An anti-doping educational programme that will benefit local athletes is expected to be implemented in the British Virgin Islands this year.
This is according to President of the BVI Olympic Committee (BVIOC) Ephraim Penn, who told BVI News that the programme will be led by Dr Harlan Vanterpool, who is in charge of BVIOC’s anti-doping commission.
“We are very fortunate in having Dr Harlan Vanterpool leading our programme here, and he has come up with a programme that is going to be revealed shortly. We are responsible for eight out of competition testing annually and we will be selecting athletes based here to test and we are working on that programme,” Penn stated.
This news comes after Trinidadian sprinter Michelle Lee Ahye was banned from athletics for two years for missing three drug tests within a 12-month period.
Doping control officers trained locally
Penn who was invited to comment on the recent occurrence said the BVI has been embarking on a number of initiatives over the years to keep local athletes well informed and to prevent similar instances from occurring to local athletes.
He said: “We are in a good position now, where we just trained a number of doping control officers (DCO) locally, and we are one of the very few small countries with that capability, and we are now developing a robust programme where we are going to begin testing our local athletes on a regular basis.”
Senior athletes knowledgeable of testing requirements
The BVIOC’s boss further said that local senior athletes who compete internationally are made to join a registered testing pool. Through this programme, they are given random drug tests to ensure that banned enhancement products are not present within their body.
Penn explained that the BVI’s senior athletes are knowledgeable of what is expected, and continues to comply with the requirements from the anti-doping agencies.
“Some of our senior athletes who have been very successful are in that programme, so we don’t have to worry about testing them. They have to report and give whereabout information to the international body, and that body can tell a doping control officer to test an athlete at a specific location based on the information provided,” he stated.
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