Tag Archives: Neil Black

Alberto Salazar got a £125,000 bonus after sacking

Mo Farah’s disgraced former coach was paid a six-figure bonus partly out of National Lottery funding even though UK Athletics had dropped him as a consultant, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.

Alberto Salazar received £125,000 for his role between 2012 and 2016 as a bonus for helping Farah to win Olympic gold, an email obtained via a Freedom of Information request has shown. A part of that sum was public money in the form of National Lottery funding.

Salazar was paid the medal bonus even though UKA dropped a consultancy arrangement with the American coach following a BBC Panorama investigation into his methods in 2015.

The email obtained by this newspaper reveals that, in March 2017, an employee of UK Sport wrote: ‘Alberto Salazar received 125K medal bonus from UKA following [redacted] medal winning performances. Salazar’s [sic] was not contracted or employed by the sport.

[Redacted] confirmed that the funding to pay Salazar’s bonus … in the Rio cycle was from WCP [World Class Performance] pot and not UK Athletics own money.’

It can be assumed the bonuses were due to Farah’s medal-winning performances. A later email from UK Athletics states: ‘2013-2017 Olympic Coach bonus policy … Alberto Salazar (Mo Farah — men’s 5000m/10,000m)’.

Farah won double gold medals at 5,000m and 10,000m at the World Championships in 2013 and 2015 and at the Rio Olympics in 2016. He also won double gold at the 2012 London Olympics when coached by Salazar, though it appears these payments do not relate to that period.

UK Athletics, who initially hired Salazar in 2013, wanted Farah to cut ties with the coach following the BBC investigation. UKA coaches, the late Neil Black and Barry Fudge, however, strongly resisted.

Farah therefore was still using Salazar until 2017, meaning the coach still qualified for the performance bonuses. Salazar’s consultancy was role was always informal, was not contractual and he was not paid for it by UKA. As it transpired, only Farah among UK athletes made use of his coaching methods.

World Class Performance refers to UK Sport’s National Lottery funding of leading Olympians, although as is made clear, the rules changed after 2016 so that Lottery money was not used to pay coach bonuses.

A later email from UKA states that what they describe as the World Class Performance ‘pot’ to pay Salazar’s bonuses came from UK Sport money and ‘co funding from the main sponsor at the time’. The Rio cycle refer to the years running up to the 2016 Rio Olympics, 2013-2016.

However, UK Sport sent a number of emails in 2017 quizzing UKA about the arrangements. An employee at UK Sport also emphasised in the March 2017 email that the new funding agreement ‘also highlights an expectation that if a WCP [funded athlete] were entering into an unusual, novel or potentially contentious arrangement that they would they would discuss with UKS [UK Sport] prior to doing this.’

Source: dailymail.co.uk

Former Mo Farah aide Jama Aden could face prison over doping offences

Jama Aden, the coach who guided Genzebe Dibaba to the 1500m world record and worked as an “unofficial facilitator” with Mo Farah when he trained in Ethiopia, could face up to four and a half years in prison if found guilty of alleged doping offences, according to reports.

The Spanish paper El País said it has seen the prosecutor’s report on Aden, which accuses the British-Somali coach of putting the health of his elite athletes at risk by providing them with up to eight types of substances and medications to improve their performance.

The news follows police raids in June 2016 on several premises in the Catalonian town of Sabadell where Aden and his athletes were staying. Six doctors from the IAAF, athletics’ world governing body – which had been monitoring Aden for three years – and officials from the Spanish Anti-Doping Agency found different types of the banned drug EPO and 19 syringes preloaded and ready to use.

While none of Aden’s athletes who were present subsequently tested positive for banned substances he has been under investigation ever since. El País’s report says the prosecutor’s report concludes the trainer did provide his athletes with substances prohibited in sport in Spain and “medicines that did not have the administrative authorisation” to be marketed in Spain and that, therefore, were “absolutely clandestine”.

Although no trial date has been set, prosecutors want the maximum penalty for Aden and his trusted physiotherapist, Ouarid Mounir, although whether they are able to extradite Aden from Qatar, where he is now based, is another story.

In 2016, British Athletics confirmed Aden had only ever been an “unofficial facilitator” for Farah for a week when he trained in Ethiopia in 2015 with his duties limited to shouting out times as Farah ran laps round the track in the Ethiopian town of Sululta.

A spokesman for British Athletics said Aden had helped Farah when the performance director, Neil Black, and the head of endurance, Barry Fudge, were not around, and they had subsequently changed their rules.

Farah was also photographed with Aden in February 2016 when he trained alongside some of the Somali’s athletes at another camp in Ethiopia. “All Aden did, for a very short period of time, was to hold a stopwatch and shout out times to athletes as they completed their track sessions,” the spokesman added. “There was no coaching or anything technical involved.”

In 2016, a spokesperson for Farah said: “Jama has nothing to do with Mo as an athlete or his training. But occasionally they are in the same place at a track for a training session alongside many other athletes and coaches from across the world. Mo is always with a British Athletics person and of course they will speak to him and be courteous if they bump in to each other but Jama has no input into Mo’s training whatsoever.”

In a statement to the Observer the Athletics Integrity said it had noted the El País report. “The AIU has been in close contact with the Spanish authorities from the outset of this matter,” it said. “We will continue to monitor the proceedings and take any action necessary to protect the integrity of athletics.”

theguardian.com