Nairobi, Apr 27 : World Half Marathon record holder Kenya's Abraham Kiptum will not compete in Sunday's London Marathon as he was suspended provisionally by the IAAF after failing a dope test.
Kiptum, who was in London when the news broke on Friday night, has since been released and is heading home in Eldoret.
Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) confirmed that the Kenyan's blood sample had shown anomalies in his Athletes Blood Passport (ABP). The athlete is charged for Use of a Prohibited Substance/Method (Article 2.2) - ABP case. "The AIU confirms a provisional suspension against Kenyan long-distance runner Abraham Kiptum for an Athlete Biological Passport (ABP) violation under the IAAF (International Association of Athletics Federations) Anti-Doping Rules," the AIU said in a statement.
The passport uses blood tests to detect the likelihood of doping rather than testing for specific substances. The AIU states provisional suspensions are mandatory under IAAF anti-doping rules.
"We have a zero-tolerance policy on doping," London Marathon director Hugh Brasher said in a statement.
"London is part of the Abbott World Marathon Majors and we recently announced a groundbreaking extensive intelligence-driven testing program." The 29-year-old Kenyan sprung into the limelight last year when he won Daegu Marathon in 2:06:29 on April 1 before going on to break the eight-year-old World Half Marathon record in Valencia Half Marathon in 58:18 on October 28. He shuttered Eritrean Zersenay Tadese's previous record of 58:23 set at Lisbon Half Marathon on March 21, 2010.
The Kenyan set his personal best of 2:05:26 when finishing third at Amsterdam Marathon in October. Kiptum made his marathon debut in Lagos back in 2016 and won in a slow time of 2:16:19 but it was in the half marathon distance that he carved his niche. He won the Madrid Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon in Spain and Casablanca Half Marathon.
He joins two other Kenyans who have been banned for ABP related violations. They are former Tokyo Marathon champion Sarah Chepchirchir and 5,000m runner Cyrus Rutto.
A World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) report said between 2004 and Aug. 1, 2018, as many as 138 athletes from the east African nation tested positive for banned substances, 113 in competition.