Mo Farah’s medical data to be investigated by UK Athletics

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Olympic 5000m and 10,000m champion Mo Farah will be investigated by British Athletics in an independent review into “blood data, supplements data, everything surrounding his medical treatment,” UK Athletics chairman Ed Warner said on BBC Radio on Monday.

“We need to make sure there’s nothing else there that we haven’t seen, we’re not aware of, hasn’t been analyzed,” Warner said. “It may well be that the outcome of our own investigation says there’s nothing untoward been going on as far as we can uncover in any way, shape or form around British athletics and a British athlete.”

Farah’s coach, American Alberto Salazar, was accused of cheating by former members of their Nike Oregon Project training group in a BBC and ProPublica report last week.

Farah was not implicated in “inappropriate drug use” by any of the former Nike Oregon Project team members interviewed, according to ProPublica. He has never failed a drug test.

Warner said he thought the UK Athletics investigation would take weeks, not months.

“One of the possible outcomes of all of this is, even though — and I’m sure that’s probably going to be the case — there’s nothing untoward being proven around Mo Farah and British Athletics, we might still recommend to Mo and might still decide ourselves to suspend our relationship [with Salazar] because of the reputational damage that could be caused,” Warner said.

Warner also said a formal process will review “every aspect of our relationship” with Salazar. The chairman called the BBC and ProPublica report a “seismic shock to the sport.”

“If I was a close mate of Mo’s, and he was asking me personally — not as the chairman of British Athletics — ‘What do you think I should do?’ I might have been inclined to say, ‘Do you know what? The easiest thing for you to do right now is to suspend that relationship [with Salazar], take a breather, see how it all plays out, run the circuit in the summer in Europe, on to the World Championships in Beijing, and see what transpires,'” Warner said. “It’s a very fine decision. There’s loyalty issues. Nothing has been proven against Alberto Salazar.”

Farah made his first public comments since last week’s report in a press conference Saturday ahead of a scheduled race in Birmingham, Great Britain, on Sunday. Farah later pulled out of the race.

“This week has been very stressful and taken a lot out of me,” Farah said in a statement announcing he would withdraw. “I have not been able to focus properly on [Sunday’s] race and after the events of the last few days feel emotionally and physically drained.  I want to run well in the IAAF World Athletics Championships in Beijing and have decided it is better for me to go back to the U.S., seek answers to my questions and get back into training.”

On Saturday, Farah said he wouldn’t leave Salazar because he hasn’t seen “clear evidence” against the coach but said he would leave if the allegations were proven true.

“I need some answers,” Farah said he told Salazar. “He goes, ‘Mo, I can prove this to you. These are just allegations. I’ll show you some evidence.'”

Farah said it’s not fair that his name “is getting dragged through the mud” despite not being accused of wrongdoing.

“If Alberto has crossed the line, I’m the first person to leave him,” Farah said.

Olympics add events for Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Games

Eliud Kipchoge, two races shy of his target, to make Boston Marathon debut

Eliud Kipchoge Berlin Marathon
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World record holder Eliud Kipchoge will race the Boston Marathon for the first time on April 17.

Kipchoge, who at September’s Berlin Marathon lowered his world record by 30 seconds to 2:01:09, has won four of the six annual major marathons — Berlin, Tokyo, London and Chicago.

The 38-year-old Kenyan has never raced Boston, the world’s oldest annual marathon dating to 1897, nor New York City but has repeated in recent years a desire to enter both of them.

Typically, he has run the London Marathon in the spring and the Berlin Marathon in the fall.

Kipchoge’s last race in the U.S. was the 2014 Chicago Marathon, his second of 10 consecutive marathon victories from 2014 through 2019.

He can become the first reigning men’s marathon world record holder to finish the Boston Marathon since South Korean Suh Yun-Bok set a world record of 2:25:39 in Boston in 1947, according to the Boston Athletic Association.

In 2024 in Paris, Kipchoge is expected to race the Olympic marathon and bid to become the first person to win three gold medals in that event.

The Boston Marathon field also includes arguably the second- and third-best men in the world right now — Kipchoge’s Kenyan training partners Evans Chebet and Benson Kipruto. Chebet won Boston and New York City this year. Kipruto won Boston last year and Chicago this year.

American Des Linden, who won Boston in 2018, headlines the women’s field.

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2024 Tour de France to end with Nice time trial due to Paris Olympics

2024 Tour de France Nice
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The 2024 Tour de France will end on the French Riviera instead of the French capital because of the Paris Olympics.

The finish of cycling’s marquee race leaves Paris for the first time since 1905.

Tour organizers said on Thursday the last stage of its 111th race will take place in the Mediterranean resort of Nice on July 21. Five days later, Paris opens the Olympics.

Because of security and logistical reasons, the French capital won’t have its traditional Tour finish on the Champs-Elysees. Parting with tradition of a sprint on the Champs-Elysees, the last stage will be an individual time trial along Nice’s famed Promenade des Anglais.

The start of the 2024 race, which will begin for the first time in Italy, was brought forward by one week, a customary change during an Olympic year. The Tour will start on June 29 in Florence.

Nice has hosted the Tour 37 times, including its start twice, in 1981 and in 2020. Two years ago, the start was delayed until Aug. 29 due to lockdowns and travels bans during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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