Doping at the Olympics: Wada report exposes "serious failings" in drug testing at 2016 Rio Games

 
Joe Hall
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Olympics Wada doping report
Unimpressed? Wada boss Sir Craig Reedie (Source: Getty)

A new report from the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) into this summer's Rio Olympics has exposed "serious failings" in the drugs testing process at the games.

Those feeling disillusionment towards the Games following revelations of Russia's state-sponsored doping programme or the growing number of athletes being stripped of medals won at the 2008 and 2012 games following Wada re-testing are likely to have their faith in the International Olympic Committee's (IOC) ability to catch cheats further shaken by the 55-page report.

Read more: Wada and IOC come under fire from man who exposed Russia's doping operation and Lance Armstrong

Here's everything you need to know:

The damning verdict

"These various logistical issues were foreseeable and entirely avoidable, which makes their occurrence all the more disappointing," stated the report.

"Ultimately, it was only due to the enormous resourcefulness and goodwill of some key doping control personnel working at the Games that the process did not break down entirely."


Irish boxer Michael O'Reilly was one athlete found to have taken banned substances by the anti-doping forces in Rio. (Source: Getty)

What went wrong - Wada's disturbing findings

  • 498 fewer drug tests carried out than had been planned. 5,380 were supposed to be carried out — just 4,882 were.
  • Just 47 of the planned 450 Athlete Biological Passport blood tests were carried out.
  • Nearly 100 samples were not matched to an athlete due to data entry errors.
  • One missing sample was not located until two weeks after the Olympics finished.
  • No out-of-competition testing conducted in football.
  • "Little or no in-competition testing" for a number of "high-risk" sports.
  • The "no notice" nature of out-of-competition testing compromised as chaperones tasked with notifying athletes were provided with inadequate information and forced to ask teammates about the whereabouts of athletes.
  • On some days, up to 50 per cent of tests were cancelled as athletes couldn't be found.
  • Transport for doping officers was "often inadequate or even non-existent".
  • "Untrained and inexperienced" chaperones were employed throughout the tournament.

Read more: Russian athletes banned from competing in Rio de Janeiro by IAAF

What went right - the anti-doping staff's dedication

"Without them, the Games anti-doping programme would have almost certainly collapsed," read the report, "But due to their initiative, tenacity and professionalism in the face of great difficulties, the many problems identified above were patched over and sample collection was conducted in a manner that ensured the identity and integrity of the samples."

Rio's anti-doping laboratory was also deemed to be a big improvement on the facilities at the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi where it was later revealed athletes' samples had been swapped.

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