Edinburgh Marathon Director Neil Kilgour has said that any athlete with a proven doping history will “never, ever” be invited to compete at the Edinburgh Marathon Festival.
The world of athletics has been at the forefront of controversy recently after claims in the Sunday Times about systematic and widespread doping within the sport of athletics, including at the 2012 London Olympics.
The Edinburgh Marathon Festival released the following statement on its website last night:
In the light of recent doping allegations in athletics from the Sunday Times, Scotland’s premier road race event would like to state its position.
The Edinburgh Marathon Festival is widely recognised as one of the UK’s most prestigious road races and as such, invites leading international marathon runners from home and abroad to compete at the event every May.
It is our policy to never – under any circumstances – invite any athlete who are proven drug cheats and who have served a suspension.
Neil Kilgour, Race Director, Edinburgh Marathon Festival said: “We have for a number of years retained very strong values at the Edinburgh Marathon Festival. We know from talking to our runners, they feel it is important that a thread of integrity runs right through the event. We share that philosophy.
“That is why we have a no-compromise approach to any athletes who have cheated their fellow competitors. Anyone who lines up at the Edinburgh Marathon Festival can do so with confidence that the race organisers have done everything possible to ensure a clean race on a level playing field for all runners. We pay several thousand pounds each year to have testing take place at our events.
“Any athlete with a proven doping history will never, ever be invited to compete at the Edinburgh Marathon Festival.
“I would also like to stress that if any participants from previous Edinburgh Marathon Festivals subsequently turn out to have been involved in illegal doping activities, we will immediately strip them of any awards and we will pursue all legal avenues to retrieve any prize money paid and award this to the rightful winner.
“The Edinburgh Marathon Festival is a brilliant event, it is also a clean event. We will do everything in our power to ensure it stays that way.”
The Edinburgh Marathon takes place on 28/29 May 2016.