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Jesse Norman MP in Paula Radcliffe Row


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Paula Radcliffe denies ‘cheating in any form’ after allusions in parliament

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A “devastated†Paula Radcliffe has insisted she has never cheated “in any form whatsoever at any time in my careerâ€, following a parliamentary select committee hearing into doping allegations she claimed forced her to speak out.

 

The marathon world record holder, one of Britain’s best-loved athletes whoretired from competition this year because of injury, had not been named in connection with the recent spate of allegations regarding blood doping that have engulfed the sport. But after Jesse Norman, the Tory MP who chairs the culture, media and sport select committee, asked questions that appeared to suggest a British winner of the London Marathon was “potentially†implicated, Radcliffe said she had no choice but to speak out in order to clear her name.

 

“These accusations threaten to undermine all I have stood and competed for, as well as my hard-earned reputation. By linking me to allegations of cheating, damage done to my name and reputation can never be fully repaired, no matter how untrue I know them to be,†said Radcliffe, whose 2003 marathon world record of 2hr 15min 25sec in London remains almost three minutes faster than any other woman in history. “Whilst I have the greatest of respect for anyone responsibly trying to uncover cheating in sport, and of course for parliament itself, it is profoundly disappointing that the cloak of parliamentary privilege has been used to effectively implicate me, tarnishing my reputation, with full knowledge that I have no recourse against anyone for repeating what has been said at the committee hearing.â€

 

At a hearing of the culture, media and sport select committee, convened to look into recent allegations by the German broadcaster ARD and the Sunday Times that a third of endurance medallists over a 10-year period had suspicious blood values, Norman was in the process of questioning the UK Anti-Doping Agency chairman, David Kenworthy, towards the end of a three-hour hearing when he appeared to raise suspicions about a prominent British marathon runner. “When you hear the London Marathon, potentially the winners or medallists at the London Marathon, potentially British athletes are under suspicion for very high levels of blood doping … When you think of the effect that has on young people and the community nature of that event, what are your emotions about that, how do you feel about that?â€

Guardian

 

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Response to Paula Radcliffe

 

In response to a press statement by Paula Radcliffe, Mr Norman said:

 

"Ms Radcliffe's comments appear to focus far more on the Sunday Times's reports than on today's hearing.  But for the avoidance of doubt the witnesses in evidence and the Committee itself at the hearing were all careful not to identify any individual athletes, and did not discuss specific allegations or test results. The Sunday Times database has not been passed to the Committee, and Committee members have not had the ability to consult it. No names of any athletes were mentioned in the hearing except those already in the public domain.

It is untrue to suggest that 'the cloak of Parliamentary privilege' has been used to implicate any specific individual in any form of doping.  Anyone with concerns about this is encouraged to 
, or to consult the transcript, which will be published shortly."

Parliament.uk

 

 

 

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Very clumsy of Jesse as Chair of Arts & Darts Select Committee

 

I agree. His question basically nailed the suspicion down to one candidate. 

 

But for the avoidance of doubt the witnesses in evidence and the Committee itself at the hearing were all careful not to identify any individual athletes

 

I disagree. His question only led to one answer. No one was named but are people wrong when everyone was over the comment in about 30 seconds ? With the same conclusion ? 

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Jesse Norman's 'Paula Radcliffe' Doping Questions Lambasted By Twitter Users After Car Crash Radio 4 Interview

 

The Tory MP who suggested that a British winner of the London Marathon could be linked to blood doping has received mounting condemnation after he the blamed the press for misquoting him - but he still refuses to deny that he did not mean Paula Radcliffe.

 

 

During the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee on Tuesday, Jesse Normanasked UK Anti-Doping chairman, David Kenworthy: “When you hear the London Marathon, potentially the winners or medallists at the London Marathon, poten­tially British athletes are under suspicion for very high levels of blood doping… when you think of the ­effect that has on young people and the community nature of that event, what are your emotions about that, how do you feel about that?â€

 

 

Radcliffe, 41, is the only non-disabled British winner of the marathon since 1996

 

Although not mentioned by name, the long-distance runner hit back at the comments, maintaining that she is a “clean†athlete in a 1,700 word rebuttal.

 

Speaking to BBC Radio 4's Today programme on Wednesday, Norman said he was surprised that a row had erupted as “no names were given, no allegations were made, no specific athletes were describedâ€.

 

He said: “We went through a whole bunch of countries of which things have been said, serious allegations made – Russia, Kenya – and it’s absolutely right to raise the question of whether or not British athletes may have been involved in some way [in doping].

 

“And what is interesting also is that, of course, in a three hour hearing what’s happened is that the press pack – and it is a pack, it’s a herd of ungulates – have basically taken this single snippet and run off to Paula Radcliffe and attempted to bounce her into some kind of statement and I think that’s very unfortunate.â€

 

Despite numerous attempts made by Today's presenter, Sarah Montague, Norman refused to acknowledge that he was referring to Radcliffe.

 

People were highly critical of Norman on social media following his Radio 4 interview, with some calling for an apology and even his resignation.

 

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Jesse Norman Chair of the Commons Culture Media and Sport Select Committee and also something I did not realise until just now is he is  Patron of No 1 Ledbury Road.

 

We know he is very well read and has written numerous books and he must be quite an enthusiastic sportsperson I wonder which sport he has a preference for 

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