Olympic champion Alptekin loses 1,500-meter title for doping
GENEVA - The Associated Press
AP photoOlympic champion Asli Çakır Alptekin has agreed to give up her 1,500-meter title and serve an 8-year ban for blood doping, dealing another blow to track and field.
A settlement by the Turkish runner and the IAAF was announced by the Court of Arbitration for Sport on Aug. 17, days before the world championships open in Beijing.
Alptekin forfeited all her results from July 29, 2010, including the 2012 Olympic gold medal and her 2012 European Championship title.
Now 29, Alptekin won gold at the London Games after lowering her personal best time by almost nine seconds throughout the season.
CAS said the IAAF charge that Alptekin manipulated her blood between July 29, 2010, and Oct. 17, 2012, "is upheld by default" because of the runner's consent.
Alptekin was investigated based on abnormal blood values in her biological passport. The IAAF appealed to sport's highest court after the Turkish Athletics Federation cleared Alptekin in December 2013.
The agreement published by CAS notes that "she is unable to substantiate the explanations she has offered for those values, and therefore is unable to rebut the IAAF's assertion that those values are the result of some form of blood manipulation."
The 8-year-ban is the maximum allowed by the IAAF for a second doping offense of that type, the ruling said.
Alptekin previously served a two-year ban for a positive test for an anabolic steroid at the 2004 world junior championships.
She has not raced competitively since being provisionally suspended by IAAF in January 2013.
The Olympic gold could now be awarded to Alptekin's teammate, Gamze Bulut, who finished second.
The fourth-place runner in the London race who would be in line for bronze is Tatyana Tomashova. She served a two-year ban imposed in 2008 for her part in a Russian conspiracy to avoid doping detection.
Tomashova, a two-time 1,500-meter world champion who also won silver at the 2004 Athens Olympics, was among several Russian women whose urine was swapped for clean samples.
Alptekin also forfeits her appearance money and prize money earned since July 2010. That includes a $10,000 prize from the IAAF for taking bronze in the 2012 world indoors in front of her home crowd in Istanbul, the ruling said.
The Turkish federation could also reclaim prize money issued by Turkish authorities for her medal-winning races.
During the case, Alptekin first argued that her blood readings were caused by "living and training at altitude, use of altitude-simulating techniques, and/or medical issues," the CAS ruling stated.
Expert independent witnesses said her explanations were "unsubstantiated and/or scientifically unsound ... (and) do not provide a credible non-doping explanation."