Mercoledì, 26 Settembre 2018

Walk champ Schwazer hands in badge, Turkey asks about drugs


(ANSA) - Bologna, August 9 - Italy's disgraced Olympic walk
champion, police officer Alex Schwazer, was suspended from the
Carabinieri after being excluded from the London Games this week
for failing a drug test.
Schwazer arrived at the Bologna Carabinieri sporting
headquarters a day after announcing he would turn in his gun and
Test results this week found traces of the EPO
blood-boosting hormone in his urine samples, days before he was
set to race in London.
Criminal prosectors on Wednesday formally placed Schwazer
under investigation for sporting fraud in Bolzano, which is near
his hometown of Vipiteno in northern Italy.
Schwazer said Wednesday that he was never under the
influence of any substances when he won gold medal in the 50km
walk in the 2008 Games in Beijing.
He added that he only ever took the drug recently for the
first time and with no one's help.
Schwazer said he found the drug at a pharmacy in Antalya,
On Thursday Turkish pharmacists him to specify in which of
their drug stores he bought the performance-enhancing drug.
"In which pharmacy and in what circumstances did he buy
them?" Kerem Zabun, president of the Antalya Order of
Pharmacists, told the Anadolu news agency.
Zabun added that drugs containing EPO are regularly checked
by the health ministry and the order of pharmacists, and
entrance and exit records are strictly registered and followed
with drug-tracking systems.
"Every phase of it is monitored. Drugs containing EPO
cannot be bought at any time at pharmacies," said Zabun.
Many speculate that the Beijing gold medalist would have
needed help from a medical professional to acquire EPO.
Meanwhile, Italy's Olympic committee chief said Thursday
that Schwazer should use the scandal as an opportunity to become
an anti-doping advocate
"I hope so. He should become the leader in the fight
against doping. That's what you need to do when you've fallen so
low," Gianni Petrucci told Radio Anch'io.
"But the human aspect needs to be looked after," he added,
in a reference to Schwazer's emotional state following a tearful
public confession Wednesday.
The fall from grace has brought back memories in Italy of
cyclist Macro Pantani, the former Tour de France and Giro
d'Italia champion who killed himself in 2004 after doping
Schwazer said on his website Thursday that it was "absurd"
of him to risk relationships with friends and family "in order
to be stronger in a race".
He also thanked people for their support.
"In such a terrible moment in my life, I've received
continuous messages of support and encouragement," he said.
"I've really appreciated it. They give me the strength to move

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