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All Drug Tests Negative for First Eight Days of World Track

September 08, 1987|RANDY HARVEY | Times Staff Writer

ROME — The International Amateur Athletic Federation announced Monday there were no positive drug tests during the first eight days of track and field's World Championships, which ended Sunday.

Results of drug tests from only the final day of competition were not available, IAAF President Primo Nebiolo of Italy said.

Nebiolo, however, did announce that nine athletes who tested positive for banned substances in other competitions this summer have been suspended.

Only one of the eight, Australian javelin thrower Sue Howland, had qualified to compete in the World Championships. She was informed of her two-year suspension before her competition began.

There were no Americans among those suspended, although Norwegian shotputter Lars Nilsen competes for SMU. He has been suspended for two years for using steroids.

Others suspended for two years were French sprinter Antoine Richard, Romanian sprinter Miheala Chindae, Romanian high jumper Gabriela Mihalcea, French shotputter Jean-Louis Demarne and French hammer thrower Eric De Smedt.

Two other athletes, West German javelin thrower Thomas Menne and Turkish long jumper Termel Erbek, were suspended for three months for using ephedrine, a stimulant found in common cold medicines.

Nebiolo also announced that the IAAF will add the drug probenecid to its banned list on Jan. 1. Probenecid is a drug used by athletes to mask their use of performance-enhancing drugs.

Nebiolo said the IAAF did not test for probenecid at the World Championships because it is not yet a banned substance.

Considering that an average of 1.8% of athletes competing in previous international competitions have tested positive, Nebiolo was asked at a news conference how it is possible that were no positive samples either at the 1983 or 1987 World Championships. There were 1,741 athletes from 165 nations competing here.

"I don't care whether you believe it or not," Nebiolo said, angrily. "That's up to you. I can only give you the results. Perhaps we will have a positive for you in the future."

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