In his controversial book 'Anabolic Steroids: What Kind and How Many', American sports scientist Fred Hatfield (1942-2017), who was world champion powerlifts in 1981 and 1986, declared that the growth hormone hGH was 'the state of the art' in the free world when it came down to strength and size.
In 1982, the American National Football League (NFL) finally began testing its players, but the search for anabolic steroids did not start until 1987.
Professional American baseball player Timothy Raines (1959-), nicknamed 'Rock', played between 1979 and 2002 as 'left fielder' for six different teams. He was considered one of the best leadoff hitters and baserunners in baseball history. On June 29, 1982, Raines did not show up for the game against the New York Mets, he reported to the board that he had headaches and dizziness. The board sent club doctor Robert Broderick (1923-2014) to the house of Raines who found the player in a worrying state and immediately called for medical help. Research showed that Raines was heavily addicted to cocaine and that that addiction had cost him forty thousand dollars in the first nine months of that year. The doctor immediately had him admitted to the psychiatry ward.
German amateur world champion Heinz Sallmayer (1960-1982) died during his first appearance with the pros on the consequences of a heart failure, which was probably caused by his anabolic use.
On 20 January 1982 the Belgian cyclist Marc Demeyer (1950-1982) died of a heart attack.
Two days after the Tour de France Bernard Hinault (1954-), Bernard Vallet (1954-) and Jean-René Bernaudeau (1956-), the first three of the Callac Criterion, refused a doping test
as well as the two riders named Patrick Clerc (1957-) and Pierre le Bigaut (1959-). They were suspended for a month and were fined 1,100 Swiss francs. A lot of riders threatened with a boycott of the World Cup. Finally, a compromise was worked out, in which the people involved were no longer accused of anything.
During the Dutch TV program 'Reporter' Maarten Ducrot (1958-), Steven Rooks (1960-) and Peter Winnen (1957-) confessed that they had experimented with cortisone, testosterone and Synacthen since 1982.
After having tested positive for Methylphenidate in the seventeenth stage of the Vuelta, Spanish Angel Arroyo (1956-) received ten minutes penalty, he was deprived of the stage victory and dropped to thirteenth place in the standings.
Spanish riders Alberto Fernández (1955-1984), Vicente Belda (1954-) and Pedro Muñoz Machín Rodríguez (1958-) also tested positive on that product. The four denied the accusations and asked for a second analysis, which confirmed the positive.
Belgian rider Michel Pollentier (1951-) also tested positive for Methylphenidate after that seventeenth stage of the Vuelta a España.
In his book 'Massacre à la Chaîne' Willy Voet (1945-) described the Grand Prix des Nations of Dutch rider Bert Oosterbosch (1957-1989) from 2002:
"Because of the Synacts he got injected, Oosterbosch started slowly: initially the product blocked his ability to work hard, but sixty minutes after the injection it started to work as planned and Oosterbosch increased his pace."
Oosterbosch suffered from his health during his career. He was hit twice by a meningitis, with a knee injury on top. He was forced to stop his sporting career, but a few years later he returned as an amateur. In August 1989 he won his first race, but five days later he died of cardiac arrest.
Northern Irishman Alex Higgins (1949-2010) was crowned world champion in snooker twice. 'Hurricane Higgins' was not only known for his fast playing style and difficult character, but he also smoked about sixty cigarettes every day. He had a serious drinking and gambling problem and confessed that he also used cocaine and marijuana. A twenty-year trail of self-destruction ran throughout his life. As a result of his violent, drunken outbursts, he destroyed a hotel room in Australia and was even expelled from the country in India. He also regularly had conflicts with the governing bodies of snooker. When he was called for a drug test, he became extremely angry, he gave the match manager a head butt and hit three holes in the door of the players room. It gave him six games suspension and a fine of twelve thousand British Pounds. The snooker federation punished him for years with thousands of British pounds for his constant foul language and inappropriate behavior. His addiction to gambling on horse races once made him lose thirteen thousand pounds in a day. His behaviour also destroyed his two marriages.
In 1990, after his loss in the first round of the World Cup, he announced his retirement and fulminated that snooker was the most corrupt game in the world. He punched the press officer of the tournament in the stomach and threatened to shoot team captain Dennis Taylor (1949-). It gave him a years suspension. His best friends and drinking buddies were actor Oliver Reed (1938-1999) and footballer George Best (1946-2005). In 1997, esophageal cancer was diagnosed, a year later throat cancer, followed by many operations. Despite pneumonitis and respiratory problems, he continued to play. In 2009, Higgins was lonely and impoverished, living in a caravan. In April 2010, his remaining friends collected twenty thousand pounds for new dental implants, allowing him to eat normally and gain weight again. Because of the intensive radiotherapy, he had lost his teeth and he lived on liquid food. He was severely depressed and considered suicide. Because he was too ill, the implants could not be placed, because he continued to smoke and drink heavily. He was visibly losing weight and weighing 38 kilos, he survived on a weekly invalidity allowance of two hundred pounds. In July 2010 he was found dead in his caravan, a combination of malnutrition, pneumonia and throat cancer. It is estimated that during his years of success he had spent three to four million pounds of prize money.