Sunday Times investigation reveals claim by British doctor Mark Bonar that he has doped sports stars, including cyclists

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British professional cyclists at the highest level are among 150 sports stars that a London doctor has claimed that he has helped take banned performance-enhancing drugs.

>>> Cyclist named as British ‘doping doctor’ whistleblower by newspaper

A Sunday Times investigation, published on Sunday (April 3), revealed that Dr Mark Bonar claims to have prescribed banned substances to un-named ‘British Tour de France cyclists’ as well as premiership footballers, tennis players, a boxing champion and a cricketer. He claims his clients come from Britain and abroad.

Bonar was filmed making the claims to a Sunday Times undercover reporter, who posed as an ‘aspiring Olympic runner’, to whom Bonar later prescribed a course of EPO. Bonar works in the Omniya Clinic in Knightsbridge, London, specialising in anti-aging treatment.

Bonar told the undercover reporter: “Some of these treatments I use are banned on the professional circuit. So you have to be mindful of that. Having said that – I have worked with lots of professional athletes who do use these treatments.”

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The Sunday Times was unable to confirm that any of the sportspeople Bonar claimed he treated had any involvement with him. “Those contacted by the Sunday Times either denied being treated by him or declined to comment,” the paper said.

The newspaper was tipped off about Bonar’s activities by a sportsman who had approached UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) in 2014 with evidence of Bonar’s prescription of banned drugs, including testosterone and EPO. UKAD reportedly dismissed the evidence as of ‘little or no value’.

According to UKAD, Bonar’s activities fell outside its jurisdiction, and they advised the sportsman that more evidence was needed to that the case could be passed to the General Medical Council (GMC).

UKAD issued a statement from its chief executive, Nicole Sapstead in response to the Sunday Times article, read:

“In relation to this specific case, UKAD commenced an investigation into Dr Bonar following interviews with a sportsperson in April and May 2014. Following those interviews and an investigation, UKAD found that there was nothing to indicate that Dr Bonar was governed by a sport and UKAD had no other intelligence to corroborate the sportsman’s allegations.

“As a result, UKAD recommended to the sportsperson that more information was needed and as Dr Bonar fell outside of UKAD’s jurisdiction, that information could be passed, if appropriate, to the General Medical Council, which does have the powers to investigate possible medical malpractice and pursue if necessary.

“UKAD encouraged the sportsperson to obtain evidence, to go through his files to see if he had any useful documents, to recall names, to keep in touch with investigators – anything which may be deemed as helpful to the investigation and could help to corroborate what had been said in his interviews.

“UKAD received handwritten prescriptions from the sportsperson in October 2014. The sportsperson claimed to have been issued these prescriptions by Dr Bonar and UKAD consulted an independent medical expert to examine the prescriptions. After assessing all the evidence, as per the National Intelligence Model, UKAD did not believe that there were grounds, at that point, to refer the case to the GMC.”

UKAD announced that an independent review will now be undertaken relating to the Sunday Times’ claims.

  • Michael

    Well yeah, the fake sheik always got some apparently damning footage.

    It’s what he doesn’t show that was key to his ultimate downfall.

  • sisyphus969

    so, what has happened to this story? killed by the gov? Can we just blame the Russians?

  • sisyphus969

    did you see the taped interview? the Md willingly provided the information – he was unprompted.

  • jmccabe

    I would be shocked if any of this turned out to be true. This guy seems to me like a total sleazeball who’s just out to make a name for himself at the expense of others.

  • Samuel Clemens

    Yeah man, there’s all that grass for starters.

  • Michael

    Yes it is. This was an undercover reporter trying to get a story.

    The guy the sun paper used to get doing this as a fake sheik was exposed for the tactics he used to goad his targets into saying or doing what he wanted.

  • Michael

    If it was top British cyclists he would have named them. This is classic innuendo and bravado from a guy trying to con his audience to believe it’s specific, famous British cyclists.

    As regards these cyclists there’s nothing to sweep under any carpet – there’s no evidence or anything of substance. The usual hard of thinking will jump to a false conclusion or decide it vindicates their prior assumption jumping.

  • J1

    I reckon Lawn Bowls is rife with drugs.

  • J1

    20th Century Cox.

  • Lee Wingate

    I agree Graham. Football is rife with drugs, but there’s too much money involved…. So it’ll be dropped into the circular filing cabinet under a desk somewhere i suspect

  • Tim Phillips

    It’s not the journalist who made the claim

  • The Awakening

    ian franklin,

    Maybe in the Doctors surgery, cups of tea were consumed out of a tea pot, or perhaps a tea urn. Maybe empty cans of Coke and Pepsi found in the waste paper baskets and a coffee making machine in the surgery staff room…

    One can only wonder and speculate at this stage, but no doubt in next weeks Sunday exclusive, it will reveal more in a drip by drip fashion/formulation, like a tea pot nearly empty!

  • Dair Allan

    Sounds like marketing “spin” reported as real news. But it will tarnish genuine athletes who get inferred by the nonsense story.

  • Steven Nicholson

    name name’s, if the doctor has evidence then he shouldn’t be scared of being sued otherwise it just seems like a crooked doctor trying to make a name for himself (although looking at the news he’s although been in plenty of trouble recently)

  • James Hester

    Murdoch.

  • ian franklin

    I think this is an empty boast by an eccentric ‘doctor’. Anyone seriously doing this stuff would be a little more circumspect. To say that “Top British Tour de France cyclists” were involved is just a small step from naming what could only be at the most 5 riders. So my gut feeling is that this is a load of bull****, genuinely reported by a naive reporter out to make a name for himself. Rich Wake comes to a similar conclusion below. If it’s true then ….jesus! I’m lost for words for a change.

  • NAMES OR IT DIDN’T HAPPEN.

  • Rupert the Super Bear

    I’m sure you’re right Graham.

  • Chumply Chummunderson

    That’s what I said! But they wouldn’t listen to me as I’d turned up without the club jersey.

  • llos25

    One of the biggest dopers and embezzlers is to found in UK athletics.

  • llos25

    Maxwell?

  • Chumply Chummunderson

    This had the conspiracy theorists in raptures on the club run this morning. One of their favourite ideas appeared to be that this could be Maxwell’s out from sponsoring Team Sky and he gets to sell a few extra papers to boot.

  • Tony

    Name the names of athletes, otherwise this sort of journalism is useless.

  • Rich Wake

    Quite frankly, if it’s a undercover report then the sorry excuse for a Dr could just be trying to impress the prospective doper,

  • Simon ‘Sprout’ Phillips

    Well, it will be interesting to see if this Doctor will spill the beans.

    This appears to cover many sports so this needs a big investigation

  • graham

    If there are top British cyclists involved in this they need to be named and dealt with, however I believe this whole thing will be swept under the carpet because footballers are involved.