Drugs in sport: Ward backs open dope test approach

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The Independent Online
A CALL from several leading athletes for the British Athletic Federation to publicise all its doping test results, both positive and negative, has been backed by the BAF spokesman, Tony Ward.

'There are some arguments against publishing the results of all tests, but the overwhelming feeling is for this to happen,' Ward said yesterday.

He confirmed a report that he had suggested to the BAF drugs advisory committee that the results of tests on athletes found to be 'clean' should also be made public. He said leading athletes were in favour of this. European champions Du'Aine Ladejo and Steve Backley have been the latest to voice such an opinion.

The federation attracted criticism last month following reports that some British athletes had served three-month bans in the last few years without the details being made public.

Ward said the image of British athletics had suffered from a spate of positive drug tests during the season and many athletes were worried about being tainted by these results.

'The drugs cases caused a vast amount of suspicion,' he said. 'We do more testing than any other sport in Britain, about 600 to 700 tests a year.'

He added: 'We are concerned about the leaks in the summer. We need to try and find out how they occured.'