German knocks Bolt 

Bolt believes his sport has turned the corner in the fight to cleanse itself. (Photo: Bryan Cummings)

BERLIN, Germany (AFP) — Germany’s outspoken Olympic discus champion Robert Harting has criticised sprint superstar Usain Bolt for not speaking out more in the fight to clean up athletics.

HARTING...I would ask him (Bolt) why he does not go on the offensive, in any way, on the subject of doping

HARTING…I would ask him (Bolt) why he does not go on the offensive, in any way, on the subject of doping

The 29-year-old Bolt will attempt to win the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay titles for a third-straight Games before bidding farewell from the Olympic stage in Rio.

Bolt’s retirement will be another blow to a sport suffering the fallout from a Russian State-sponsored doping scandal and corruption allegations against the former leadership of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF).

Harting had hard words last month for International Olympic Committee ((IOC) President Thomas Bach, whom he branded “part of the doping system”, over the IOC’s decision not to blanket ban Russian sportsmen and women in Rio.

“I would ask him (Bolt) why he does not go on the offensive, in any way, on the subject of doping,” Harting told magazine

Sport Bild.

“The best-known athlete in the world must join the current discussions and fight for a clean sport, especially since a lot of sprinters

have tested positive.

But Bolt has consistently spoken out against the use of performance-enhancing drugs in athletics and is on record as saying that those found guilty should not escape punishment.

In fact, after American sprinter Tyson Gay tested positive for banned anabolic steroids in 2013, and was banned for only one year by the United States Anti-Doping Agency after co-operating with the organisation, Bolt said that Gay should have been kicked out of the sport.

“You have to drive fear into athletes, to make them think about the consequences of their actions. If they’re getting an easy penalty why would they care?” he said at the time.

Speaking in Rio, ahead of the start of the athletics programme tomorrow, Bolt said he believes his sport has turned the corner in the fight to cleanse itself.

“We’re weeding out the bad ones. I personally think we’re on the right track,” said the Jamaican.

Harting, who won world titles in 2009, 2011 and 2013, is well known for the high-intensity levels of his celebration after his victories, including ripping the shirt off his chest, running with a German flag over the hurdles from the hurdles race, or placing mascots on his shoulders and jogging on the track.

One of Harting’s celebrations was so epic that he was sued for ‘insulting the German State’ by one irate fan who thought that when Harting ripped his German singlet he was basically ripping the German flag.

— Additional reporting

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