Re: Re: Roger Robinson: Drugs in Running

Welcome! Forums Running Forum Roger Robinson: Drugs in Running Re: Re: Roger Robinson: Drugs in Running



Yes, I agree the more light on the issue the better. I guess I'm uncomfortable talking about doping in sport. I don't like to think about it. That said, sometimes you have to do what's uncomfortable for the best of the sport. I won't accuse anyone individually without evidence but pretending there isn't a systemic problem would be naive at best. That's why I posted this. I think it needs to be talked about, like you stated, in order to get it out in the open so it can be dealt with.

I actually hold little of the blame on the athletes. They are caught in a very difficult situation. They are told essentially get better, in any way possible, or get out of the sport. When doing it the right way isn't enough, what are they left to do? They may feel they don't have a choice. Sponsors are telling them their incomes are on the line, races are telling them they aren't wanted, coaches and various other members of their inner circles might be whispering in their ears that the only way they can accomplish what they need to continue making a living is to take the drugs. Having never been in this position, I can't imagine the pressure one would feel. I'd like to think I'd say no but how can any of us really know what we would say if we've never been in that position?

That said, as you point out, the athletes through their unions could take a stronger stand if they want a clean sport. The TFAA does seem solely focused on sponsorship. Now, I agree with them in many aspects on the sponsorship topic but they could also take a stand that organizations need to take a tougher stand on cleaning up the sport in order to protect the clean athletes. I was just reading an article last night about the NFL and the NFLPA fighting over human growth hormone (HGH) testing. The NFLPA is dragging its feet on HGH testing to the point this writer basically said he can envision a generation of fans growing up between the time an agreement was made to perform HGH testing and testing actually begins to happen. Why? Not because the NFL is dragging its feet. Why is the NFLPA dragging its feet so much if it's concerned about protecting clean athletes? Is it concerned about protecting clean athletes? I don't want to make assumptions but it doesn't look good.

Your story of Hamilton reminds me of what I read recently from Steve Magness about Armstrong. He, of course, was working with Salazar/Nike when Armstrong was doing his running thing and he was tasked by Nike to help Armstrong, which he stated was a very difficult feeling to have. Later, after he moved on to college coach, his team was at a cross country meet where Armstrong would be running. He said he thought about introducing his runners to Armstrong and being the “cool guy” who knows him. Instead, he told them Armstrong was going to be in the race and this was their chance to beat him. They made a pretty big deal of that and were pumped to beat him.