World and Olympic 1,500m champion, Asbel Kiprop has added his voice for those calling for dopers in Kenya in a bid to save the reputation of the local runners.
There have been allegations and reports that there is widespread doping amongst the country’s long distance runners esepcially after the failed test of top marathoner, Rita Jeptoo which has caused an uproar amongst the athletics family.
Kiprop who is looking to defend his title in Beijing next year says that Kenya should follow on the footsteps of Japan where athletes found to be abusing banned substances are prosecuted and if found guilty they are sent to serve a jail term in addition to the mandatory two year International Athletics Federation (IAAF) ban.
“The positive tests alone on athletes is bringing a lot of pain to the Athletes, something which is a disgrace to to the sports.Those found guilty should serve a long jail term in addition to the ban,” Kiprop, an Inspector with the Kenya Police told Sportsnewsarena.com on Friday.
Kiprop was speaking in Nairobi at the unveiling of the first standard running track by a local learning institution, GEMs Cambridge International School where he was accompanied by two times World marathon champion Edna Kiplagat and National Olympic Committee of Kenya chairman, Kipchoge Keino.
The 400m weatherproof rubberized running track that circles a full sized astro turf sports field will be open to the sporting community.It is the first International standard track by an educational facility in the country.
Keino said that there was need for widespread public education to sensitize athletes on the importance of staying away from banned drugs.
“As NOCK we will work with Ministry of Education to come up with ways of training and teaching our youth on the importance of staying away from drugs,”said Keino.
“This is a great milestone in the industry today as we launch the first private standard track in the city. Our country prides in sports as is evident in our performance internationally especially in athletics. We are elated to add to the list an ultra-modern track where talent can be further advanced.”
Kiprop has begun his preparation in earnest for his title defence after a ‘hilly and down’ season where he missed out on the African title after failing to make the Commonwealth games team.
“I didn’t achieve many of the targets a I set last season. I wanted to lower the World record but it came as a surprise that I did not come close to my personal best-the season was hilly and down,” said Kiprop.