A question about the QUARTZ Program?

Answers below. If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to ask us through our contact form.

The QUARTZ Program offers unique protection to all Athletes and Organizers while contributing to a truly CLEAN sport.

For 3 main reasons:

The very first to improve the safety of participants in competition. One of our best friends died on a trail in 2013; since then we have been fighting never to experience it again!

The second is because many athletes do not benefit from health monitoring and biology which is a great tool for detecting illnesses, of course, but also states of fatigue, overtraining, etc.

And finally because our philosophy is that of a really clean sport and that for us a lot of things are always wrong in the antidoping.

• Some drugs (substances) do not appear on the prohibited list whereas in our opinion they should be there (Ex: Tramadol…) because in addition to improve performance, they present a high risk for health.

• Misuse of Therapeutic Use Exemptions (AUT) by some athletes. Under the QUARTZ Program if an athlete is sick, he is treated and does not participate in the competition. If he participates, it is without taking any medication that can help performance.

Ex: Kilian Jornet on the UTMB 2018 who was bitten by a wasp before the race and who by personal choice and following the QUARTZ Elite Program did not want to benefit from a TUE for corticosteroids neither before the race nor during the race when his situation got worse. He preferred to give up.

• The health of the athlete is not taken into account in the antidoping
Ex: an athlete with severe anemia or hormonal pathology will not be automatically informed in the antidoping.

To event organizers, through the QUARTZ Protect and QUARTZ Event Programs as well as of course to athletes through the Health Space and the QUARTZ Elite Program.

The doctors of the medical commission and the scientific experts (Ph.D.) of the QUARTZ Program, the doctors of the event only during the duration of the competition as well as any doctor designated by the athlete (personal doctor, doctor from a team, a federation…).

No. The QUARTZ Program is managed by the Athletes For Transparency Association (AFT), created in 2006 and which is a non-profit organization.

Yes. If the QUARTZ Elite Program is based only on the volunteering of athletes, the QUARTZ Event Program is mandatory because of an article inserted in the regulation of the competition that the athlete accepts when registering.

The QUARTZ program is funded by events or circuits, sponsors and of course your donations !

Since 2015, the choice has been made  to test and develop the QUARTZ Program exclusively in the world of trail-running. Today 85 events apply the QUARTZ Protect or Event Programs, notably through the UTWT and GTWS circuits. Between 2020 and 2024, the QUARTZ Program will be extended to other sports including road running and triathlon. 

As an athlete after joining the QUARTZ Elite Program you must:

– Respect the charter of the QUARTZ Elite Program

– Complete the medical form

– Declare your doctor and technical staff if existing

– Declare your location (country / city) and your competition schedule unless you are already located in ADAMS developed by WADA

– Declare your Therapeutic Use Exemption (s) (TUE)

– Declare all the medications you use

– Submit all your doping control forms (DCF)

– Declare all the food supplements you use

– Accept all blood or capillary or urine or saliva samples requested for analyzes

Registering and completing your Health Space will take a maximum of 15 minutes. Then per month, it will take between 5 and 15 minutes to complete your location and / or the drugs and food supplements used. Each athlete from the QUARTZ Elite Program performs between 5 and 15 analyzes / year (biological and toxicological) distributed on average in 50% in competition and 50% out of competition.

The QUARTZ Event Program is fully compatible with all antidoping and Health rules of international organizations.

In its Chapter 5.8.3: “Investigations and Intelligence Gathering”, the WADA antidoping code allows « Investigate any other analytical or non-analytical information or intelligence that indicates a possible anti-doping rule violation(s) ». Biological analyze results from the QUARTZ Program can be shared with antidoping Organizations in order to target athletes; this is how the QUARTZ Event Program contributes to the antidoping.

The QUARTZ Event program fully complies for example with the World Athletics “Competition Medical Guideline”. In addition, the document “Competition and Technical rules 2020” of World Athletic indicates also in its article 6.1.4 that medical delegates « have the power to order an athlete to withdraw before, or to immediately retire from an event during, competition »; which is exactly what we do with the “no start rule” (DNS) for Health reasons of the QUARTZ Event Program.

The QUARTZ Program platform complies with the most restrictive international rules for the protection and use of personal and medical data.

-The QUARTZ Program platform is 100% compliant with Regulation (EU) 2016/679 called the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

-A Data Protection Officer (DPO) has been attached to the QUARTZ Program platform.

-The QUARTZ Program platform is 100% compliant with EU Health data protection and the French public Health code (article L.1111-8) known as Health Data Hosts (HDS) .

-The QUARTZ Program platform is 100% compliant with other national regulations, such as the US HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act).

Blood, urine, hair and saliva samples can be taken as part of the QUARTZ Event or QUARTZ Elite Programs. Biological (medical profile) or toxicological (research for drugs or substances) analyzes can then be carried out on these samples.

The profiles are classified according to the following 4 categories: “normal”, “with potential disease”, “atypical” and “abnormal”.

It means that everything is fine. The athlete can continue to practice his sport without problem.

This means that the biological values are showing a potential disease. Additional analyzes may be necessary. Depending on the values observed, the athlete may be advised not to start the race.

This means that the biological values are outside laboratory standards and that we do not have a history to verify whether this is normal or not. Additional analyzes are necessary. Depending on the values observed, the athlete may be advised not to start the race.

This means that the biological values are outside the laboratory standards and / or present inconsistencies with previous results. Additional analyzes may be necessary as well as an anti-doping control. The athlete will not be allowed to start the race (“no start rule”).

Yes. If the athlete’s health check shows a severe medical problem, he may not be allowed to start the race whether the cause is illness or potentially doping.

The QUARTZ Program Medical Commission can go as far as proposing to the race Director the exclusion of a participant from competition for Health reasons. The final decision belongs to the Organizer.

The doping control uses antidoping’s standards  while the QUARTZ Program uses medical biology’s standard. When you go for a urinary analysis in a laboratory you are allowed to urinate on your own and your bottle is not sealed. The advantage with the QUARTZ Program is that we can do the same sample / test several times following the results, which is not the case during a doping control.

Biological analyzes with more than 150 markers make it possible to draw up a profile of athletes. The toxicological analyzes make it possible to verify that the drugs possibly declared by the athlete correspond to those found in his body.

The athlete can receive a request for a “home analysis” to be carried out in the laboratory of his choice. The athlete performs the requested analysis and the results are sent by the laboratory to the QUARTZ Program team who then make the payment. Only designated doctors or experts have access to health data and give an opinion on the athlete’s analysis results.

Yes. However, it sometimes happens that laboratories refuse most of the time for financial reasons (payment after the analyzes) to carry out the analyzes; this is particularly the case in the USA.

The standards of biological analysis laboratories make it a legal obligation to verify the identity of a patient. However, if a doped athlete tries to send another person to the laboratory, the difference in the biological profile between this “Home analysis” and an “On-site analysis” just before a competition where the athlete’s identity is guaranteed would generate an “Abnormal” profile. Other checks are possible remotely such as blood grouping and phenotyping tests.

These are the same laboratories that all year round provide results to millions of patients and doctors around the world. Unlike doping controls, in case of “Abnormal profile”, it is always possible to carry out exactly the same analysis. The results of these analyzes are therefore perfectly reliable.

No. The laboratory must send the invoice to the QUARTZ program team, which is responsible for payment by transfer. However it sometimes happens that the laboratory asks for immediate payment; this is then done by the athlete who is refunded within 15 days by transfer.

Yes too. The QUARTZ Program is the tool that allows you to justify that you practice your sport without medication or medical procedures. And so of course if you don’t take any medication or use methods, you’r a clean athlete.

The QUARTZ Program contributes to doping-free sport by educating athletes in good sport practices: “a medication is made to treat and not to perform”. It builds a profile for each athlete and makes easy to identify possible variations in relation to:
– Medical condition (desease)
– Training conditions (altitude, fatigue, overtraining, …)
– Doping

Yes. The QUARTZ Program makes it possible both to alert the authorities, in case of an abnormal profile, but also to educate athletes (prevention).

Yes. The QUARTZ Program and an anti-doping control are two independent actions, which can be complementary. For example, if an abnormal profile is detected from the QUARTZ Program, the medical commission alerts the competent authorities (National Anti-Doping Organizations (NADOs), International Federation).

No. The analyzes carried out in the QUARTZ Program use international standards of medical biology, different from those of the antidoping.

The use of doping substances and / or methods has biological consequences on the body that can be identified in the QUARTZ Program. The identified abnormal profiles are then reported to the competent authorities and a “no start rule” can be applied.

Faced with the question of doping, a “clean” athlete or a doped athlete will have the same answer: “we are regularly submitted to doping controls”; nothing then makes it possible to distinguish them.

The online display of the data collected is a key element that can allow an athlete to go a little further in a process of transparency. This option for the QUARTZ Elite Program only is a choice of the athlete. It can be activated or deactivated freely by the athlete. This is not mandatory; only a possible option..

However, the data collected are displayed. with a delay of one month. For example, in July 2019 only data up to June 2019 will be displayed to all if the option is selected.

Athlete For Transparency
03 cours Herbouville
69004 Lyon


+33 4 82 33 55 90