Mo Farah’s former coach Salazar hit with four-year doping ban

Athletics coach Alberto Salazar

The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) suspended Alberto Salazar on Monday.

Mo Farah’s former coach Alberto Salazar has been banned from athletics for four years after multiple anti-doping violations.

The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) announced the suspension on Monday, with Salazar and Dr Jeffrey Brown sanctioned for “orchestrating and facilitating prohibited doping conduct while acting, respectively, as head coach of the Nike Oregon Project [NOP] and as a paid consultant for the NOP on performance enhancement and as physician for numerous athletes in the NOP”.

Salazar worked with Farah from 2011 until 2017, during a period in which the British runner won four Olympic gold medals before the pair split two years ago.

Two independent three-member panels of the American Arbitration Association (AAA) found Salazar and Brown “possessed and trafficked a banned performance-enhancing substance and administered or attempted to administer a prohibited method to multiple track and field athletes”, while the panel also found that both “committed tampering and complicity violations”.

“The athletes in these cases found the courage to speak out and ultimately exposed the truth,” said USADA chief executive officer Travis T. Tygart.

“While acting in connection with the Nike Oregon Project, Mr. Salazar and Dr. Brown demonstrated that winning was more important than the health and wellbeing of the athletes they were sworn to protect.”

Salazar had denied any wrongdoing in relation to accusations of doping levelled at him by a BBC investigation, which emerged in 2015.

British long-distance star Farah eventually split from Salazar in October 2017 due to his move back to London, ending a partnership of six years.

“I’m moving back home, London, I really miss home,” Farah – who won the 5,000m and 10,000m at London 2012 and Rio 2016 – said in a video posted on Twitter at the time.

“Seeing my kids the way they were in the summer at the World Championships, I’m going to be back there. I’m very excited.

“Also, I’ll no longer be coached by Alberto Salazar… My new coach is going to be Gary Lough, who coached Paula Radcliffe through her marathon.”

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