Guadalajara Pan American Games athletes in danger of doping exposure to contaminated meat?
LAUSANNE, October 18, 2011 - The shocking findings that young football players participating in the FIFA Under 17 World Cup in Mexico were exposed to clenbuterol have opened a can of worms.
With the Pan American Games currently underway in the Mexican city of Guadalajara we would expect that athletes competing there face the same problem: exposure to the illegal steroid.
It seems that it is normal practice in Mexico to use the anabolic steroid clenbuterol to fatten cattle. It is also used as a performance-enhancing drug in sports. If the athletes are eating local meat as part of their diet, it is certain that many will test positive for the banned substance.
We hope not. We hope that the authorities and Pan American Games organisers have taken the necessary precautionary measures. But we fear that the tainted food can become a new issue and a perfect excuse for the cheaters. Now we wait for the reports from Guadalajara in the hope that all possible precautions were put into place.
Even the World Anti-Doping Authority WADA has issued a statement advising athletes traveling to Mexico to "exercise extreme caution with regards to what they eat and where they eat".
This came following WADA's action announcing it had withdrawn it's appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport regarding a decision not to sanction five Mexican footballers who tested positive for clenbuterol.
We wait - the proof will be in the pudding. And we will see the trickle down effect and implications for London 2012.