It sounds like a (good) spy novel. A repentant Russian senior official, Grigory Rodchenkov, former boss of the Russian branch of the AMA (World Anti-Doping Agency), refugee in the United States since his last revelations released a book on July 30 on his experience. And his statements are interesting to say the least.
"READ ALSO - JO: Qatar candidate to host the 2032 edition
A laboratory hidden in a ship during the 1984 Olympics
He says that if the USSR refused to participate in the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles, it is not (only) for political reasons, but because of the doping program then underway. "I have knowingly defrauded the world's anti-doping authorities for over ten years, both to the glory of Russian athletes and also to satisfy the sports bureaucrats determined to perpetuate Russia's sporting success," he wrote in his book whose first extracts were published by the Mail on Sunday . (…) The Soviets had planned to hide a doping control laboratory on board a ship in the port of Los Angeles during the 1984 Olympic Games. (…) When Los Angeles did not allow our ship to entering the port was the last straw. The Politburo unplugged everything and boycotted the Olympics entirely. "
“What happened in Russia is the maximum. No one will ever be able to match that, in any country, because we had the green light from everyone ”Grigory Rodchenkov
Indeed, according to Rodchenkov, doping was so widespread that it had become almost impossible for the authorities to find clean urine in order to disguise the cheating on the eve of the Games. Rodchenkov then mentions that the famous boat was on the other hand very present in Seoul in 1988… “If we had had the means (to detect doping) that we have today for Seoul (1988), Moscow (1980) or Atlanta (1996), there would have been hundreds and hundreds of positive tests, he promises in an interview with the BBC . What happened in Russia is the maximum. No one can ever match that, in any country, because we had the green light from everyone. "
Exclusion of Russia from the Tokyo Olympics necessary
Following its old revelations, all Russian sport is caught up in the whirlwind and part of its federations are quite simply ostracized from world sport. Thus in Pyeongchang during the 2018 Winter Olympics, no athlete was able to compete under the Russian flag and only the athletes who were able to prove their total innocence were able to participate under the neutral flag. Sanctions that Rodchenkov recommends pursuing for Tokyo, without any exceptions. “The same people who cheated and falsified documents during Sochi continue to falsify tests. This shows that the country is not learning. "
»READ ALSO - Four years from the Olympic Games, is Paris preparing a discount edition?
The cunning government for its part explains that Rodchenkov acted on his own, and denies state doping. “The Olympic Games were a project of Vladimir Putin. We had no limit on our resources, ”reassures the renegade for his part. However, for Rodchenkov, doping is inevitable, regardless of the country: "It is human nature, (the Games) will never be clean."
The confusing example of Ben Johnson
In 1988, after winning gold in the 100m ahead of American Carl Lewis, Ben Johnson tested positive for stanozol, an anabolic setroid, and had his world record set a year earlier canceled. Rotchenkov says that as early as 1986, his laboratory had already tested Johnson positive for the same anabolic, but had not said anything under pressure from the Government: " The analysis of doping control at the Goodwill Games (in 1986) turned out to be a formality. Our lab found 14 positive results, but the apparatchiks at Goskomsport [the Soviet Sports Ministry] chose not to report them. Ben Johnson beat Carl Lewis, but then tested positive for stanozolol. I did. his analysis. The result was never reported. "
- Doping: a sports cataclysm threatens Russia