Richmond Oval to host world-class anti-doping program for 2010 Winter Games



    INRS to manage anti-doping laboratory; first anti-doping volunteers start
    training

    VANCOUVER, July 16 /CNW/ - The Vancouver Organizing Committee for the
2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC) is significantly closer to
its goal of hosting doping-free Games in 2010 with two major announcements
today on the anti-doping program and laboratory for the 2010 Winter Games: the
anti-doping laboratory will be located at the Richmond Oval (home to long
track speed skating for the 2010 Games) and that Montreal's Institut national
de la recherche scientifique (INRS)-Institut Armand-Frappier, Canada's only
World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA)-accredited laboratory, will operate the
state-of-the art testing program for the Games.
    "From the beginning, our goal has been to host doping-free Games in 2010
by operating the most sophisticated anti-doping program in a fully accredited
laboratory that leaves a tangible legacy after the Games," said Cathy
Priestner Allinger, VANOC executive vice president, sport and Games
operations. "Much time and effort has been invested over the past year to
ensure we secured the optimum location for the anti-doping laboratory and the
very best team to operate this critical and highly technical facility. The
Richmond Oval gives us an exceptional location for the anti-doping laboratory
and, coupled with the expertise provided by Dr. Ayotte and her team from the
INRS, we are guaranteed to have a world-class anti-doping program in place for
the 2010 Winter Games."
    In its business planning, VANOC had budgeted $4.1 million for the
facilitation of the anti-doping program and sought a partner to provide an
existing or new facility to house the laboratory. Over the past year, VANOC
pursued numerous options for the lab including using existing domestic and
international accredited laboratories and potentially using local public or
private laboratory facilities. After undertaking all due diligence, it was
ultimately determined that a new facility at the Richmond Oval would ensure an
anti-doping laboratory for the 2010 Games that would meet the highest
international standards. The incremental net cost of building a new laboratory
is estimated at $5 million and will be covered in economies within the overall
VANOC operating budget.
    The City of Richmond is supporting VANOC by providing 15,000 square feet
of space to host the anti-doping laboratory. The Richmond Oval space meets the
multitude of WADA-mandated technical and physical attributes necessary to
ensure the laboratory's integrity, including such elements as seismic
requirements, geographic location and sufficient space. After the Games, the
Oval will become an international centre of excellence for sport and wellness
and its flexible design will allow it to be used for a variety of sport and
community functions.
    "In addition to being an outstanding venue that will warmly host
spectators and showcase the world's greatest athletes, we are delighted to
know that the Richmond Oval will play a critical role in ensuring fair play
during the 2010 Olympic Winter Games," said Richmond Mayor Malcolm Brodie.
    The INRS is renowned for its expertise of more than 30 years in the
international testing of athlete samples from all sports. During the 2010
Winter Games, its staff will operate the anti-doping laboratory and manage the
testing of up to 2,450 urine and blood samples. Setup for the anti-doping
laboratory will take place between January 2009 and December 2009 and include
the installation of state-of-the-art instruments, a transfer of methods and a
validation of procedures. The process will be completed by a thorough audit of
the laboratory's operations by the Standard Council of Canada and WADA to
ensure compliance with the highest international standards in time for the
testing of samples collected during the Games.
    "We are proud to be a part of the excellent anti-doping program underway
for the 2010 Winter Games," said Dr. Christiane Ayotte, director of the Doping
Control Laboratory of the INRS. "Our team looks forward to contributing to
ensure all athletes can compete on a level playing field."

    2010 Winter Games anti-doping program mandate and volunteer program:

    Under the authority and direction of the International Olympic Committee
(IOC) and the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), VANOC's 2010 Winter
Games anti-doping program has two primary objectives: the implementation of a
state-of-the-art testing program at Sport Events and the 2010 Winter Games to
detect and deter doping behaviour, and the execution of an extensive education
program for athletes and their support teams about their rights and
responsibilities regarding anti-doping rules and procedures.
    VANOC will recruit 500 volunteers to act as Doping Control Officers
(DCOs), Blood Collection Officers (BCOs) and Chaperones for the implementation
of the anti-doping program. To date, VANOC has interviewed 50 potential
anti-doping volunteers, who will be specifically assigned to the anti-doping
program.
    "I was a first aid and anti-doping volunteer for trampoline and tumble
gymnastics and it was exciting to be a part of such an important aspect of the
event," said Christopher Reedy, age 28, from Surrey, the first potential
anti-doping volunteer to begin anti-doping training last weekend. "With the
number of athletes and the size of the Games, it really made me want to
contribute to keeping the competition clean," he said.
    The first training session for confirmed anti-doping volunteers will be
hosted in Vancouver in September 2008. The session will take place in
collaboration with the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport (CCES) to ensure
that DCOs and BCOs have the requisite training to fully participate in the
Sport Events to be hosted in the Games region during the 2008-2009 competitive
winter season.

    Additional Background:

    INRS (Institut national de la recherche scientifique) :

    The INRS is composed of four university research and formation centres.
The scientists of the Doping Control Laboratory located in the Centre
INRS-Institut Armand-Frappier, have been involved for more than 30 years,
since the Montreal 1976 Olympic Games, in the detection of doping agents
prohibited in sport. Part of a network of 33 international laboratories
recognized by the World Anti-Doping Agency, it is the only one in Canada, and
one of only three in North America. Each year, the INRS Laboratory analyzes
around 15,000 samples from national and international sport organizations.

    City of Richmond:

    The City of Richmond is an official Venue City for the 2010 Winter Games.
The 33,000-square-metre Richmond Oval is scheduled to open in fall of 2008 and
will be home to speed skating competitions during the 2010 Olympic Winter
Games. The Richmond Oval will become an international centre of excellence for
sports and wellness, special events and other activities post-Games. The
Richmond Oval is being constructed by, and will be owned by, the City of
Richmond.

    About VANOC:

    VANOC is responsible for the planning, organizing, financing and staging
of the XXI Olympic Winter Games and the X Paralympic Winter Games in 2010. The
2010 Olympic Winter Games will be staged in Vancouver and Whistler from
February 12 to 28, 2010. Vancouver and Whistler will host the 2010 Paralympic
Winter Games from March 12 to 21, 2010. Visit www.vancouver2010.com.

    /NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available on
    the CNW Photo Network and archived at http://photos.newswire.ca.
    Additional archived images are also available on the CNW Photo Archive
    website at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited
    members of the media/





For further information:

For further information: VANOC, Mary Fraser, Vancouver 2010, (778)
328-3667; VANOC, John Gibson, Vancouver 2010, (778) 328-3085; INRS - Institut
Armand-Frappier, Nathalie Veillette, nathalie.veillette@iaf.inrs.ca, (450)
687-5010 x 8807; City of Richmond, Ted Townsend, ttownsend@richmond.ca, (604)
276-4399

Organization Profile

VANCOUVER ORGANIZING COMMITTEE FOR THE 2010 OLYMPIC AND PARALYMPIC WINTER GAMES

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