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It is 20 years since Ben Johnson was stripped of his 100m gold medal and thrown out of the Seoul Olympics for using performance enhancing drugs.

There were drug stories before, and there have been plenty since, but none made the impact that his did in 1988.

I spoke to him about what has since become known as the dirtiest race in history as Carl Lewis, who was promoted to gold, had failed three drugs tests at the 1988 US Olympic trials, while Britain's silver medallist Linford Christie also failed a drugs test later in his career.

(l-r) Ben Johnson, Calvin Smith, Linford Christie and Carl Lewis in the 100m at the 1988 Seoul Olympics

Johnson gave a compelling interview.

He gets quite personal about Lewis, but the two never had the greatest relationship and it's pretty strong stuff.

He alluded to the fact that if testing was better back then he might not have taken drugs.

He also said he was surprised when his positive drugs test came back for stanazolol, when he only took other drugs.

There are the same conspiracy theories that were doing the rounds back then, but they ring more true now and people are more prepared to believe the stories.

The impression was that the individual athletics federations weren't as keen to catch their high profile athletes and that he was castigated and victimised because of what happened.

There were times when I had to remind him that he did take drugs, but when I finished speaking to him, I wasn't sure how I felt.

I had some sympathy for what he was saying and understood it from that point of view, but he also did the sport irreparable damage.

If you were involved in the sport this was not a new story and I wasn't surprised when I found out he had tested positive, but it wasn't that I suspected him more or less than anyone else, more that everyone knew it was going on.

It was the first time the general public really woke up to what was going on - never before had such a high profile athlete, in such a high profile race been caught out.

I also spoke to Johnson about his slightly different view of events to those which came to light in his former coach Charlie Francis' book Speed Trap, which gives a bit more of an edge to the interview.

Steve Cram was talking to BBC Sport's Peter Scrivener. The dirtiest race in history will be broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on Saturday, 19 July at 2000 BST.

Steve Cram won a silver medal in the 1500m at the 1984 Olympics and is now a BBC presenter. Our FAQs should answer any questions you have.


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  • 1. At 10:54am on 18 Jul 2008, jagdriver wrote:

    What's this - Cram getting his retaliation in first - for the time when Chambers wins his case, is included in the UK Olympics Team and Cram looks like the reactionary fool that he is.

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  • 2. At 11:36am on 18 Jul 2008, Hinders93 wrote:

    Now who looks like a fool, jagdriver.......

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  • 3. At 12:23pm on 18 Jul 2008, billnanson wrote:

    well jagdriver (hahaha) - serves you right for having a go at a national institution!

    [One of GB's greatst sporting highlights in LA; Coe, Cram and Ovett - shoulder to shoulder in places 1-3 on lap 3. Shame we were denied the proper showdown by Ovett's illness - I convinced it could have been Lord Ovett in different circumstances - but I can't quite picture him with William Hague - then there was his best world record by pipping Aouita, best because it was a real race!]

    I though Moynehan's comment was succint "nobody found guilty of serious drug-cheating offences should have the honour of wearing GB vests at the Olympic Games". It may hurt team GB's medal chances, but it will make the team stronger...

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  • 4. At 12:27pm on 18 Jul 2008, The Marvellous Mechanical Mouth Organ wrote:

    Lord Moynehan and "honour". Umm!

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  • 5. At 12:39pm on 18 Jul 2008, billnanson wrote:

    go with the sentimet Cherwell, not the man ;-)

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  • 6. At 12:56pm on 18 Jul 2008, mwmonk wrote:

    Am I the only person who finds it unsusal that a whole host of former white atheletes have been lining up to attack Chambers and call him a cheat (Cram, Backley, McColgan)?

    It smacks a little bit of 'racism' - I think these whiter-than-white commentators would have had a differnt stance if Chambers had been called Sebastian and had gone to Eton.

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  • 7. At 1:06pm on 18 Jul 2008, billnanson wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 8. At 1:13pm on 18 Jul 2008, lukesenior wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 9. At 1:28pm on 18 Jul 2008, Top Balcony Blue - Nil Satis Nisi Optimum wrote:

    I am pleased that Chambers lost the appeal on a number of grounds :-

    1 It sends out a proper message that we don't want cheats to prosper.

    2 I did not even understand the basis of the appeal. How could a ban for the Olympics be a "unfair restraint of trade"?. He is not banned from the Golden league meetings where most athletes earn their dosh. The Olympics lead to greater exposure, but he knew the rules and he broke them.

    3 He did not "come clean" - their whole training group were shopped, he just admitted it when asked.

    4 If he'd made a career at American Football or Rugby League, he would not have been bothered.

    It has got nothing to do with the colour of his skin either.

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  • 10. At 1:38pm on 18 Jul 2008, smurf316 wrote:

    I actually wanted Dwain to compete as he is our best chance of seeing a Brit in a sprint final. But to say it's only whiter than white ex athletes is a ridiculous comment. Daley Thompson was quoted "he's a cheating b*stard who shouldn't be allowed to complete".
    Why would you try to play the race card mwmonk?

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  • 11. At 2:04pm on 18 Jul 2008, Jan99 wrote:

    Mwmonk - I think Colin Jackson was also adamant that Chambers ban should stay and he isn't a white Old Etonian. It's got nought to do with race - just a dislike of cheats.

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  • 12. At 2:13pm on 18 Jul 2008, alexwilson82 wrote:

    Is anyone else concerned that we'll NEVER eradicate racism from sport whilst idiots like mwmonk are around? The minute something happens against a black sportsman, it's because of his race and not the fact that he's done something wrong?

    I feel that racism will always exist so long as ethnic minorities and the politically correct brigade continue to use it as an excuse, rather than looking beyond the fact that maybe they've been treated the way they have due to other extenuating factors.

    Sorry for the rant, but it really annoys me when people play the racist card for no reason.

    On the actual subject, I feel a bit sorry for Dwain Chambers, because lifting his competitive ban, but suspending him from the Olympics is a bit of a mixed message - either ban him outright, or make him serve a ban and then allow him back to compete in all competitions...

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  • 13. At 2:17pm on 18 Jul 2008, cam4sport wrote:

    The real shame is that it is only a by-law in the UK that prevents drug cheats from competing. This should be the automatic result for failing drug tests, regardless of where an athlete calls home.

    Furthermore, the authorities should begin to keep samples for a longer period and then back test when new tests are developed. Tests will always be a year behind the drug users (you cant test for an uninvented drug!) but this way cheats would still be caught. Life bans should then follow. A short period of carnage would follow with lots of bans and scandals but in time clean athlete would finnally have a chance.

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  • 14. At 2:20pm on 18 Jul 2008, Shire_Gas wrote:

    Since he was the then Sports Minister who tarred all football supporters as hooligans, tried to bring in compulsory ID cards for anyone who wanted to attend a football match and England and Wales and then staged a one man pitch invasion at the Olympic Hockey final in 1988 I will always take Moynihan's comments with at least a healthy pinch of salt.

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  • 15. At 2:21pm on 18 Jul 2008, jolshopsatoxfam wrote:

    Cram - sorry to say this but you are one of the most awful pundits and sports journalists around. You opinions are are generally based on a polarization of opinion. I lose count of the amount of times, say, you criticise athletes in heats for not running quick enough, then in the very next race you will then slate an athlete for running too fast in a heat!!! Your views are absolutely worthless, its unfortunate that just because you were a world class athlete you seem to think that your opinions are similarly valuable - they are not. You are completely out of touch, and you live in a hype driven media bubble.

    I remember the shock and amazement on your face when at sheffield (i think) the crowd overwhelmingly supported Chambers. You couldnt believe that not everyone shared your OTT opinions on the matter, showing just how out of touch with reality you are, and how much of an inflated sense of your own worth you have. Just like Kelly Holmes, you are a great ex runner whose opinions are at best misguided and ignorant, and at worse just plain stupid and bitter.

    You're an awful journalist Cram. Please stop spouting your comic routines from the rooftops and leave the serious comment to people whose opinion is actually worth listening to and is not driven by a desire for controversy and attention. You are an attention seeker Cram. You won one silver 25 years ago, nobody cares. Please dont think that anyone is actually waiting for, or caring about your opinion. Most people have no idea who you are. We know what your view on Chambers is, and its boring listening to you regurgitate the same utter garbage over and over again.

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  • 16. At 2:22pm on 18 Jul 2008, United Dreamer wrote:

    Colin Jackson, Thompson and Holmes have all come out against reinstating Chambers.

    For me it was the right decision. His inclusion would deny a place for a promising youngster and in the run-up to the British Olympics, he really is not the kind of influence on youngsters just coming through now.

    Part of me feels for Dwaine despite him bringing it on himself because he couldn't have envisaged this coming back on him to the extent it has and was presumably advised by the wrong people. But the other half of me remembers he spent 18 months cheating other athletes and it was only when he was caught that the remorse came out.

    Despite this I wish him the best in his pursuit of a cheating free future but it is right he is excluded from the Olympics.

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  • 17. At 2:23pm on 18 Jul 2008, cam4sport wrote:

    On the other hand jolshopsatoxfam you do not possess even 1 silver medal from 25 years ago and yet your equally polarised opinions are apparently valuable.

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  • 18. At 2:31pm on 18 Jul 2008, Jordan D wrote:

    united_dreamer - let's not forget that Kelly Holmes said (on record, 2006), that Dwain "should be welcomed back". When we are in the market of talking of hypocracy, then Holmes should be included in that.

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  • 19. At 2:40pm on 18 Jul 2008, saintex wrote:

    Calling in from America....

    Unfortunately we are well down the line of discovering cheating all too often in all sport. Much like every other aspect of life, I think that if you fulfill your penalty then you should be able to return to what life you had prior to that penalty. Chambers can still run, he just can't run in the Olympics - and that's fair enough. Those rules were very clear and he doesn't have much to appeal. Having said that, I think UKA needs to determine in the future if they want to mirror International rules - he can compete after a suspension - or not let him compete at all...anywhere, ever, under the guise of the UK banner. I'm one to believe that we are also long past the ideal of competing under for, or under, the "honor" or your country. I've love to go back to when I thought everyone competely honorably but that's no longer the case. I'll be routing for the British team.

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  • 20. At 2:41pm on 18 Jul 2008, United Dreamer wrote:

    Jordan D - I was only referring to her in terms of the argument of racism. There may be an element of it terms of the strength of ill-feeling (nationally and in the media - I do not discount the reality of it) towards Dwaine but I think the result of the judgement would have been the same regardless of his colour. I sincerely hope so in any case.

    For me the decision was the right one and hopefully with the up-coming British Olympics this will be effective in discouraging future athletes making the same ill-thought decision Chambers did. If it does deter them then he can think of his sacrifice as being a worthwhile one.

    For me there are too many youths blaming others for taking the wrong decisions and hoping that they will get another chance. Maybe this will serve to remind them that when taking the choices they do in life, even at a young age the cost can be lifelong.

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  • 21. At 2:41pm on 18 Jul 2008, fleckers12 wrote:

    i belive dwain should be given the chance to run in the olymipcs. yes he did cheat but he also served his time. he is by far britians best medal hope in the 100m isnt he?? the one thing that annoys me is that imagine dwain didnt drugs back then how good he could of been now?? though i do belive people who take drugs to improve their performance because they belive they cant win the medal cleanily it just shows what people will do to win

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  • 22. At 2:45pm on 18 Jul 2008, DaveWalnut wrote:

    The problem I have with whe situation is that it is yet another example of Britain trying to 'lead the way' in the wrong fashion. There will be plenty of other athletes competing for other nations who will have failed drugs tests in the past. Why shouldn't Dwain? Because the Britons are snobs? They think themselves better than the other nations?

    The International Olympic Committee have no problem with him competing in THEIR competition so if he's good enough he should compete.

    When Britain show their uselessness again it will be because Dwain Chambers took drugs not because we're failing to produce consistent top quality performers.

    Remember that Dwain will most likely be welcomed to every other Athletics event in the calender. This wretches of ulterior motives from the BOA.

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  • 23. At 2:49pm on 18 Jul 2008, jolshopsatoxfam wrote:

    "On the other hand jolshopsatoxfam you do not possess even 1 silver medal from 25 years ago and yet your equally polarised opinions are apparently valuable."

    No, i dont posess any medals, but i do posess an ability to look at and judge a situation objectively and no to be swayed by the need to court controversy and seek attention. He publicly decried a fellow athlete and human being by basically saying he has no right to be a runner and compete and earn his livelyhood, when in fact he has commited a crime and served his punishment. Even without the olmpics thing, Cram has still made numerous nasty and totally unnecessary comment to the tune of 'chambers really annoys me, i hate him and wish he would go away and never compete again'. He has made it so so personal.

    Look at how Kelly Holmses opinion has changed as she has tried to grab some attention by slagging off chambers. Holmes, Cram...pathetic, no opinions of their own, just spouting whatever drivel they feel is going to get them maximum attention

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  • 24. At 2:51pm on 18 Jul 2008, anon wrote:

    Apolies for everyone for mwmonk. do not dignify his rubbish with an answer. and yes it is surely cause i@m racist i'm disagreing with you. (Sarcastic) so you understand

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  • 25. At 2:55pm on 18 Jul 2008, United Dreamer wrote:

    DaveWalnut, Britains laws are different from every other country's as indeed are every country's laws. Are we to say that every country is snobbish because they choose to follow a particular path?

    I don't think you have an argument. If the BOI want to follow a path divergent from other countries, it is their right and Myerscough got hit by the same ban lest you forget. Personally I agree with it. We were the first football nation to give 3 points for a win in our national league and Europe followed suit. Sometimes being different is the right thing to be. Nothing to do with being snobbish. If you want to call it that fair enough but that doesn't make it wrong.

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  • 26. At 2:58pm on 18 Jul 2008, United Dreamer wrote:

    harry_mw01 - I'm sure mwmonk doesn't need you apologising for him. He has his viewpoint you have yours. Stop trying to impose your viewpoint just because yours differs. I disagree with him but that doesn't mean he doesn't have a right to voice an opinion without being ridiculed.

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  • 27. At 3:05pm on 18 Jul 2008, anon wrote:

    sorry I apoligise for everyone who is intelligent

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  • 28. At 3:13pm on 18 Jul 2008, freddawlanen wrote:

    We all know that cheating has gone on forever, to allow cheats to prosper ie. letting them compete at the Olympics, sends out a dangerous message to all, especially to young, future Olympians, who will see it as an easy option with few consequences.

    Isn't it about time that the IOC did the right thing and actually follow Britains policy of banning drug cheats for life from the Olympics.

    The prize money may be in the Golden League, but any athlete will tell you that they'd give every prize they'd ever won for an Olympic gold.

    I used to love watching the pinnacle of the sport, but the last few Olympics have left me with a bad taste in my mouth, because of the amount of cheats allowed to compete.

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  • 29. At 3:43pm on 18 Jul 2008, stokecity87 wrote:

    Mr Cram's opinion of the Chambers situation is interesting. He like others speak as if they believe this is the greatest athletics nation in history. The fact is we are not. We have had a few great athletes and some mediocre ones. This is not a problem with the act of drug taking I believe, Cram etc are trying to salvage the credibility of a dismantled sport.

    I believe the athletes criticising Chambers don't have a problem with him, they don't want to be accused themselves. Sure they may not have taken anything and I sincerely believe they haven't. However, I would have prefered impartial commentary when I watched the 100m finals at the British Olympic Trials not have to listen to snide comments.

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  • 30. At 4:01pm on 18 Jul 2008, jolshopsatoxfam wrote:

    "however, I would have prefered impartial commentary when I watched the 100m finals at the British Olympic Trials not have to listen to snide comments."

    unfortunately petty, snide comments appears to be all our 'great' past athletes are capable of. People like Daley Thompson etc have completely embarrased themselves with their attention seeking rants against Chambers. I think the majority of the british sporting public are thouroughly tired of all the anti-chambers rhetoric - yes we know what all you ex athletes think, please leave the guy alone, he is a human being and hasnt broken the law




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  • 31. At 4:09pm on 18 Jul 2008, feetrunfaster wrote:

    Here is a poser for all of you to concider!

    After taking body enhancing drugs and tuning your body into an elevated state which is cheating can you possable say that at any future time your body is not more powerful than it should be if you did not take any drugs to begin with?
    If you can't answer this to a satifactory answer then all drug using people should be banned from all sport which then does not have a level playingfield and give the non abusers the credit.

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  • 32. At 4:29pm on 18 Jul 2008, fleckers12 wrote:

    guys do you not think his drug ban should cover all comptitions rather than just the olympics because what will stop him running at the worlds next year as hes allowed to and theirs no one can do to stop him running there only if he fials 2 beat the rest of the field which i think he will clean up soon if dwaine sticks with athletics then i belive he could b changelling the top runners in the world. so its not dwaine whos at fault its the boa for their 1 rule for this 1rule for another

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  • 33. At 4:59pm on 18 Jul 2008, Anglo_Celt wrote:

    mwmonk

    I think the racism here is your own. Why have you excluded Colin Jackson, Kelly Holmes etc from your list. They gave the same view. Daley Thompson our greatest ever Olympic athlete was less diplomatic. What he said about Dwain is not repeatable here. These people you criticise have criticised white drug cheats like Carl Myerscough in the past. It did not get so heated because he has accepted his ban and will not go despite winning the trial with the A standard.

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  • 34. At 5:37pm on 18 Jul 2008, logicalopinion wrote:

    feetrunfaster

    I can tell you that there is no eveidence to suggest that any form of sporting enhamcement drugs actually work.

    Yes, there are plenty of papers on the subject - some saying that they do work and others saying that they don't work. But the research done is dependant only on the paremeters which the researchers govern themselves by, with the results being quite subjective.

    It can be extremely difficult to prove that any improvements in performance are down to the use of illegal substances and not training effect.

    As for any gains in strength or muscle mass. that may be attributed to their use, being of any prolonged advantage once their use has ceased. It takes as little as two weeks for any training gains to subside and muscular atrophy to begin.

    As sprint speed is determined by the amount of force that can be applied with each foot strike, the distance covered by each stride length and the rate of cadence - it is highly unlikely that the type of strength gained in the gym can be of any applied use to a sprinter. Even olympic lifts, which are used by many, can not produce the muscular contraction times or reaction times of the central nervous system, that are used when sprinting.

    Indeed, if this was the case then all power lifters would also be world 100m record holders.

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  • 35. At 5:40pm on 18 Jul 2008, DUFC-Rufus wrote:

    I'm still not convinced by Christine Ohourougu's defence of: "Oh I accidentally missed 3 drugs tests". Surely missing multiple drugs tests implies guilt! She is allowed to go to the Olympics, so why not Chambers?

    Better still, press the IOC to bring in a blanket ban of all drugs cheats sine die. At the moment, as someone has already said, if UK athletics is really to make a stand it will pull its athletes out of all events in which there is an athlete who has committed a drugs offence.

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  • 36. At 10:31am on 19 Jul 2008, Twine35 wrote:

    There is one theory that says people who are overly harsh on the failings of others are usually trying to deal with their own guilt in that area.

    It is just a theory but People like Cram will know what lies deep within their hearts.

    I for one support Dwain however I do not have a problem with the Olympic ban. Dwain can still run in the World Championship, Commonwealth and European meets. I believe he may have 3 good years left and if he can win a few titles in the other meets it will go a long way to restore his credibility.

    There must be rehabilitation in every aspect of life.

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  • 37. At 1:35pm on 19 Jul 2008, mwmonk wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 38. At 1:48pm on 19 Jul 2008, mwmonk wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 39. At 1:55pm on 19 Jul 2008, mwmonk wrote:

    I have written a rebuttal of arguments used against me, but the moderators will not post it, as they say it is potentially defamatory.

    I resubmitted the post in a substantailly altered format, but again it was removed.

    I do not think any comments I have made are defamatory, and would not condone any such comments.

    For those of you who replied to my earlier comments, I do wish to respond to you, but until I get an answer from the moderators, I cannot.

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  • 40. At 2:01pm on 19 Jul 2008, mwmonk wrote:

    I seem to have taken a lot of criticism for raising the issue that race played a part here, but no-one can deny that it is appalling that so many people are lining up to attack one athlete, who is trying to do his best to make a living.

    Maybe I was incorrect in using that terminology - it certainly stirred up all the 'political correctness gone mad' loonies who cannot condone their opinions being countered by anyone, anyway. And of course the opinions of people who respond by shouting, or claiming to be more intelligent that other debaters (I am thinking of the likes of harry_M01 etc.) are impossible to respond to, so I will not waste my time doing so.

    Perhaps I should have called it a definite incidence of class bias and bigotry, because that is most definitely what has gone on.

    The attacks against Chambers are simply repeating the party line: "Athletics is a closed shop, for the middle and upper classes, and we do not want any of you lower classes involved - especially if you want to stand up against us".

    Chambers is being persecuted for making a mistake, he is being hounded for having the temerity to follow his dream and seek forgiveness from a country he wants to represent, and is being bullied by those in charge of his sport who see him as nothing more than an upstart. It is exactly the same as happened to Linford Christie.

    Drugs are a part of every sport, every aspect of life, and a part of all of us. Dwain Chambers once chose to misuse them. He has not hurt anyone else, he has not committed any crimes, and all he did wrong was that he forgot to tug his forelock to his masters, and do their bidding.

    Until we stand up and attack the type of vitriol that was used to lambast Chambers with this week, nothing will ever change.

    How many working class kids in towns and cities up and down the UK have looked at this bullying this week and thought "Forget that, I'm going to take up a sport where people will accept that some of us make mistakes, sometimes"?

    And all those people who are happy to sit in their ivory towers and criticise Chambers for daring to stand up and say no, should be ashamed.

    I may have been wrong to say 'racist' but I am not wrong in saying bigot

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  • 41. At 2:09pm on 19 Jul 2008, mwmonk wrote:

    For anyone wondering what rule I fell foul of, it is this:

    "Identification - For a defamation case to succeed, the defamatory statement must be seen to refer to the claimant, even if that was not the writer's intention. Leaving out someone's name is no guarantee of avoiding defamation, if there are other clues that could lead to their identification.

    Not naming anyone can be equally problematic. For example, if you said that 'one of the authors of today's five top articles has stolen work from someone else', then each of the authors of 'today's articles' could argue that the statement could reasonably be taken to refer to him or her, and they could all sue for libel. However, if you said 'all BBC community members were crooks', then the category is so wide that no single member could say he or she was defamed"

    I was guilty of the 'Not Naming Anyone' rule.

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  • 42. At 8:02pm on 19 Jul 2008, saintlymark wrote:

    Hmmm a lot of taking apart of the Dwain Chambers case, when Mr Cram didn't mention Chambers in his piece.

    The reality of the Johnson case I think is somewhat closer to what mwmonk was claiming in his original post. Maybe not racism but a level of cultural snobbery. In 1988 it was impossible to imagine a Brit or an American being a cheat, but a Canadian? and a not fabulously articulate one at that?

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  • 43. At 12:17pm on 20 Jul 2008, uka2012 wrote:

    Why do people always worry more about the cheats than the victims?

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  • 44. At 4:29pm on 20 Jul 2008, JobyJak wrote:

    What really annoys me is the way Cram could not contain his opinion when Chambers won the British trials.

    Even my sister, who knows nothing about athletics, watched it and said "Oh my god, aren't the BBC supposed to be impartial?"

    I just laughed and told her about the true reality of the BBC.

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  • 45. At 5:54pm on 20 Jul 2008, pilgrim wrote:

    Call me a cynic, but the thing that principally amazes me is that anyone actually believes that a majority of athletes are drug free. Perhaps this is what is meant by the lament that drug users do irreperable harm to the sport: increasingly since the Ben Johnson thing (at which time I thought Lewis took stuff too) on through the odd death of Florence Griffiths-Joyner and on down to the lovely Marion Jackson - my default position is to assume that most athletes 'take a little something'. I don't approve, but my suspicions don't affect my enjoyment in watching. But no confession by any athlete has the power to surprise me.

    That said - given the clarity of the (British) rules, I wonder who advised Chambers to appeal, and how much he paid them for their advice. Whatever it was, it was too much. Even a first year law student could have told him that...

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  • 46. At 7:45pm on 20 Jul 2008, Richard2866 wrote:

    I'm afraid this whole thread has become rather tainted by the current circumstances surrounding the cheat Dwain Chambers. The article by Steve Cram in many ways marks the 20th anniversary of public awareness and yet still today we have cheats denigrating world athletics to the point of total discredit and marginalising the sport to a circus act.

    It is appalling, that twenty years hence the "Dirtiest Race Ever" (hardly!) we are no nearer ridding the sport of the cheats than we were 5 - 10 - 20 years before that race?

    Anyone that supports "the cheats" are allowing themselves to be influenced by sentiment and false idol-hood, they really need to focus on the thousands that have seen their dreams destroyed through others enhancing their performance through cheating and subsequently unable to fund their development through lack of opportunity.

    For every Ben Johnson there were twenty left behind and some of those (multiplied by all the other cheats) would have been as good. Sadly they will never be known because they had to leave the arena of athletics through a lack of support and integrity that still exists in athletics governing bodies worldwide today.

    Every athlete found cheating should be banned for life... full stop.

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  • 47. At 8:30pm on 20 Jul 2008, brigader49 wrote:

    chambers cheated by using dope !,end of story!.
    his relay team mates lost their medals when they had to give them back a few years later,who would want to run the risk of competing in the same relay team again with him?.
    he should just accept that he got caught cheating and get on with life the best he can,as for the fact that he is black and people are using the race card (yet again!)dont forget that world champion racing cyclist scotsman david millar got caught out by a dope check some years back,he did his banned time quietly and is now back racing as a "clean rider",he too is banned by team GB from the olympics but is not shouting about racism and of being banned because he is white and a scot!,no he is just getting on with life and competing cleanly just like dwain chambers should be doing!.

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  • 48. At 8:08pm on 25 Jul 2008, snatch_pete78 wrote:

    In response to Comment 34

    You seem a little deluded with your logical opinions!

    Drugs clearly enhance performance. Researchers have to have clear measurable parameters for their studies or they would be worthless. If doping was useless Germany and other countries would not have ran a state sponsored scheme. Also the recent Bulgarian weightlifting team would not have all been on it. From my time in weightlifting it is often clear who has recently begun taking performance enhancing drugs (while on the same training regime) as the increase in their totals begins to shoot up.

    There are numerous studies showing incorporation of the Olympic lifting movements (not powerlifting) result in a reduction in sprint times.

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  • 49. At 2:36pm on 26 Jul 2008, outspooken wrote:

    Does anybody remember Alain Baxter?

    The British Skier who made British Olympic history by becoming the first Briton to win a medal in alpine skiing in 2002?

    But a few days later discovered that he had failed a drugs test.

    He was then stripped of his medal and received a lengthy ban which was shortened to 3 month. But has since competed in the 2006 Winter Olympics.

    Where does this bylaw start and where does it end?

    I think some of the people on here and some of the commentators ala Cram, Jackson and others are living in cloud cookoo land if they think that the sport has EVER been clean.

    I can remember as far back watching the GDR and the old Eastern block dominate athletics with women that looked like men posting incredible times. We ALL knew what was going on but were to British and Polite to say.

    This sport has NEVER been clean.

    Only when we as a sporting nation acknowledge this and stop scape goating can we move forward.

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