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PRRO Allied Membership Announced

02/02/2020
The Professional Road Running Organization (PRRO), launched in 1995, is an alliance of race directors who together organize and promote the PRRO Circuit, a nationwide series of premier non-marathon road racing events offering significant prize purses to elite athletes.

Through its Clean Sport Initiative (CSI), PRRO has been a strong advocate in the fight against performance enhancing drugs (PEDs). Since 2006, the PRRO Circuit has been a long-time pioneer and champion of a clean sport. PRRO Circuit events cover the drug testing costs of top finishers at their events, including both pre-competition and day- of-race testing.

What is PRRO Allied Membership?

PRRO Allied Membership is an affordable, collective way for road races who may not be in a position to afford the full cost of drug testing an opportunity to join PRRO’s Clean Sport Initiative (CSI) in the fight against performance enhancing drugs (PEDs) by becoming part of a pre-competition drug testing pool.

Why is PRRO offering Allied Membership to races?

PRRO would like to build on its commitment to Clean Sport by offering Allied Memberships to events offering small prize purses who wish to have their events included in a pre-competition drug testing pool. Testing by PRRO, USA Track & Field (USATF), and the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) is limited to the very top runners in the sport, creating gaps that allows many elite athletes to "cherry-pick" races to avoid being tested. With the introduction of PRRO Allied Memberships, we can close those gaps by introducing the possibility of drug testing at more events, bringing an element of uncertainty into the minds of athletes who may be using performance enhancing drugs. Your membership will expand the drug testing universe to help deter drug cheats from coming to your event. As a PRRO Allied Member, your event will also avoid the full cost of pre- and in- competition drug testing, which at roughly $10,000 is unaffordable for many races.

What races are eligible to join as Allied Members?

Any road race in the U.S. that offers any amount of prize money can become a PRRO Allied Member.

How would the testing work?

PRRO Allied Members become part of a pre-competition drug testing pool. If your event is chosen, two elite competitors at the event will be selected for pre-competition testing on race weekend. Testing will be conducted by Clearidium, an IAAF certified drug testing company, with results submitted to the IAAF. Pre-competition testing involves no additional race day organizational burden for race directors and additional volunteers; the only requirement for pre-competition testing is for race organizers to assist the drug testing team in locating athletes targeted for testing.

What obligations does the event have?

  • Publicize that drug testing may occur on race weekend, which is critical for transparency and will also serve as a deterrent.

  • Prominently feature the tagline "PRRO Allied Member—Supporting Clean Sport" and in race publicity and social media as well as the hashtag #CleanSport.

  • If chosen for testing, the event will coordinate with Clearidium, PRRO's drug testing provider, for athletes’ selection and testing. This coordination will consist mostly of informing the assigned Clearidium representative where the elite athletes are staying on race weekend. No other volunteers or logistics should be needed.

  • No prize money should be paid to any athletes until given the green light from Clearidium, which typically takes about one month after race weekend.

  • In accordance with best practices, Allied Member events should also maintain the PRRO policy of not paying travel or lodging for anyone returning to competition after a two-year or longer drug ban. Event Directors can verify the status of any elite athletes entered into their race at the following website, www.dopingsanctions.com.

    What if there's a positive test?

  • Adjudication of any positive result is handled by the IAAF, at no cost to the event. Suspension of the athlete is handled by the IAAF.

  • The event must maintain confidentiality about any positive tests until a final result is announced.

  • Other athletes may be paid prize money earned. What are the benefits to the event?

PRRO Allied Members will be provided a logo with the tagline to be included on entry form, website, social media and other publicity: “PRRO Allied Member— Supporting Clean Sport” This branding shows athletes, the media, sponsors and your community that the event has joined the fight against performance-enhancing drugs by becoming part of the pre-competition drug testing pool.  PRRO will publicize Allied Members in press releases, social media and on the PRRO website: http://www.PRRO.org

What does Allied Membership cost?

The cost is $500 per year for events with fewer than 3,000 runners, and $1,000 for events with more than 3,000 (including all events on race weekend). These funds will be used to help fund increased testing. Partial costs of the Allied Membership program are being underwritten by a grant from MarathonGuide.com.

How does my event join?

Contact PRRO President Don Kardong at donkardong@bloomsdayrun.org, and inquire about our introductory offer.

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