Smyth believes drug cheats should receive lifetime bans

Irish sprinter Jason Smyth, who trains alongside shamed American Tyson Gay, says drug cheats should be banned from athletics.

Gay and Jamaican Asafa Powell were this week found guilty of doping and Smyth was asked if cheats should be given four-year or lifetime bans, as suggested by Ireland’s David Gillick.

“I didn’t see what David Gillick said, but I feel like those who intentionally cheat, without a doubt [they should be banned],” he said.

“If you are silly enough to go out and do these things, and intentionally go out of your way to do it then you have to face the consequences. Intentionally cheating is in no way acceptable in any walk of life.”

Many of the fastest men in the history of 100m sprinting have been caught doping at different times, so the question is whether that has permeated through to Paralympic sports, such as Smyth’s.

The Derry man says he can only account for himself, but points out that each competitor needs to be vigilant.

“I think all athletes have to be careful in everything they do. Everything that an athlete puts into their body, supplements, you have got to be aware of it. It is part of the job, just like turning up to run on the track, doing the training.”

The IPC Athletics and Swimming World Championships take place from July 19-28 in Lyon and Smyth will contest the T13 100m and 200m. This will be the first big meet he has contested since last autumn.

“You go from the hype of London and 80,000 people and everyone roaring and supporting you to going to a competition when there is nobody there and it seems a little bit irrelevant,” said the double gold medal winner from the 2012 Games.

“It is a contrast, but at the same time you realise you have to just focus and, as fantastic as London was, it is in the past and you have to look forward now because it is about preparing for Rio, world championships and continually trying to achieve what you haven’t achieved and not looking into the past.”


© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved

Email Updates

Receive our lunchtime briefing straight to your inbox

More in this Section

‘World Championships? I just said, why not, sure’

‘McGregor’s going to knock Mayweather out cold’

Title contenders on two fronts go head to head in Derry

Droopys Noah is one to note at Irish Greyhound Derby


Breaking Stories

Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere sent off after under-23s brawl

Victoria Azarenka pulls out of US Open for personal reasons

Billy Vunipola to miss first month of Saracens' season with injury

Man City v Everton: Two red cards and Wayne Rooney's milestone made for an eventful game

Lifestyle

Scoring a goal for the homeless

Making Cents: It’s barking mad not to consider your pet costs

From Russia with love (of dancing)

The Islands of Ireland: Knight to remember on Clare Island

More From The Irish Examiner