East german athletes on steroids

We always want to be world champions, no matter what the cost. It's okay to want to be world champion, but if you want to do it "no matter what the cost" then it is a dangerous game. Sport has changed. In sport these days, as a young man, you can earn good money. You become a national product, people love you and you are a celebrity. But the athletes often don't know the risks they are exposing themselves to. The system is very strong, and there are many vested interests. When we tell this story of what happened in the former East Germany, we are also trying to educate people involved in sport today.

The exhibition looks at the fascinating and complex history of illegal attempts by athletes to leave the GDR . Between the country’s founding in 1949 and the fall of the Wall in 1989, more than 3 million people left the German Democratic Republic, many illegally and under dangerous circumstances. Sports, an area strongly promoted by the SED regime to improve its international reputation, was deeply affected by this emigration. Hundreds of top athletes turned their backs on East Germany, seeking a new future in the ideologically suspect West. Fleeing the republic turned them into “traitors” in the eyes of the political leadership.

In a statement responding to the allegations, the Azerbaijan Athletics Federation says: “It is true that Ms L Abdullayeva has indeed competed as an athlete in Azerbaijan during the period of 2009-13. However, it should be pointed out that she had not entered into any contractual arrangement with the Azerbaijan Athletics Federation.” It adds that she was competing for an individual sports club and that “she has received all due prize money. The Federation refutes her allegations as baseless that she is still somehow due some prize money.

But Götz had no regrets and went on to win the UEFA Cup in 1988 with his new West German team, Bayer Leverkusen. But life in the West did not mean he, or others, had escaped the clutches of the Stasi (indeed, he later found out that the Stasi had, within their files, photographs of his new home in West Germany). Cases of defectors drugged and smuggled back East, although rare, were not unheard of. A friend of Götz in West Germany, a fellow East German, was killed in a car accident. Götz, suspecting it was no accident, feared for his own life.

East german athletes on steroids

east german athletes on steroids

But Götz had no regrets and went on to win the UEFA Cup in 1988 with his new West German team, Bayer Leverkusen. But life in the West did not mean he, or others, had escaped the clutches of the Stasi (indeed, he later found out that the Stasi had, within their files, photographs of his new home in West Germany). Cases of defectors drugged and smuggled back East, although rare, were not unheard of. A friend of Götz in West Germany, a fellow East German, was killed in a car accident. Götz, suspecting it was no accident, feared for his own life.

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