“Do I think it was racist? I just think it was unfair. It was incompetence. The way my name was thrown out there, you have to find out who leaked it – that will give you more answers. You can make a better judgment after you find that out.”
Bol says he felt like he was “being framed” after being blindsided by the doping furore in which he finds himself.
‘Do I think it was racist? I just think it was unfair. It was incompetence.’
Peter Bol on the investigation into one of his drug tests
When he handed over his phone and laptop to SIA officials, the 29-year-old said he became paranoid about researching what he was being accused of taking.
“I couldn’t Google to see what I was getting done for,” he said. “I was worried they were going to see what I was looking up. I went on Netflix and started watching the Lance Armstrong documentary and thought they might notice that. I couldn’t research anything because I felt like I was getting framed.”
Bol and his US-based lawyer Paul Greene did a round of interviews on Wednesday morning following the Herald’s report.
He said that SIA officials had instructed them they would meet him and Greene in March as part of their ongoing investigation – but he hadn’t heard from them.
“This month I’m supposed to be at an interview with Sport Integrity and I haven’t heard, and the month is about to get over,” Bol told The Today Show.
Greene added: “I heard rumours that I was involved in delaying the interview, which is complete hogwash. We are ready to be interviewed at any time. I’ll come down there [to Australia] for the interview. They haven’t responded to us at all. There is no investigation – because there is nothing to investigate.”
Two independent laboratories cleared Bol of using EPO, the drug made infamous by disgraced Tour de France cyclist Lance Armstrong, prompting Greene to accuse SIA of making a “catastrophic blunder”.
Erythropoietin is a naturally occurring hormone produced by the kidneys but, in synthetic form, can turbocharge performance and aid recovery by increasing an athlete’s red-blood-cell count.
Norwegian professors Jon Nissen-Meyer, Tore Skotland, Erik Boye and Bjarne Osterud concluded Bol’s tests indicated “a large amount of natural EPO in his sample”.
A second analysis, from Dr David Chen at the University of British Columbia, was more damning of SIA’s findings. “The numbers showed absolutely no evidence for the presence of any [synthetic] EPO in the two samples tested,” Chen said in his report. “Only naturally occurring endogenous erythropoietin was observed.”
Greene continued his attack on the EPO testing process, which is considered by many to be too subjective. The SAR-Page test involves the sample being spread across five strips and gel applied before a determination is made on whether there is too much EPO in an athlete’s body.
“These WADA labs are generalists,” Greene said. “They don’t have the expertise to understand this test: this urine/gel EPO test. It’s not a straightforward analysis looking at a urine sample. This a subjective analysis and they couldn’t do it right. They didn’t know what they are doing.
“I begged them not to announce it, but now that they are obviously wrong they are refusing to drop this sham investigation. They have no evidence at all. People can’t be convicted under shadows and whispers.”
News, results and expert analysis from the weekend of sport sent every Monday. Sign up for our Sport newsletter.