by the AFL against Essendon Football Club has been published, and we have dealt elsewhere with some of the facts of the matter. But some harder questions remain. What does this list…
Dr Frankenstein created a beast of horrifying power; Essendon just created a shambles. Image from shutterstock.com

Frankenfooty: Essendon’s mixed bag of supplements

The list of charges by the AFL against the Essendon Football Club for its alleged supplements program makes for compelling reading. Early on in the Essendon charge sheet is this paragraph, which sets the…
Essendon coach James Hird, along with his club and three other senior officials, have been charged by the AFL over the supplements saga. AAP Image/Julian Smith

The Essendon supplements saga: what you don’t know can hurt you

The idiom “what you don’t know can’t hurt you” usually means the less you know about the possible risks and harms that can befall you, the less likely you are to worry yourself sick about them. The recently…
Anti-doping is about protecting the integrity of sport, but what about the people? ĐāżŦ {mostly absent}

AFL, NRL – it’s time to move on from anti-doping

With the AFL and NRL “doping scandals” grinding on it seems there’s no end in sight to this saga. But there should be – and soon. Anti-doping will never work and should be replaced with a different approach…
Catching all dopers would be an expensive exercise, running into tens of millions of dollars. EPA/Dominic Favre

Exposing dopers in sport: is it really worth the cost?

On the back of an interim report by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA) into the Essendon Football Club’s controversial supplements program in 2011-12, the AFL last night charged the club…
Cyclist Stuart O'Grady’s admission to doping is an important moment in Australian sport. Ben Macmahon/AAP

Dopers like O’Grady should pay, even if they’re good blokes

Recently retired professional cyclist Stuart O’Grady is the latest elite Australian sportsperson to confess publicly to doping during his career. He admitted last week to using the banned blood oxygen…
World champion sprinters Tyson Gay (centre) and Asafa Powell (right) have tested positive to the banned substance oxilofrine. EPA/Peter Klaunzer

We know Tyson Gay and Asafa Powell … but what’s oxilofrine?

American sprinter Tyson Gay and former 100m world record-holder Jamaican Asafa Powell are reported to be among six athletes to test positive for a banned substance: oxilofrine. But what is this drug that…

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