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Cycling has the most positive drug tests


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WADA: Cycling produced most positive tests in 2005

Associated Press

LONDON -- Cycling produced the most positive drug tests of any Olympic sport in the latest global statistics compiled by the World Anti-Doping Agency.

WADA-accredited laboratories reported 482 positive samples for cyclists in 2005. Baseball was second with 390 positives, while soccer was third with 343. Track and field -- the most tested sport -- was fourth with 342.

Cycling also had the highest percentage of positive tests, with 3.78 percent out of 12,751 samples, followed by baseball (3.69 percent out of 10,580) and boxing (3.41 percent of 2,433) and triathlon (3.41 percent of 2,170). Track and field had 1.67 percent positives out of 20,464 samples.

Overall, the number of positive samples increased by 34.4 percent, from 2,909 in 2004 to 3,909 in 2005. Of the total samples, 2.13 percent tested positive last year.

WADA's 33 labs tested 14,150 more samples in 2005 than they did in 2004.

"It is positive to see that more and more samples are collected throughout the world and that the number of adverse analytical findings is raising as well," WADA spokesman Frederic Donze said from the agency's Montreal headquarters. "It shows an encouraging commitment to anti-doping."

WADA oversees drug testing in Olympic and some non-Olympic sports, handling both in-competition and out-of-competition controls.

Steroids accounted for the most positive tests in 2005, with 1,864 or 48 percent.

One reason for the increase in positive tests is WADA's policy of target-testing specific athletes, Donze said. Also, the threshold for testosterone to epitestosterone ratio was lowered from six to four.

Despite the increase in positive samples, Donze said that analysis methods and techniques are constantly being refined.

"The fight against doping is a constant work, and global efforts help closing more and more the net on cheaters," Donze said. "Designer steroids such as THG [tetrahydrogestrinone] and DMT [desoxy-methyl testosterone], which were discovered by anti-doping authorities in the past few years, are certainly a concern for anti-doping authorities.

"WADA and WADA-accredited laboratories around the world discovered a number of new designer steroids on which we are working at the moment, and we know that we have to constantly remain vigilant."

The Los Angeles lab tested the most samples (39,775) and had the most positives (538). Paris, which had the third most samples, had the second most positive tests with 491.

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