The university of Freiburg installed a commission to examine the role of their doctors in the recent doping scandals. It is
not the first time that sports medicine specialists of the university of Freiburg are linked with performance enhancing
drugs. At the 1952 Olympic games of Helsinki middle distance runner Joseph (Josy) Barthels won a gold medal on the 1500 meters,
a year before he was the number 41 of the world ranking. Barthels was coached by the legendary German trainer Woldemar
Gerschler,who was leading the institute of sports of the university of Freiburg, Gerschler worked together with Professor
Herbert Reindell (who worked for the university of Freiburg as well). Between 1952 and 1954, the radiologist
Oskar Wegener, who was working for Reindell at the university of Freiburg, wrote a thesis titled "The effects of performance
enhancing drugs on the circulation and performance". Wegener was an insider, the middle distance runner came to Freiburg to
prepare for the Olympic games of Helsinki with trainer Gerschler. Wegener did not start at the 1952 Olympics because of tonsillitis.
Erik Eggers, a journalist from Cologn, wrote on November 26 (2006) in the German daily newspaper Tagesspiegel a story
about the thesis of Wegener. According to Eggers the introduction of Wegeners thesis said: "Furthermore trainer Gerschler
and sports doctor Dr. Prokop reported that team attendants arrived at the olympics with mysterious substances that they gave
their athletes before the start." Gerschler and Prokop also reported that the substances did not work well for every athlete,
some did not reach their usual form. Gerschler told Wegener that one of his athletes was feeling so bad after he was
given such substances that he had difficulties to survive the races of his discipline. Four years later the same
athlete won the gold medal. More than 50 years later Wegener confirmed that this athlete was Joseph Barthels and that the
gold medal winner of Luxemburg was doped during test series for his thesis. Barthels was doped with Pervitin, a substance
that was used by the German army during the second world war. Pervitin overcomes fatigue and make people feel euphoric. Wegener
found out that athletes doped with pervitin achieved an improvement of performance of almost 25%.
Doctor Huber, doctor Schmid and doctor Heinrich are the latest doctors from Freiburg that were linked with performance
enhaning drugs, professor Herbert Reindell seems to be the first sports medicine specialist from Freiburg who doped athletes.
Between the first doping cases from more than 50 years ago and the current doping scandal there is a long list of doping cases
which are linked with doctors from the university of Freiburg. Reindells follower in Freiburg, doctor Joseph Keul started
in 1970 with the assistence of doctor Wilfried Kindermann test series to proof that steroids were harmless. According to a
conference report from 1972, Keul said: "From a medical point of view there is no concern against the use of these substances."
During the seventies several doctors from Freiburg continued with defending the use of steroids and did test series with
testosteron with nordic ski athletes. The doctors were defended by the member of the German parliament (Bundestag) Wolfgang
Schäuble. Schäuble is German interior minister nowadays and is also responsible for sports. During a debate about performance
enhanching drugs in the German Bundestag (1977) Schäuble said: "We only want to insert these substances restrictedly and only
under the absolute control of sports medical specialist (...), because apparently there are disciplines in which without the
insertion of these substances (...) we can't keep up in the world competition." At the moment Schäuble is working on a new
German anti-doping law in Germany and demands severe punishments for doped athletes.
One of the sports doctors who was involved with these test series was doctor Ernst Jakob (university of Freiburg). During
the 2006 Olympic winter games Jakob was also involved in the so-called 'Sachenbacher case'. The cross country athlete Evi
Sachenbacher was suspended for health reasons after she was tested with high haemoglobin values. Jakob insisted that
there was a natural cause for Sachenbachers high values but Sachenbacher lost her case at the international sports court
TAS/CAS. The court proved with long-time tests that the only time Sachenbacher had high haemoglobin values before was
at the 2002 Olympics. Jakob ist also team doctor of Gerolsteiner. Gerolsteiner team manager Hans Michael Holczer told
the German online portal spiegel.de: "Doctor Jakob is not controversial at cycling. He doesn't do performance diagnostics
and training plans at our team and is not as integrated like the Freiburg doctors were at T-Mobile." Jakob also worked
as a team doctor of the Bianchi team in 2003.
The state prosecution of Freiburg asked the German federal police to assist in their investigation after German professor
Werner Franke filed a complaint against Lothar Heinrich and Andreas Schmid. Maybe the investigators will uncover a larger
scandal: possible systematic doping of a public university, funded by tax money and external partners like Telekom. According
to former Telekom pro rider Bert Dietz it was Telekom who introduced the university of Freiburg to the team: "The doctors
were becoming more and more involved in our training plans, at the wish of Telekom," Dietz said during a talkshow on the German
tv station ARD.