Athletics will never be drug free: Michael Johnson

Praising the role of sprinter Usain Bolt in raising the level of interest in the sport, Michael Johnson said the sport's governing body should work with the Jamaican star to help promote athletics.

updated: December 12, 2013 18:15 IST
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Doha: Michael JohnsonAthletics will never be free of drug cheats and, without the Olympics, the sport would be dead, America's four-time Olympic champion Michael Johnson said here.

"Athletics has a zero tolerance policy with drugs and, in a way, we have kind of suffered because of that," said Johnson while addressing a gathering at the Doha Goals Forum on Wednesday. "Since we control it more than most sports, we have more scandals and more people caught."

"Despite that, you are never going to have a situation where no-one cheats - athletics is a microcosm of real life and in real life you will always have people who cheat. It's unrealistic to expect athletics to be a drug free sport. Other sports may have fans that can put up with it but in athletics the fans want to see the Olympians hold true to the Olympic ideal and values."

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  • Michael Anthony Johnson