WMA prez denies post about Massin getting personal bodyguards

Val Barnwell: personal threat?

On Sunday, the day after Kamloops closed the books on the 4th World Masters Indoor Athletics Championships, a strange post appeared on Annette’s Seite, which covers German masters track. Translated, it read: “German competitors at the World Indoors made it known that WMA anti-doping czar Dieter Massin received temporary personal security (bodyguards) after the announcement of the positive test of Barnwell. Massin got the job after the Lahti world championships.” OMG. This I had to check out! So yesterday, when I first learned of it, I wrote to Dieter, the folks at Kamloops and Stan Perkins, president of World Masters Athletics. Almost immediately, I heard from the LOC: “This is absolutely not true!” wrote Bob Cowden, co-chairman of WMA 2010 Kamloops.

Dieter Massin, shown at Lahti General Assembly, is WMA's anti-doping chief. (Photo by Ken Stone)

Two hours later came this note, which was CC’d to Dieter Massin:

What an extraordinary and outlandish statement! Someone must have an overactive imagination to come up with this idea.

Never at any time was there any need for such a thing. The athlete concerned was very courteous and co-operative and accepted the decision with dignity.

Kamloops was a great experience for all concerned and obviously whoever wrote this article was not there.

Stan Perkins

I haven’t heard from Dieter yet. I also sought comment from Val and others.

But this is truly a strange story. What would possess “German competitors” to report something as potentially embarrassing (and paranoid) as this about Dieter, a fellow German and president of the Eurovets? His official title is chairman of the WMA Anti-Doping and Medical Committee.

Or worse: Who wanted to make it sound as if Val were a threat to Dieter? Impossible to fathom.

I’ll keep checking.

Here’s the original passage, in case it’s erased from the site:

Aus Kreisen deutscher WM-Teilnehmer wurde jetzt bekannt, dass der Antidopingbeauftragte der WMA Dieter Massin (Ahlen) nach der Veröffentlichung des positiven Barnwell-Dopingtestes während der WM in Kamloops zeitweise Personenschutz erhalten hatte. Massin hatte sein Amt erst nach der WM in Lahti angetreten.

Here’s how the story originally appeared on Annette’s Seite:

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March 10, 2010

19 Responses

  1. Anthony Treacher - March 10, 2010

    OMG indeed Ken. I can’t believe it either. BUT my original reaction to the initial failure to strongly criticise Val Barnwell for his drug infringement and the total failure (WMA abject nonsense/relay teammates’ refusal?) to return the USA relay gold medals was: PEOPLE ARE SCARED.

  2. Mike McNees - March 10, 2010

    You ask the question “What would possess ‘German competitors’ to report something as potentially embarrassing (and paranoid) as this about Dieter?”

    Given the clear statements by Mr. Perkins and Mr. Cowden, what would possess you to repeat it?

  3. Anthony Treacher - March 10, 2010

    Ken is in the clear here. The German website story is relevant and would have come to our knowledge one way or the other anyway. Ken quoted it and provided the German language original in case of doubt. Ken obtained clear denials from Mr. Perkins and Mr. Cowden. The denial from Mr. Cowden included a sympathetic description of Mr. Val Barnwell’s courteous, cooperative and dignified acceptance of the suspension decision. Ken thus added to our knowledge and hopefully corrected the impression given by the German website. Ken has here very adequately performed his task as a journalist.

  4. Robert Thomas - March 10, 2010

    This whole situation has gotten totally out of control. Lets please put it to rest so we can move forward with the rest of the season.

  5. Anthony Treacher - March 10, 2010

    Nope. And certainly not before WMA strips those USA M50 relay teammates of their gold medals.

  6. John - March 10, 2010

    I think the members of the relay team that Marion Jones ran on were stripped of their medals. It only makes sense. By the way, I just read that she has signed to play in the WNBA for the Rulsa Shock.

  7. Cornell Stephenson - March 10, 2010

    Anthony Treacher, please stop hating on the relay teammates and take Robert Thomas’s advice: “MOVE ON!”

  8. KEITH MCQUITTER - March 10, 2010

    just like tiger woods you will not stop untill someone else make a misstake or say something wrong,then you will let it go,just to make some usatf runners upset some one may start something,or ware something on there usa uniform in support of val,this may make some of you upset,but the talk wont stop.to me val is a usa team mate in his mishap IM standing up for hem,like it or note,im live in the midwest now and wont get to run in the east much in outdoor but PLEASE JUST MOVE ON,HE WHO IS WITH OUT SIN THROW THE FIST SHOTPUT

  9. Ken Stone - March 10, 2010

    Robert Koop, a lawyer in his day job, responded to my query about his original post.

    Robert wrote me today: “Ken, the story is true, that’s all.”

    He won’t reveal his sources, but I’m still seeking comment from Dieter Massin. A simple yes or no from him would suffice.

  10. gern blanstead - March 10, 2010

    Lord, who the heck would take steroids to compete in the masters championships. You have to be kidding. Ego knows no bounds I guess.

    What an embarrassment. Grandpa’s on the Juice. You have to be kidding.

    I was amazed with the seriousness of at the Wisconsin affair about athletes making sure they got credit for American records etc. Keep this in perspective folks. Sure, you get records, but don’t forget, there are only like 11 people in the country in your age category competing in your event. It hardly merits pulling out the juice so you can win a stinking USATF medal.

    A total embarrassment for the USATF senior events.This makes McQuire and those ding dongs look like Einstein’s.

    What a total waste of training and egotistical crap.

  11. Anthony Treacher - March 11, 2010

    to Cornell Stephenson and anyone else of his ilk: How on earth can my requiring the USA relay teammates to return their ill-gotten gold medals and obey the WMA rules be “hating on the relay teammates?” True, because of this I now do not respect these total strangers. But when they return the gold medals, I will. The USA relay teammates know their duty and – hopefully – so do you and all other Americans who respect the “honor system.”

    to KEITH MCQUITTER: any good point you are making is missed because you are incompehensible. On the other hand that has the advantage that your bad points are missed too.

  12. Anthony Treacher - March 11, 2010

    The mere suspicion that someone may have threatened WMA officers on account of this doping affair is very disturbing. The virolence of the bullying – unfortunately from Americans – to “forget the USA relay medals and move on” is not helping anyone either.

    The threats – if there actually were any – need not have been made at Kamloops. They could have been made any time during the 6-month period from Lahti to the suspension. Keep on it Ken.

  13. Cornell Stephenson - March 11, 2010

    Last word from me to you: A. Treacher. Until you can prove to me that you died and rose again on the third day, who cares whether or not you respect anyone.

  14. KEITH MCQUITTER - March 11, 2010

    TO ,ANTHONY TREACHER,IM not saying what was done was in any way right,cause I have lose decathlon title because some one was useing inhancements to help them proform,if god forgives ,so can A person in sports,it was wrong and he is paying for it IM just saying stop beating the man over the head with the metals,and the relay team if they are striped from the relay metals I will and so should anyone respect there desition,so why are you trying to beat up on those who have there say about val some good some bad,just cause we all dont take your side or agree with you dont make you right.respect us as athletes we are what makes the sport,

  15. Mary Harada - March 11, 2010

    Response to Cornell Stephenson:
    Amen brother, Amen.

  16. KEITH MCQUITTER - March 11, 2010

    BY THE WAY do you even still run,or just like to play rush limbar,who no one licks hem ether

  17. KEITH MCQUITTER - March 13, 2010


  18. Kevin Burgess - March 14, 2010

    Yes Keith you are right. He is NOT worth the time or the the effort no matter how small.

  19. Kevin Burgess - March 14, 2010

    Its time to move on because Val Barnewell is not worth the time or effort. Just needed to clarify that. NOT refering to anyone else.

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