Eddie Goldman is the host and producer of the No Holds Barred international podcast, the publisher of the No Holds Barred blog, and a senior contributing editor at the ADCC News.

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Wednesday, May 02, 2012

No Holds Barred: David Howman, Director General of WADA, Teleconference 

On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman presents the May 1 media teleconference with David Howman, the Director General of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

The main reason for this teleconference was to discuss with the international media the decision of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to reject the appeal of the British Olympic Association (BOA) after WADA had found it in non-compliance to the World Anti-Doping Code. The BOA, which is the host Olympic committee for the 2012 Summer Olympics, wanted to add a lifetime ban from the Olympics for any athlete who had ever failed a doping test, even after their suspensions had been served.

The CAS agreed with WADA that this was an extra sanction which was, according to its press release, "therefore not in compliance with the WADA Code." The CAS did, however, leave the door open "that the BOA and the IOC were free, as are others, to persuade other stakeholders that an additional sanction of inability to participate in the Olympic Games may be a proportionate, appropriate sanction of an anti-doping offence and may therefore form part of a revised World Anti-doping Code. At the moment, the system in place does not permit what the BOA has done."

The backdrop of this is a growing movement among athletes and others in world sport to increase the penalties for a major doping violation from a two-year ban to a four-year ban for the first offense, as well as a lifetime Olympics ban.

At the same time, the athletic commissions in North America, which regulate combat sports like boxing, mixed martial arts, and kickboxing, are still not following the World Anti-Doping Code, with some having no drug testing at all.

WADA Director General David Howman thus discussed these issues on this teleconference and answered questions from the media.

We also discuss the voluntary drug testing being done by boxers Floyd Mayweather, Miguel Cotto, Shane Mosley, and Saul "Canelo" Alvarez.

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