Moscow: The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) is ready to discuss with the International Sports Press Association (AIPS) its proposal to scrap the world records list, as some of athletes may have achieved records not legitimately.
AIPS President Gianni Merlo wrote a letter to IAAF President Sebastian Coe on January 3, calling on him to "close the world record books in athletics and open new ones" as the sports world was currently witnessing "many Olympic champions being stripped of their medals, their records", reports Sputnik.
On Sunday, the AIPS published on its website a response from the IAAF.
"As to the proposal to scrap the world records list which is the core of your letter, we understand the frustrations, 'the doubts of the past' which you outline. We know that systems have in the past produced athletes that have probably not achieved records legitimately -- That said we welcome the debate," the IAAF said.
At the same time, the association stressed that "the clean athletes" who legitimately set world records were its primary focus.
"However, that's a very different thing from penalising clean athletes who have gone about breaking records based upon the hard work and dedication during their young lives, with clean coaches and clean federations -- If the records list is scrapped not only do these clean athletes risk losing their place in history, they face the implication that their records have not been achieved cleanly," the IAAF added.
The proposal to scrap world records list came as a result of the recent doping scandals and launch by the IAAF of an online portal for reporting suspicions of doping.