'Drugs no help in surfing' says Kelly Slater
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 23 February, 2012 : - - Gold Coast, Australia - Kelly Slater is happy to abide by new doping regulations being implemented, but he doubts whether performance-enhancing drugs would make anyone surf better. Surfing's image has sometimes been clouded by images of wild lifestyles, of cashed-up athletes treading a fine line between partying and performing.
Today's pro surfer is super-fit, however the ASP still wants to clean up the sport for good. Slater, speaking at the launch of the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast said he had no problem with the tests. The world Tour will have its first series of formalised drug testing this year involving standards prescribed by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). "Doesn't bother me," Slater said.
"I actually don't know that the performance-enhancing issue applies to us so much. Surfing is a lot of decision making and skill. It's not just based on speed and it's not just based on strength. "I don't know that if someone takes a drug it's going to make them win a heat, whereas if a guy is running round a track and he wants to go as fast as he possibly can, a drug probably can make him go faster. I think he probably can cheat.
"Surfing is a little different."
The new ASP Anti-Doping Policy will test for both illicit and performance-enhancing substances. Offenders face a minimum one-year ban from the tour. Slater also commented on marijuana being regarded as performance enhancing. "Anyone going to get busted on tour? Maybe, it would be kind of funny. I mean, it would be a bummer for that person, it would be embarrassing.
"Obviously there has been no shortage of drug insinuations in surfing, the lifestyle and travel and everything, but as far as affecting competition, I can't say with any authority that it does. But there are standards we are expected to rise to as a professional sport so the drug testing, it's totally viable for us to have it.
Slater is undecided about whether he will compete full-time this year. He hopes his longevity inspires other elite athletes to ignore the notion they should retire in their early-to-mid 30s. "Maybe some of the best athletes we've ever seen have quit too early," he said.
Source: SV Agents
Tags: Kelly Slater, Drug testing,