Let’s start this piece with a number, say…107!!! Those of you following the London Games (opening ceremonies tonight) and the stories of doping that are almost a virtual certainty with elite level athletes these days, probably know what this number represents.
If not, well…107 is the number of “hopeful” Olympic athletes who have been caught using illegal PED’s by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). The ones already banned from the games before they’ve even started. At least that is the report out of several available news sources out this week (USA Today, Reuters, etc.).
Now it is true (as stated in both pieces by WADA’s President John Fahey) that there is no way to tell how many of that 107 would have actually qualified for these games. That is if they had not been caught. However, it is a safe bet that some of them would likely have made the games.
Yes, that bubble you heard bursting was the Olympic dreams these cheaters HAD―poof, gone!!! And they certainly won’t get any sympathy from me, not even a little. In fact, it is nice to see WADA stepping up its game big time as they not only have increased the effectiveness of their tests, but also combined efforts with other organizations to oust dopers, and are testing a lot more athletes for these games than in the past.
The Reuters piece, linked above, states that there will be approximately 6,250 samples analyzed at the Games in London. That’s a lot of tests, and a heck of a lot of athletes being tested.
It is going to be an interesting Olympics, these summer London games. I, for one, have been looking forward to it for the last four years. From my perspective it is THE sporting event to watch. Bigger than the Super Bowl, NBA Championships, or World Cup.
And let’s hope that the gold, silver and bronze medals handed out in 2012 go to “real” champions, not the facsimile of such―dopers. It would certainly be nice to be able to call all of them True Champions. I’m pretty sure WADA would like to see that happen. I know I would.
Let the Games begin!!!