Athletics: Young handed life ban

The US anti-doping agency banned the sprinter Jerome Young for life yesterday after the world 400-metre champion's second positive test for an illegal steroid.

Young tested positive for erythropoietin (EPO) at a meeting in July, the USADA said. He is believed to be the first sprinter to test positive for EPO, which is popular with endurance runners and cyclists. Tests for EPO were introduced at the 2000 Sydney Games. The United States sprinter Kelli White admitted she used EPO and other performance-enhancing drugs earlier this year when she accepted a two-year ban for doping.

Young, 28, tested positive for the steroid nandrolone in 1999 and was stripped of his gold medal from the 4x400-metre relay team. The International Amateur Athletics Federation recommended last month that the entire team be penalised because Young should have been ineligible.

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