Nike’s chief executive says doping claims make him ‘sick’

Mark Parker mounts staunch defence of sportswear firm over damaging suggestions

Nike has come out fighting in defence of its reputation. Photograph: Getty

Nike has come out fighting in defence of its reputation. Photograph: Getty

 

Nike’s chairman and chief executive has defended himself and the sportswear company over suggestions it was connected to performance-enhancing drug violations, saying the idea the group was involved in doping “makes me sick”.

Mark Parker’s defence of the New York-listed group’s reputation came as he also stood up for Alberto Salazar, a Nike-supported athletics coach who received a four-year ban from the sport this week.

The US Anti-Doping Agency (Usada) found Mr Salazar had been “orchestrating and facilitating prohibited doping conduct” while head coach of Nike’s Oregon Project, a training programme funded by the company. Jeffrey Brown, a doctor who worked with athletes from the project, also received a four-year ban.

Following a six-year investigation by Usada, the men were found to have possessed and trafficked performance-enhancing drugs to athletes and also to have helped administer the substances in a prohibited way. – Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2019