Cheating grows in sport

It is surprising to many of the older retired athletes of the 1960s and 1970s that today's athletes can stay at the very top of their sport for so many more years than had hitherto been the case. Many appear cautious in what they say but they know how they felt while engaging in strenuous workouts in preparation for high level competition.
Today's athletes not only keep running much longer in terms of years at the top of the sport but they also compete more frequently in the competitive season without necessarily breaking down often and achieving remarkable performances during a single season.
While some may consider the case of the Carifta athlete from Trinidad and Tobago who tested positive for nandrolone and testosterone earlier this year somewhat surprising, many are not at all shocked. It is what appears to be happening around the globe and in different sporting disciplines.
The pressure from the local media in many of the small countries of the world for their athletes to do better at the world level may well be a significant contributor to what is happening in sport. The same media have failed to do their work by way of investigative journalism to understand the basis of the differential performances at any major event.

International Organisations
The International Olympic Committee is yet to explain to the world what happened in Greece with the two athletes who apparently went so far as to fake an accident and hospitalisation to escape a drug test in the days leading up to the athletics competition at the Athens Olympics. The matter was apparently sidelined until after the Games when it was placed in the hands of the IAAF.
The IAAF and several of the other International Federations, IFs, can only blame themselves for their flip-flopping in respect of their so-called fight against drugs in sport.
None of the major sports seem anxious to lose their superstars. They are scared of the implications and hence despite the best intentions of Dick Pound of the World Anti Doping Agency, WADA, the sporting enthusiasts around the world are less than impressed with the approach of the organisation and the IFs.
It is remarkable that the WADA and several IFs appear now only too anxious to adopt a more legalistic approach to dealing with drug cheats in sport. They are considering a significant lessening of the penalties for those athletes who are willing to enter into a sort of plea bargaining, giving information on others, especially dispensers of the drugs. This only serves to weaken the fight against drugs in sport.
The athletes from those countries without the technology are always the ones who feel the pain most when athletes suddenly admit to the use of performance enhancing drugs to gain success.
One of the important features of sport, however, is that more often than not the athletes involved in the sport are always the first to know who is on to something. In a very real sense, who feels it knows it.