Closing the anti-doping circus
Are the right questions being asked about substance abuse in sport? I say no, and suggest that the entire process might be abandoned.
Henk van 't Klooster |
Alberto Contador, winner of the 2010 Tour de France, had to return his yellow jersey because clenbuterol was present in his urine. The amount found was 50 picograms per milliliter (1 pg = one millionth of a millionth of a gram). Clenbuterol was – and in certain parts of the world continues to be – used in the meat industry to promote the conversion of fat into muscle. Cyclists, swimmers, football players and other athletes use it for that purpose too, although it’s on the list of banned substances. Contador, however, has always denied using clenbuterol; his explanation is that he ate meat that contained the substance. So far, his defense has been in vain but the results of a recent study (1) might change his position.
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