The International Association of Athletics Foundation (IAAF) has reacted to the cases of both Liliya Shobukhova and Rita Jeptoo by implementing out-of-competition testing for performance-enhancing drugs. Such is the IAAF’s determination in revising the laws, elite athletes could be subject to the testing as early as this summer.
The programme has been devised by the IAAF in partnership with the organisers from the Marathon Majors events - London, Berlin, Boston, Chicago, New York City and Tokyo. As it stands, the testing pool looks likely to include around 150 runners who would be eligible for prize money at the Majors.
According to Runner’s World, the other criteria are defined as follows: ‘all athletes who earned WMM points from 2012 to 2015; men who broke 2:11 and women who ran under 2:27:00 in any marathon from 2012 to 2014 and are entered in a 2015 Major; world-class half marathoners who are planning their marathon debut at a 2015 Major.’
This new legislation is regarded as a major step forward in eradicating the use of performance enhancing drugs. The implementation comes shortly after three-time Boston marathon winner, Rita Jeptoo, was handed a two-year doping ban after testing positive for the blood-booster EPO. The 33-year-old will be suspended from all competition until 29 October 2016, missing both this year's world championships in Beijing and the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.