Where's all the gold? Track and field's tainted Olympic history

By Sam Hewat

Nadzeya Ostapchuk was a London 2012 gold medalist, defeating Valerie Adams in the shot put before being tested positive for banned substances. Photo / Photosport
Nadzeya Ostapchuk was a London 2012 gold medalist, defeating Valerie Adams in the shot put before being tested positive for banned substances. Photo / Photosport

Yet another Russian has fallen.

Hammer thrower Tatyana Lysenko is the latest to be embroiled in Russia's state wide doping scandal, stripped of her gold medal from the 2012 London Olympics today.

Not only is it another blotch on Russia's already diabolical Olympic history, but it's also another medal from the track and field arena - an arena which has been notorious for drugs cheats.

Following the retesting of blood samples held for the past eight years, more and more athletes have been forced to hand over their prize.

We take a look at just how tainted track and field has been over the past two Olympic Games.

Note: Relay teams in this story count as one medal, and one athlete.

London 2012 Olympics

There are 23 track and field events on offer at each Olympic Games.

For the women, in the London 2012 Olympics, eight events had athletes who were doping - seven events in which those athletes received a medal. Depending on which way you look at it, it's practically a third of all track and field events tainted by cheaters.

There were 12 female dopers in the track and field events - eight from Russia, one from Ukraine, Belarus, Spain, and Turkey.

For the men, the London 2012 Olympics saw five events tainted by doping - three events that in which those athletes received a medal.

There were seven male dopers - four from Russia, one from Ukraine, Belarus, and the United States.

Beijing 2008 Olympics

For the women, in the Beijing 2008 Olympics, 11 events had athletes who were doping - seven events in which those athletes received a medal. Nearly half of the track and field events contained a doper in the field.

There were 12 female dopers - seven from Russia, two from Greece, one from Ukraine, Cuba, and Croatia.

For the men, the London 2012 Olympics saw six events tainted by doping - three events in which those athletes received a medal.

There were seven male dopers - four from Russia, one from Belarus, Bahrain, and Qatar.

Totals

30 track and field events from the Beijing and London Olympics had athletes competing on banned substances.

22 medals have been stripped - seven gold, 11 silver and four bronze.

38 track and field athletes from the Beijing and London Olympics have been found guilty of doping - not accounting for relay teams who contain four athletes.

Russia has had 23, Belarus three, Ukraine three, Greece two, Bahrain one, Croatia one, Cuba one, Turkey one, United States one, Qatar one, and Spain one.

- NZ Herald

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