Notable drug scandals
Doping & drug infractions that rocked the sports world
July 27, 2006
Disgraced Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson tested positive for the anabolic steroid stanozolol at the 1988 Seoul Olympics. (Getty Images)
Ben Johnson: Canada's shame
Hero to goat.
Johnson captured the imagination of Canadians on Sept. 27, 1988, when he won the 100-metre sprint title in a world-record time of 9.79 seconds at the Seoul Olympics. To make the victory even sweeter, Johnson captured the gold medal by handily defeating American rival Carl Lewis.
The euphoria of Johnson's win didn't last, however, when it was found the Canadian tested positive for the anabolic steroid stanozolol.
Johnson's claim that the positive test stemmed from a spiked herbal drink the night before the race was unfounded (not that his positive test was any surprise, considering his inflated deltoid muscles and jaundiced eyes, but how many Canadians wanted to believe that?).
Johnson was subsequently stripped of his gold medal and world record and banned from competition for two years. The disgrace of the event was a black eye on Canadian amateur sport and pushed the drugs-in-sport issue to the forefront like never before.
Nearly 15 years later, it was discovered that several American track athletes tested positive for drugs before those same Seoul Games. Allegedly among them was Lewis, who was awarded the gold medal after Johnson's disqualification.
It appears that Johnson became the goat for all.