Jamaican Dominance in Sprinting Will Lead to More Steroid Testing

  • Tweet

Usain Bolt, the two-time Olympic champion in the 100-meters and 200-meters, has been suspected of using anabolic steroids by several people. There has been no evidence to suggest he used steroids. But in the midst of today’s steroid hysteria, every remarkable athletic performance is under suspicion. And it’s not just Bolt but the performances of the entire squad of Jamaican sprinters.

After all, Jamaica set a world record in the 4×100-meter relay; Bolt, Yohan Blake and Warren Weir won gold, silver and bronze in the 200-meters; and Bolt and Blake won first and second in the 100-meters.

Dick Pound, a current member of the International Olympic committee, thinks that anti-doping authorities will push for more steroid testing of Jamaican athletes in the aftermath of the 2012 London Olympics. Pound doesn’t believe Jamaica has done a good job at testing its athletes up to this point implying that its sprinters may have a greater chance of getting away with doping.

“No, they are one of the groups that are hard to test, it is (hard) to get in and find them and so forth,” Pound told Reuters Television. “I think they can expect, with the extraordinary results that they have had, that they will be on everybody’s radar.”

Pound is the former chief of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and has intimate knowledge of how the anti-doping system works. He recognizes that Jamaica does not have a national anti-doping agency that tests its athletes on a regular basis like many other countries.

Pound is not the only one to point out the lack of a level playing field when it comes to steroid testing for Jamaican athletes. Victor Conte, the mastermind behind the BALCO designer steroid scandal in elite sports, has repeatedly highlighted the less stringent anti-doping rules applied to Jamaican athletes. Carl Lewis, the 100-meter gold medalist at the 2004 Los Angeles and 2008 Seoul Olympics, has also made note of this. Bolt roundly criticized Lewis for his comments in the moments after his victory in London.

Over 5000 steroid- and anti-doping tests were performed at the London Olympics. Far less than one percent of the athletes tested positive. None of Jamaica’s elite sprinters tested positive.

Usain Bolt


Reuters. (August 13, 2012). Jamaican sprinters to be targeted for doping. Retrieved from