The dark history of stimulants behind “the deception of the century”


At 3 am on September 27, 1988. Seoul, South Korea.

Officials with bloodshot eyes of the Canadian Olympic delegation finally decided to summon Ben Johnson overnight.

The delegation called on the athlete of this national delegation to ask him to get back one thing: the

Olympic gold medal.

Then, Ben Johnson, who surrendered the gold medal, got a notice: you have been fired from the Canadian team.

Seven hours later, the IOC officially held a press conference-it is said to be the largest press conference in the history of the Olympic Games.

At the meeting, the International Olympic Committee officially announced that

this year’s Olympic Games, the men’s 100-meter gold medal winner, Canadian athlete Ben Johnson was found to be taking a stimulant after the game, was disqualified from the championship, and suspended for two years.

When the news came out, the audience was shocked, Seoul was shocked, and the world was shocked.

Just three days ago, Ben Johnson defeated his old opponent, American athlete Carl Lewis, and won the gold medal with a world record of 9 seconds 79 in the men’s 100m final at the Seoul Olympics.

This match, which was described by the media at that time as “the war of the century,” eventually evolved into the famous “cheap of the century.”

Picture: Ben Johnson in the men’s 100-meter race at the Seoul Olympics


Ben Johnson’s opponents . The American track and field genius Carl Lewis became a hero.

Before the game, Carl Lewis declared that he must get this gold medal and dedicate it to his wife and mother-of course, Ben Johnson also declared that he would fight for his mother.

In the end, although Lewis only ran for 9 seconds 92, although it was his personal best score, compared to Ben Johnson’s cheating 9 seconds 79, the score was clean and everyone agreed that this is Deserving of the Olympic gold medal is worthy of his wife and mother.

Since then, Carl Lewis has been actively involved in “anti-doping” campaigns. The legend who has participated in the 4th Olympic Games and won 9 Olympic gold medals and 8 world championship titles has been calling for a strict drug inspection system and claims that the track and field has reached an “unprecedently dirty” state.

Picture: Carl Lewis at the 1988 Seoul Olympics.

His appeal lasted until 2003 and came to an abrupt end.

In April 2003, an American doctor named Wade Exxon brought out a 3,000-word document, exposing the US Olympic Committee’s long-term shelter and indulgence of domestic athletes to take banned drugs to improve performance. In the list of sheltered athletes, Karl Lewis ’s record is impressive:

“Three tests before the 1988 Olympics were positive, and illicit drugs in the body included ephedrine and other three. The U.S. Olympic Committee has previously barred its participation Immediately after the Olympic decision, he accepted Lewis’s complaint about “taking medicine without his knowledge”, allowing him to travel to Seoul on behalf of the United States. ”

Carl Lewis was still quibble at first, but on April 24, 2003, he gave up Resistance: “I think I did it wrong.” think

This had to make people again in 1988. After being deprived of the gold medal, Ben Johnson protested angrily:

everyone is taking medicine! Why only punish me? !!

3 After

reading the two paragraphs, do you think this turn is a bit fast?

Then we might as well go ahead and briefly review the history of human use of stimulants.

The history of doping can be traced back to Nordic legends. Berserkers, a legendary Norse legend, is said to have to take a drink called “Butotens” before fighting because it can greatly increase combat effectiveness. According to later studies, this beverage is likely to contain poisonous mushroom ingredients. As a result, poisonous mushrooms are rumored to have been used by ancient Olympic athletes as “stimulants”.

The British who launched the “Opium War” were probably the first countries to use opium in sports. In the 19th century, a long-endurance run was popular in Britain. In 1807, the endurance runner Abraham Wood blatantly declared that only by using opium tincture, people can keep awake and run continuously within 24 hours.

Do you know what the British endurance was in 1878? It’s 520 miles (equivalent to 837 kilometers)! The champion ran for 138 hours!

It must be pointed out that at that time, everyone did not have the concept of “stimulants”, but only believed that the drugs were used reasonably.

According to an article in “A History of Stimulants” (No. 34, 2008) of “Oriental Watch Weekly”, in 1904, at the Third Olympic Marathon in St. Louis, USA, British-born Thomas Hicks During the game, Charles Lucas, a coach holding a syringe, was always behind him. Whenever Hicks can’t run, Lucas will give him a shot of Strychnine and a glass of whiskey at the right time. “Shining” is also called strychnine, which is a central nervous stimulant.

As a result, Hicks won the championship.

More than track and field events. In 1930, the entry booklet of the famous Tour de France clearly stated that the organizers were not responsible for the “drug” costs of the teams-meaning the drugs were legal, but at your own expense.

Picture: “The Tour de France” Armstrong also admitted to taking medicine and shocked the world.

If this situation continues, the modern Olympic Games of mankind may actually evolve into a four-year “Doping Achievements Expo”. But things changed.

The price of change is that someone has paid their lives.

In the 1960 Rome Olympics, Danish cyclist Jensen died suddenly during the race. An autopsy proved that he had taken amphetamine, alcohol and another medicine to dilate blood vessels. Seven years later, the former Olympic bronze medalist and British cyclist Simpson died suddenly during the Tour de France, and there was unfinished amphetamine in his pocket when he died. People suddenly remembered that Hicks, the marathon champion who was running and giving shots, never participated in a large competition after that Olympic Games … The

most famous example may be the famous American female sprinter, “Flower Butterfly” Joeina.

It was in the 1988 Seoul Olympics that Joyna ran a 54-second victory in the women’s 100 meters, which is still an Olympic record to this day. At the Olympic trials in the United States that year, Joyna also ran a world record of 10 seconds 49.

What is 10 seconds 49? 28 years later, in the 2016 Rio Olympics, the women’s 100 meters won the championship in 10 seconds 71-that’s a full 28 years! After the high-elasticity plastic track, high-tech air-cushion running shoes, and wind-reducing sportswear

were invented, women and humans still could n’t break, even approaching the world record that Joyna set in the year.

However, in 1998, Joyna died quietly in her sleep, only 38 years old. Countless people suspected that it was her overdose of stimulants.

In any case, humans recognize the dangers of stimulants.

In the 1968 Olympics in Mexico, the first anti-doping test in human history appeared.

But looking back, there is nothing to be particularly excited about, because it just means that a good cat-and-mouse show has officially begun.


At the Mexican Olympics in that time, Swedish modern pentathlete Lijenwor became the first person in the history of the Olympics to ban stimulants. However, the illicit drug he took was just an excess of alcohol.

Was that Olympic Games particularly clean?

No, it was the anti-doping method at that time, it was too backward.

Let’s briefly introduce the types of stimulants.

The first category can be summarized as “not tired”. In fact, they are central nervous stimulants, such as caffeine, cocaine, and ephedrine. The opium tincture used in the endurance run mentioned earlier also belongs to this category. This type of stimulant was the first to be detected.

The second category can be summarized as “specific”, which is steroids. One of the more famous is testosterone. After eating this type, the muscle strength increases significantly, the bones become thicker, and the female characteristics gradually disappear. In China, it is commonly known as “Dianabol”. Everyone can recall that it was the “Ma Jiajun” who was known to have been taking “Chinese Emu Extract”.

Before the 2000 Sydney Olympics, steroids were difficult to detect. But in that year, the detection methods had made great progress. That is, in that year, 6 of the 7 members of the “Ma Jiajun” who qualified for the Olympic Games did not participate in the Sydney Olympics. A world record holder of the Chinese women’s swimming team is also prohibited from participating in the Olympic Games by internal regulations.

The third type is advanced, called “EPO”, which is an erythropoietin and was originally used to treat anemia. After the athletes eat, the oxygen supply capacity increases. Improved ability in various aspects such as endurance. Such stimulants have not been detected at all for a long time in history.

The fourth category is all kinds of miscellaneous. For example, in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Korean male shooter Kim Jong-soo won the bronze medal of the men’s 10-meter air pistol and the silver medal of the 50-meter pistol. In fact, it is the antonym of “stimulant”: a tranquilizer called “Xin Dao An”.

The fifth category is the latest high-tech, known as “gene stimulants.” Enhance the ability of athletes by modifying human genes. Sorry, this is still in the guessing stage, and all detection methods can’t detect it now.

Although human beings have been determined to kick out athletes who have improved their performance with drugs since the 1968 Olympics in Mexico, they have been overwhelmed and inadequate-anti-doping detection methods have always been invented and waited for stimulants to come out. Improve.

This means that the “magic” is always one step ahead of the “magic” in terms of stimulants.

Therefore, in the 1988 Seoul Olympics, Ben Johnson was detected to take stimulants at the Seoul Olympics, which would cause such a big sensation. Because before that, people’s anti-doping results were really poor.


What is driving the continuous evolution and development of stimulants?

People used to think that during the Cold War, the socialist state camp that focused on national ideology was the biggest driving force for the flood of stimulants.

Indeed, East Germany (Democratic Germany) has always played a disgraceful role in it. From 1972 to 1988, East Germany won 384 Olympic medals and also set countless world records. According to the population of East Germany, this gold medal ratio is 10 times that of the United States.

After the merger of East and West Germany, the files of the former East German National Security Agency were decrypted, and a plan called “Komplex08” was made public-at the major training bases in East Germany, the coaches systematically gave athletes a try Grow blue pills and tell them they are vitamins, but they are actually steroids.

East German’s women’s shot put champion, Heidi Krieger, became masculine after taking steroids for a long time, and she eventually underwent transsexual surgery.

But is there really only a socialist country?

In the 1954 Men’s Football World Cup final, the Hungarian team, then called the “Dream Team”, scored two goals in the first half of the first half of the West Germany. However, the West German team, which trailed 0-2 in the first half, judged the two teams in the second half, and finally defeated Hungary 3-2 to win the world championship. This game is called “Bern Miracle”.

However, in 2004, German media revealed that during the break between the 1954 World Cup finals, each member of the West German team was injected with a central nervous stimulation drug to increase physical strength and explosiveness. What is even more impressive is that in 2008, the Science Bureau of the German Ministry of the Interior and the German Olympic Committee commissioned Humboldt University of Berlin to investigate the history of drug banning in Germany. The results show that the former Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) systematically organized athletes in pursuit of performance Taking all kinds of banned drugs for more than 30 years.

So what happened after the Cold War?

Just after the Rio Olympic Games, the entire Russian track and field team was banned from participating because of the doping problem. But not long after the Olympic Games closed, Russian hackers hacked into the computer of the World Anti-Doping Agency and released a list of athletes from all countries that tested positive for five doping drugs but were still allowed to participate, mainly capitalism such as the United States, Britain, and France. National camp.

“The scientific and technological strength of a country determines the performance of athletes in this country on the Olympics.” This seemingly reasonable statement reveals a kind of irony and helplessness behind it.

Before the Los Angeles Olympics in 1984, Bob Goldman, chairman of the Canadian Anti-Abuse Group and a steroid expert, once asked the question:

“If I have a magical drug, it will make you within five years, including All the games, including the Olympic Games, are invincible. However, please be careful! If you take this medicine, you will die in five years. Will you eat it? ”

He threw this question to 198 people from all over the world. Outstanding athletes, and what are the results?

103 athletes answered: I am willing to eat!

Therefore, the driving force behind the repeated doping is not only the power of the state.

The great honor and social prestige brought by the Olympic Games and the huge economic benefits to athletes after the commercialization of the Olympic Games have prompted more and more athletes to take risks. After Ben Johnson was deprived of the championship that year, an Italian leather shoe factory immediately cancelled his sponsorship contract of up to 2 million US dollars-but it can also be seen that the commercial value of a 100-meter Olympic champion.

Therefore, the phrase “doping can be found and high technology cannot be found” will become the greatest motivation for many athletes to take a shot.

Fighting stimulants is easy, but fighting human nature is difficult.

And this may be the main reason why the anti-doping road is so difficult and dangerous.

The above content is an excerpt from the series “Temperature of History”, written by Zhang Wei and Zhang Wei’s personal account, “The gimmick said that the copyright belongs to the author and the book. Please reprint the author and the source of the work.

Book introduction

: Looking for the stories, blood and true temperament on the back of history.

“Temperature of History 2: Stories, Encounters, and Beliefs in Details.” , and

“Temperature of History 3: Times are coming to the surface history is instantaneous.”

“Temperature of History 4: Those who persist.” Minds and Beliefs, Ideals and Dreams ”

Xu Xiake, Magellan, Rong Hong, Zhang Boling, Liu Changchun, Mara, Chen Gongbo, Ito Bowen … Whether it is these people who have left names in history books, or ordinary people who have not left names People actually have their own beliefs and dreams. However, if the timeline is pulled long enough, most people ’s beliefs and dreams will be wiped out with time. Some of those who stay in the history books are experiencing The hard and persistent belief eventually came true, and what some people called “belief” was a delusion in itself. In the end, it not only hit the south wall, it was even nailed to the calendar. On the stigma of

history. Looking through the scrolls of history, reviewing these stories, and those people and things in the story, you will find that the turn of life is sometimes only in one thought, regardless of these “minds” Is it faith or delusion, literary thought or affection.

Every historical person or event has an unfamiliar story behind it. The purpose of this book is to tell you these stories. In Zhang Wei’s cocoon-like description History has been reduced to people with flesh and blood. Among them, there is blood, cruelty, truth, and of course, temperature.

And as visitors, we will find that history may never go away.

Editor-in-chief: Tan Wenjuan SN199

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