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Usain Bolt: Russian Ban Will "Scare Off" Dopers

Usain Bolt: Russian Ban Will "Scare Off" Dopers
Photo: Kirby Lee - USA TODAY Sports
Many believe banning Russia's track and field team from competing at the 2016 Summer Olympics should have a positive effect on cleaning up the sport, including the world's fastest man.

Usain Bolt, the world record-holder in the 100m and 200m, said at a London Diamond League press event that he thinks the ban will scare off other athletes and federations who attempt to take short cuts via doping. 



Reporters asked for Bolt's thoughts on today's Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) verdict, which will bar 68 Russian track and field athletes from competing at the Games. The athletes unsuccessfully appealed to a ruling by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) that banned Russian athletes from competing internationally following allegations of state-sponsored doping and cover-ups. 

Initially, the six-time Olympic gold medalist didn't want to comment, and said, "I have no deep reaction. They broke the rules. I don't make the rules or decisions. I just have to go along with them." 

But when the media pressed him, Bolt said, "It's a good message to show that if you cheat or you go against the rules, then we're going to take serious action." 

He continued, "This will scare a lot of people, or send a strong message that the sport is serious; we want a clean sport.If you have the proof and you catch somebody, I definitely feel like you should take action. If you feel like banning the whole team is the right action, then I'm all for it, you know what I mean? Doping violations in track and field are getting really bad, so if you feel like you have to make a statement, then thumbs-up."

Bolt is expected to compete in the 200m at the London Diamond League meeting. If he can prove he has recovered from his hamstring injury, it will be his last race before leaving to compete in Rio de Janeiro.
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