Former Olympic 1500m champion Asbel Kiprop says he has given up trying to prove his drug test sample might have been contaminated after tested positive for the endurance-boosting drug EPO.
The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) last month confirmed traces of banned blood-booster EPO were found in the three-time World champion’s sample collected during November 2017 test.
Kiprop vehemently denied doping, suggesting the out-of-competition sample he gave could have been contaminated by two anti-doping agents he suspects might have targeted him for extortion.
I do not have money to meet legal fees and find qualified physicians who can give their opinion on my sample and discredit any possible unjust reason to why the sample resulted in an EPO finding.
In a Facebook post on Wednesday, the 28-year-old maintained his innocence but added he did not have the finances to challenge athletics’ governing body, the IAAF.
“I have let the struggle to prove my innocence go,” he said.
“Not because I doped, but I take the sacrifice because I support the anti-doping campaign.”
Kiprop informed of test in advance
The AIU confirmed that the doping control agent had given Kiprop advance warning of the test, an act it described as “extremely disappointing”.
Kiprop maintained he was determined to prove his innocence at all costs but said he felt any such effort would be in vain and he will not be able to win back his credibility.
“I do not have money to meet legal fees and find qualified physicians who can give their opinion on my sample and discredit any possible unjust reason to why the sample resulted in an EPO finding,” he added.
Kiprop originally came second in the 1500m final at the 2008 Beijing Olympics but was upgraded when Rashid Ramzi tested positive for a performance-enhancing drug and was stripped of the gold medal. The Kenyan went on to prove his dominance over the distance with three world titles.
Kenya has been fighting intense criticism of its anti-doping efforts after more than 40 athletes tested positive over the past five years.
Three years ago, Kenya was rated “non-compliant” by WADA before being reinstated prior to the Rio Olympics.