The effort to catch athletes using EPO, blood transfusion and other performance enhancing drugs is far from satisfyingly efficient.
Such is the message from Frederic Donze, director of the European office of the international anti-doping agency WADA, who Monday took part in a panel discussion on the subject at Play the Game in Aarhus.
”We know that 1-2 pct. of athletes worldwide are taken for use of doping, but our understanding from studies and so on is that in reality many more are using doping,” Donze stated, when we spoke to him after the debate.
Timing is the key
Frederic Donze is of the opinion that a lot of the doping using athletes have been tested hundreds of times without being caught.
“Therefore we need to look at new strategies as a supplement to testing in order to catch the real cheaters,” he said.
Would you say that you have gotten as far as you can with normal testing?
“No. Cause otherwise we would probably stop doing it. But it is clear that testing at the moment is not as clever as it could and should be. I think the practice of testing can be better in anti-doping organizations worldwide. The key is to test the right athlete at the right time.”
Biological Passport is part of the future
As an example of an alternative to the testing methods we know today, Donze mentions the athlete biological passport. It gives a better view of the athletes’ data over time, where as the testing method today is only about the day of testing.
”It (biological passport) will be used a lot more in the future. And we hope that we in the long run will see results that will make all countries use the biological passport,” Donze said.
According to him, around 40 cases have so far been upheld by the international sport court CAS based on the biological passport.