Olympics: IOC president fears 'suspicion being shed on the clean athletes'

IOC president talks about fight against doping
ioc president thomas bach interview_00000000


    IOC president talks about fight against doping


IOC president talks about fight against doping 01:51

(CNN)Fans of Olympic sports can relax: winning athletes are clean, according to the games' top official.

Ahead of Friday's vote for the 2022 Winter Olympics host, IOC president Thomas Bach told CNN Sport's Alex Thomas that "sports fans can trust" the results on the field, even those in its most notorious sport -- cycling.
"I think cycling is on the right track," Bach said of the sport which only last week disqualified two riders from the Pan American Games for doping.
"We have seen a joint approach by the different stakeholders (within the sport) to fight this evil."
    Bach noted that "biological passports" -- profiles built up by collating an athlete's drug test results used to determine anomalies over time -- were in frequent use in cycling.
    Over the past few years, dozens of athletes have been suspended from cycling, as well as track and field, because of their blood level readings.
    "The biggest danger is that there is a suspicion being shed on the clean athletes," said Bach, who noted that $10 million had been earmarked by the Olympic Committee to fund anti-doping research, as well as a further $10 million to combat match fixing and corruption.
    Bach is in Malaysia, the site of the 128th IOC session which will vote on the winning bid for the 2022 Winter Games. The two finalists are Almaty, Kazakhstan and Beijing, China -- hosts of the 2008 Summer Games.
    Measures to prevent host countries running into financial ruin have also been put in place, according to Bach.
    "We want to make the games more sustainable," he said.
    Greece is famously reeling in a debt crisis, partially brought on by hosting the 2004 Summer Games at a multibillion dollar cost, while next summer's host Rio de Janeiro is gearing up its infrastructure on the heels of Brazil's 2014 World Cup.
    "Before it was like applying for a franchise, and now it is an invitation for the candidates to tell us how the Olympic Games would fit into their environment," said Bach, referring to Olympic Agenda 2020.
    Rolled out in December, the plan identifies 40 targets of reform for the Olympic Games, including reducing the cost of bidding for potential host cities, and introducing a sustainability mission for the hosts' investment plans.
    Agenda 2020 is also targeting financial transparency within the organization, as well as good governance.
    Reforms of those nature actually began 15 years ago said Bach, when sweeping changes were made following the bidding scandal for the 2002 Winter Games in Salt Lake City.
    Football's world governing body FIFA -- bedeviled by a number of corruption scandals -- has been criticized for not following the IOC's reform example.
    "What we did at the time was put everything on the table, inquiring from all different angles, (implementing) sanctions, and then undertaking structural reforms," said Bach, adding that term limits that maximize 12 years in office for IOC presidents and eight years for board members were crucial.
    "On the one hand there is some time to get things moving, but on the other hand you create a certain rotation in the system," he said.
    "Fresh blood is coming to the executive board and other organizations .. the accountability of the different members on the boards is very clear and very transparent."
    Bach emphasized that Olympic Committee members -- including himself -- were not paid for their work, receiving funds for travel costs but little else.
    "We have published our remuneration policy; you can see what every member of the IOC is getting as an indemnity," he said. "The policy is our members and our president should not make money with their positions, but also they should not lose money."
    Bach is paid $250,000 to cover his expenses, while IOC executive board members and commission heads receive a per diem of $900 a day plus $7,000 annually. Non-executive IOC members -- who include FIFA head Sepp Blatter -- receive $450 per day along with $7,000.
    FIFA has steadfastly refused to publicize the pay of its executives.
    The fact that FIFA are long overdue a similar level of reforms was not lost on Bach. So does Bach have any advice for Blatter?
    "Yes," he said, hardly able to contain a smile.