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Lionel Sanders: ‘Was I trying to keep up with a dude who was juicing?’

Lionel Sanders: 'Was I trying to keep up with a dude who was juicing?'

Canadian star Lionel Sanders posted an emotional statement on Instagram with his thoughts on the news that his training partner Collin Chartier tested positive for Erythropoietin (EPO) and has received a three-year ban from the sport.

“It’s OK to be upset because this is my existence,” Sanders said. “Cheating…brings all of your integrity into question.”

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“Collin was staying with me,” Sanders said. “Now I start to wonder, because of this, was he juicing at my apartment? He did go from didn’t know much about him to winning Dallas. Was I trying to keep up with a dude who was juicing?”

Sanders, who holds smashed the Canadian Hour Record in October 2020, shares the same coach as Chartier, Mikal Iden, the brother of reigning Ironman World Champion Gustav Iden.

Chartier started working with Iden in January, 2022. He burst into prominence last August when he took the win at Ironman Mont-Tremblant, then took the $100,000 first prize check at the Professional Triathletes Organisation (PTO) US Open in Dallas, Texas. At that race, Chartier put together an incredible run split despite the extreme heat that challenged most of the field.

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Sanders and Chartier trained for that event and the Ironman World Championship in Tucson, Arizona. Chartier outlined some of the incredible workouts the pair were doing leading up to both the PTO US Open and the Ironman World Championship in the ‘How they Train’ podcast earlier this year. Their intense workouts leading up to Kona were also documented on Sanders’ YouTube channel.

Sanders was emotional as he questioned Chartier’s motivation to cheat.

“We all have fucking pressure and expectations,” Sanders said. “If winning is what it’s all about then we’re all doomed. That’s not what it’s about – it’s about giving all that you have.”

“He was supposed to be at my apartment when he got popped,” Sanders continued, expressing dismay at what Chartier’s actions will do for the reputation of his coach Iden. “[Your actions] Throw everyone under the bus, too.”

This article originally appeared in Triathlon Magazine

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