New IAAF rule proposes wiping away several world records

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A new rule proposed by the International Association of Athletics Federation could result in Paula Radcliffe and Hicham El Guerrouj being stripped of their respective world records in track and field.

A new rule would require athletes that have broken major world records to have been tested multiple times (about six times) in the lead up to their record-setting performance. The testing sample from after the record would also still need to be available for re-testing. The IAAF only started storing blood and urine samples in 2005, so any record set before that could be impacted. The records would also have to be set at competitions on a list of approved international events.

Radcliffe ran 2:15:25 for the women’s world record at the 2003 London Marathon. Hicham El Guerrouj holds the 1,500 meter world record of 3:26.00. Other records that would be wiped away include Florence Griffith-Joyner’s 100 meter and 200 meter world records of 10.49 and 21.34, which no one has come close to in recent years. Usain Bolt’s world records in the sprints would be safe since he set them in 2008 and 2009.

The proposal was discussed at a European Athletics council meeting over the weekend. IAAF president Seb Coe was in attendance and is in favor of the proposal. The IAAF could approve the proposal in July and implement it within the next 12 months.