A 'Clean' sport - in more than just a name

A 'Clean' sport - in more than just a name
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Athletes holding their 'I Run Clean' bibs ahead of last summer's Amsterdam 2016 European Athletics Championships.

At a time when track and field is taking every measure in the fight against doping, UK Athletics has launched its own brand to strengthen its stance and would like to bring in lifetime bans for those guilty of an offence. 

A year ago, the federation published ‘A Manifesto for Clean Athletics' as they called for a wide-ranging debate about measures that could be introduced to achieve a new era away from drugs in sport.

Now they have replaced their 'Anti-doping' department with 'Clean Athletics' in a move to reinforce the name of what is looking to be achieved.

“As we announced last year, the integrity of athletics was challenged as never before in 2015," said UK Athletics Chairman Ed Warner. “However 2016 saw a seismic change in the way athletics responded to doping in sport.

“The stances taken by both the IAAF for athletics and the IPC on behalf of all Paralympic sports could be seen as a turning point, but there is still much to do.

“Overall we are concerned that the pace of change remains too slow, in spite of the Russian situation and the spotlight it shed on WADA and its relationship with the IOC last summer. There remains too much denial in too many quarters, but we will continue to work to make progress in the areas we can.

“Finally we are using this one year on moment to launch our own Clean Athletics brand and would urge other sports to follow suit to remain focused on what they want to achieve.”

UK Athletics have updated their position from their original 14 proposals made within the Manifesto for Clean Athletics.

They will seek to enforce a lifetime ban against athletes representing Britain if guilty of a serious anti-doping violation. They want a minimum of eight years for serious doping offences to ensure that cheating athletes miss two Olympic or Paralympic cycles, with lifetime bans applied in appropriate cases.

UK Athletics would also like a new set of records based on the new Clean Athletics era and they are calling on anti-doping agencies to be renamed Clean Sport, or their equivalent in local language, to emphasise the ultimate purpose of their intentions.