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IAAF mulls sanction against Chambers

British sprinter Dwain Chambers could face sanctions from the sport's world governing body for his autobiography detailing his use of performance-enhancing drugs.

The International Association of Athletics Federations said on Monday that its legal experts will study the book and consider whether Chambers should be punished for "bringing the sport into disrepute." The case will come up at an IAAF meeting in Berlin this month.

Chambers won the 60 meters at the European indoor championships in Turin, Italy, on Sunday for his first major title since serving a two-year ban in the BALCO doping scandal.

His victory was largely overshadowed in Britain by the fallout from his book, "Race Against Me: My Story." The autobiography, which has been serialized in the British media, went on sale on Monday.

In the book, Chambers said he was a "walking junkie" who took more than 300 different concoctions of banned substances after linking up with BALCO founder Victor Conte in 2002. He said the doping products, including THG, EPO and HGH, cost him US$30,000 a year.

"We will get a copy of the book and ask our legal experts to study it," IAAF spokesman Nick Davies said. "If further action needs to be taken, this will be discussed by the IAAF Council at its next meeting in Berlin on March 21-22."

Under IAAF rules, an athlete can face penalties - including a competition ban - if found to have brought the sport into disrepute.

A suspension could keep Chambers out of the World Championships in Berlin in August, where he hopes to line up in the 100 meters against Olympic gold medalist and world record-holder Usain Bolt.

The 30-year-old Chambers broke the European 60-meter indoor record in Turin by running 6.42 in the semifinals. He clocked 6.46 in the final. But his victory was treated coolly, with the Daily Mail running the headline, "Tainted Gold."

Chambers denied suggestions that he might be benefiting from the residual effects of his 18 months of drug use before being caught.

"I'm not failing any drug tests," he said. "I'm doing my sport clean. I just hope people will let the past be the past now."

Under British rules, he remains banned for life from the Olympics.

But the Golden League organizers in Berlin said yesterday that Chambers will be welcome on June 14, after previously banning him.

"I am surprised Chambers is viewed as the root of all evil," meet director Gerhard Janetzky told the event's official Website yesterday. "I feel there should not be a professional ban for athletes.

"There have been plenty of athletes who were allowed to start after sitting out their ban so why should Chambers's punishment be worse?"

The IAAF ordered Chambers to pay back his prize money from the time he was doping, but allowed him to compete in the meantime. He still owes about US$150,000.

"He did a deal with the IAAF that would allow him to run so he could use his winnings to repay the IAAF money he won while he was running 'dirty,'" UK Athletics chairman Ed Warner said. "I have spoken to the IAAF at length over the weekend and they are concerned that he may have brought the sport into disrepute with what has been written in the book."


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