Billionaire Bankrolls Doping-Friendly Olympics Spinoff. Could Surfing Join?

The Olympics are, famously, anti “doping” – or performance enhancing drugs (PEDs).

But Peter Thiel, a Silicon Valley billionaire, has come forth with a doping-friendly answer to the iconic Games. The Enhanced Games, aka the “Olympics on steroids” as it’s been dubbed, will allow athletes to use PEDs “out in the open and honestly.”

So, with surfing now in the original Olympics, what about this drug-friendly spinoff?

Well, SURFER reached out to the event’s organizers for comment; here’s what Thomas Dolan, Executive Operations of the Enhanced Games, told us:

“Whilst we love surfing (as Australians, it's in our DNA), the infrastructure required to host it well currently comes at too high of a cost.

“The difficulties the IOC has experienced in setting up the surfing events in Tahiti for Paris 2024 demonstrate the infrastructure challenge.

“We won't commit to surfing until we reach a point in time in which we can justifiably run the event in a manner that is practical with our low-cost yet high-octane ethos.

"We hope that the surfing world adopts the health-first approach to performance supplements, and takes measures to enshrine the right of athletes to choose what they can and can't do to their bodies.

“After all, it's your board, your body, your choice.”

Compared to other sports – such as baseball or cycling – doping hasn’t been so prominent in pro surfing. There was, however, Brazilian Championship Tour surfer Raoni Monteiro who was issued a 20-month suspension from the World Surf League after testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance at the 2014 Pipe Masters.

Per the WSL’s policy on PEDs, they state:

“Prohibited Substances, as that term is defined in this Policy, such as anabolic/androgenic steroids, banned stimulants, exogenous human or animal growth hormones, and related or similar substances, have no place in surfing.”

So, no doping in surfing…for now.


Don't miss another headline from SURFER! Subscribe to our newsletter, follow us on Instagram, and stay connected with the latest happenings in the world of surfing. We're always on the lookout for amusing, interesting and engaging surf-related videos to feature on our channels.

Whether you're a professional surfer or just an amateur, we want to see your best footage and help you share it with the world. Submit your video for a chance to be featured on SURFER and our social channels. Be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel to watch high-quality surf videos.