Rhonex Kipruto, owner of the world record for the 10000 meters on the road, was suspended for six years

The Kenyan received the maximum sanction for irregularities in his biological passport and the Court considered that he was part of a system of “deliberate and sophisticated doping” to improve his performance. He will lose his record and the bronze medal at the Doha World Cup.

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Rhonex Kipruto will lose the record for... the bronze medal at the 2019 Doha World Cup.
Credits: kiprutorhonex.
Rhonex Kipruto will lose the record for... the bronze medal at the 2019 Doha World Cup. Credits: kiprutorhonex.

Kenyan Rhonex Kipruto, the world record holder for 10,000 meters on the road, was suspended for six years due to irregularities in his biological passport, as ruled by the Disciplinary Court of the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) of World Athletics.

Kipruto, bronze medalist in the 2019 Doha World Cup, had been provisionally sanctioned since May 11, 2023 and now the measure has been ratified, so he will only be able to compete again on May 10, 2029.

The suspension of the Kenyan is due to the fact that abnormal oscillations in his blood values were detected in 32 checks carried out between July 2018 and March 2022. “The athlete’s arguments could not explain the abnormalities in the passport,” said the UIA Disciplinary Court.

As stated in the ruling, the Court decided the maximum sanction by determining that Kipruto underwent a system of “deliberate and sophisticated doping prolonged over time with the objective of artificially improving his performance”.

“Several anomalies found in the athlete’s ABP were linked to important competitions, including the Valencia half marathon in 2020 and the Kenyan Olympic qualifiers in 2021. Blood doping outside of competitions can also be used to gain an advantage by allowing for more intense training and this has an obvious effect on performance, even after a significant period of time. This is corroborated by the fact that in recent years many athletes have been positive for EPO far from competition,” said the panel of experts.

In addition to the suspension, the Kenyan will lose all the awards and brands established from September 2, 2018 to May 11, 2023, so he will be left without the world road record he had set in Valencia, in 2020. He will also lose, among other achievements, the bronze medal in the 10,000 meters at the World Athletics Championship in Doha and the victory in the same distance in the Diamond League in Stockholm 2019. The decision may be appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

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