Max Knox banned for doping offence

TOP South African mountain biker Max Knox has been found guilty of a doping offense and banned for four years, the South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport (SAIDS) announced today. He was charged for suspicious variations in his Athlete Biological Passport (ABP) that indicated doping. He could not satisfactorily explain to a panel of international experts appointed by SAIDS the reasons for the variation.

Knox is a former South African Marathon MTB champion (2012 and 2016), a three-time overall winner of the National MTB Series (2012, 2015 and 2016) and represented South Africa several times at the world cross country and marathon championships. In terms of the ruling, he will be stripped of all his titles from June 16, 2015 and will have to return all prize money, prizes and medals gained since that date.

 

Knox’s ABP was monitored from February 2013 to June 2017. Irregularities included an artificially increased haemoglobin concentration over a period of time and bone marrow stimulation followed by immediate bone marrow suppression. The ABP was reviewed in conjunction with the cyclist’s competition schedules, race results and intelligence supplied to SAIDS. Knox’s explanations and supporting documents were rejected by the international panel as not providing explanations for the ABP changes and irregularities. Mr. Knox lodged an appeal against the initial decision, but failed to file any documentation for his appeal within the prescribed filing period.

 

Knox is one of three mountain bikers given doping bans in the past 18 months as a result of a year-long investigation and tip-offs from whistleblowers. SAIDS’s CEO, Khalid Galant, said that the convictions arose from the first phase of an investigation being undertaken in collaboration with the Department of Priority Crimes and Investigations (the Hawks). The investigation will “continue to look at athletes, medical doctors, coaches and trainers and whether they have a role in a doping supply network”.

 

Earlier this year SAIDS announced that one of the three mountain bikers found guilty of doping offences in the investigation was Shan Wilson, who was banned for six years after being found guilty of doping on five counts. These included: the presence of a prohibited substance or its metabolites or markers in a sample; trafficking or attempted trafficking in any prohibited substance or prohibited method; and complicity (being involved with others in acts that are breaches of the regulations). Wilson was initially tested in-competition on March 25, 2014. A female mountain biker was banned for two years after an adverse analytical finding for EPO (Erythropoietin) when she was tested on the 3rd of March this year.

 

“The investigation was triggered in significant part by whistleblowers and we are very grateful to their efforts to keep sport clean,” said Galant. “We do take tip-offs about any sporting discipline or individuals seriously and encourage people with good information to come forward. Any information remain strictly confidential and can be submitted via our website on an anonymous basis.”

 

Max Knox's response:


Max Knox Letter.jpg
Max Knox Letter 1.jpg




46 Comments

RocknRolla, Oct 16 2018 08:25

Admin, can be ban Max Knox from the Hub?

Plentipotential, Oct 16 2018 09:04

Ban Max Knob as well.

FourieR, Oct 16 2018 09:25

Kudos to Lesotho Sky back in 2015. https://lesothosky.com/doping-ban/

Pure Savage, Oct 16 2018 09:41

No i would not want to put out any names on a public forum, unfounded allegations are not cool. There are however still a number of people closely associated with the last 4 busts that have not gone down yet

So there are riders that have doped that are currently racing and taking sponsors money, great. 

Pure Savage, Oct 16 2018 09:45

"A female mountain biker was banned for two years after an adverse analytical finding for EPO (Erythropoietin) when she was tested on the 3rd of March this year."
Carmen Buchacher. No need to omit names here, come on.

A bit like Voldemort?

BuffsVintageBikes, Oct 16 2018 10:25

From Open through to Masters, it's happening all the time in SA and abroad and pretty freely available if you talk to the right people.

Phatman, Oct 16 2018 11:47

A bit like Voldemort?


It's "Lord" Valdemort to you, please and thank you.

Headshot, Oct 16 2018 12:11

I also hear the stories and I don't even race marathons. The mind boggles that guys like Knox and Wilson thought they could get away with it ( and did for years ) and took the risk. I wonder if these athletes would still have done well in the sport without the drugs? I suspect they would have because they would simply have trained harder... That said, I think doping is like corruption. Once it becomes the norm in a sport or country, the incentive to cheat is massive. I wonder how clean the top international riders are?

DjCyclist, Oct 16 2018 12:34

Sad only the pro okes get caught. i think in this main stream stage race every weekend mtb culture we have there are a lot of uncles who have cash to through at Dr.Brink for apparent Iron probs or athlete induced astmha or something. In the big fields there are some okes that are dik on sous but too many to control. 
be weary of your local club ride mate more than these pro"s.
Almal sous klim op die trein en ry!


So agree with you on this I've seen guys improve tremendously, I'm like what's he doing different to what I'm doing, i know hard work pays off but shu some guys just get super fast over night

Ramrod, Oct 16 2018 12:48

Sad only the pro okes get caught. i think in this main stream stage race every weekend mtb culture we have there are a lot of uncles who have cash to through at Dr.Brink for apparent Iron probs or athlete induced astmha or something. In the big fields there are some okes that are dik on sous but too many to control. 

be weary of your local club ride mate more than these pro"s.

Almal sous klim op die trein en ry!

My GP is a DR.Brink ???

Craig Warren Hulscher, Oct 16 2018 02:26

From Tread magazine:

 

In the past, you have raced as a teammate with three riders that have been caught for using performance-enhancing practices/substances. This, combined with your ability to put minutes into your South African rivals has raised widespread suspicion about whether you are also doping. What is your position on this situation?

I do not dope. My racing results have been consistent from when I turned professional in 2006, through the implementation of the ADAMS system in 2009 and the implementation of the biological passport in 2012. I’m fully committed to clean sport.

Whaaaaaa haaaaa!! "I'm fully committed to clean sport!!" ...Really!! Maybe he thought they were asking about washing powder!  

Alastair_S1D, Oct 16 2018 08:42

I read stuff like this and I think to myself, I finished the Satellite this weekend past in 2:39:35 and the winner in 2:35:18. Am I 4 and a bit minutes behind because I need to train more or am I 4 mins behind cause I race with cheaters?  Blegh this can be a big bummer on ones motivation.

J Wakefield, Oct 17 2018 08:20

I read stuff like this and I think to myself, I finished the Satellite this weekend past in 2:39:35 and the winner in 2:35:18. Am I 4 and a bit minutes behind because I need to train more or am I 4 mins behind cause I race with cheaters?  Blegh this can be a big bummer on ones motivation.

 

Take this as you will but I went on your strava profile after this post and did some basic analysing. If you are uploading all your training to it to answer your question on wether you lose to cheaters is simply no, you just not good enough to win when I look at your data unfortunately. Power / VAM values are significantly below what the winners are producing and you not consistent in your training. Your 4min off was also on a pretty flat route with a small climb at the end. Should you go to MPU Tour for example you would be in some trouble.

You need to start training smarter with more specificity in order to close that gap.

Keep it up.

Odinson, Oct 17 2018 10:32

Can Admin change the title to "Max Knob"?  Just claim it as a finger error. 

VicanZA, Oct 17 2018 08:46

I say don’t ban him, let him come on here and come clean, his got time and I think it would add a human element to this story. 4 years is a long time, gonna have to look for a job like the rest of us. There has to be a path back redemption..

RocknRolla, Oct 18 2018 07:53

I say don’t ban him, let him come on here and come clean, his got time and I think it would add a human element to this story. 4 years is a long time, gonna have to look for a job like the rest of us. There has to be a path back redemption..

 

The pun is not lost on me.

maidenmole, Oct 18 2018 05:57

SAIDS report. Makes for fascinating reading ...

 

http://www.drugfrees...-v-Max-Knox.pdf

DirtyDan, Oct 19 2018 01:31

Kudos to Lesotho Sky back in 2015. https://lesothosky.com/doping-ban/

 

Suppose beating the runner-up pros by an hour and a half overall in a 360km stage race isn't exactly going to slide unnoticed...

DirtyDan, Oct 19 2018 01:40

Makes me look at the current elite field, some of the riders I look up to in the sport, and wonder...

 

Look and wonder...

ccs-62657-0-64875900-1539766250.jpg

J Wakefield, Oct 19 2018 04:42

Makes me look at the current elite field, some of the riders I look up to in the sport, and wonder...

 

Look and wonder...

ccs-62657-0-64875900-1539766250.jpg

 

 

Who you think or look and wonder is playing outside the field then in that pic??

fourbar, Oct 23 2018 05:07

Interesting to read and compare the contents of the official transcript of his anti-doping disciplinary hearing and the letter from his attorneys in the form of a media release. It's also interesting to note that he willingly participated in the hearing without legal representation (April 2018), only to bring his lawyers on board at the time that he had to file his heads of argument (May 2018). Now it seems that they raise "credibility" as an inference drawn to make the finding. Interesting to see that  Dr Jeroen Swart was part of the panel who tested his blood sample. I rate Jeroen. Watch this space.