Athletes arriving in Britain to stay, train and compete ahead of the London 2012 Olympic Games will be subjected to unannounced anti-doping tests, UK Anti-Doping revealed on Wednesday.
Athletes will be targetted for testing according to a number of factors, including intelligence given to UKAD from a ‘variety of sources’.
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“We are doing all we can to ensure that there is no place to hide for drug cheats in this country,” said Minister for Sport and the Olympics Hugh Robertson.
“Information sharing across borders and a strong testing programme will help in this fight in the run up to London 2012 and beyond.”
World Anti-Doping Agency director general WADA David Howman added: “This is a positive step towards achieving a clean Games and I would like to thank UK Anti-Doping for this initiative which reinforces our message to anti-doping organisations worldwide.”
UKAD’s efforts are part of a huge anti-doping drive both before and during the Games. A 24-hour anti-doping laboratory manned by 150 scientists will test approximately 5,000 samples taken from athletes competing in the Olympic Games, and 1,200 from the Paralympic Games.
Many athletes – including cyclists taking part in track, BMX, road and mountain bike events – will start arriving during July to prepare for the Olympic Games, which run over July 27 to August 12. The Paralympic Games take place from August 29 to September 9.