Jones out of World Cup

Former Olympic champion Marion Jones has pulled out of the Athletics World Cup this weekend and has said she won't race again in 2006.

    In top condition: Marion Jones

    In a statement released through her lawyer, Jones said she didn't feel race fit after a forced lay-off from a doping allegation which proved to be false.

    "I was in top condition when my season was interrupted more than three weeks ago by the leak of the positive 'A' sample," the 30 year said via her statement.
      
    "August and September is the peak of each track season, and it's the races that keep you sharp and in race shape. Unfortunately, I just don't feel that my race conditioning is there."

    Reports that Jones' "A" sample at the US Athletics championships in June had tested positive for the banned drug EPO were released in the media in August.

    In September she learned her "B" sample was negative thus exonerating her, however she had already withdrawn from the Golden League meeting in Zurich and hasn't competed since.

    The triple gold medallist at the Sydney Olympics won the 100m at the US Championships in June and therefore qualified for the 100m and 4x100m relay at the World Cup, but despite being listed in the USA team, the USATF said that at the time she had not yet confirmed her participation.

    Since her Olympic triumph Jones has been dogged by doping accusations and after failing at the 2004 Olympics in Athens stated she hoped to start a comeback to prepare herself for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

    At the Golden League meeting in Paris on July 8, Jones broke the 11-second barrier for the first time since 2002 to win the women's 100m in 10.92sec.

    SOURCE: AFP


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