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RE: Will you accuse Craig Mottram of doping if....
If you look at Ron Clarke's 27:39 10,000, run on a dirt track with no rabbits, then make the standard assumption that a modern track would be a second or two per lap faster, you get a final time that could be as fast as 26:49. If you add some rabbits you could well say that Clarke's performance, run under modern conditions, is equal to what today's runners are doing and we know that EPO or anything like it didn't exist in Clarke's time. You could do a similar sort of analysis of Jim Ryun's 3:51.1 mile and probably of his 3:33.1 1500. Or look at the times Henry Rono ran in what was a career that was really abbreviated by his own personal issues. Give him three years in peak form and I think he too would have run times that approach what we're seeing now. So I don't think that today's world record times are absolute evidence that those setting them are using anything illegal.
On the other hand, I suspect that some of the depth we're seeing is due to drugs. Look at Cathal Lombard as an example of what can happen when a decent national class runner goes to the Dark Side. He didn't set any WRs, but his performances improved by ungodly amounts. I can't believe that he is the only marginal national caliber athlete who decided to cheat his way to prominance.
As to Mottram, his career progression has been consistent. He hasn't suddenly exploded to a higher level from almost nowhere like Lombard or Regina Jacobs did. His training, from what I've read, has paid attention to his aerobic development which should provide a base for the kind of continuing improvement he's shown. I can't vouch for anyone that I don't know, but I see nothing in Mottram's case to warrant suspicion.
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