Ben Johnson scandal 25 years later

Toronto Sun photographer Stan Behal took this photo of Ben Johnson winning gold in the 1988 Seoul...

Toronto Sun photographer Stan Behal took this photo of Ben Johnson winning gold in the 1988 Seoul Summer Games. It won the first ever National Newspaper Award of Excellence for Sports Photography and was selected as one of "100 Photos that Changed Canada."

PATRICK MALONEY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:34 AM ET

Moments after his record-setting run in the 100-metre final of the 1988 Olympics seized a global spotlight, sprinter Ben Johnson grabbed an oversized Canadian flag to wave before the world.

The gold was his.

And he was ours.

Canada — 25 years ago next week — was the world’s best in the glamour event of the Seoul Summer Games.

Just two days later, of course, Johnson sparked the first-ever global doping scandal after testing positive for steroids, leaving him stripped of his gold medal and world-record finish (9.79 seconds) while facing the scorn of a humiliated nation.

“Why, Ben, why?” was The Toronto Sun’s front-page headline as the scandal unfolded.

With next week marking a quarter-century since that dark moment, it’s time again to confront potentially uncomfortable questions relating to Johnson, doping in general and what it means to be Canadian:



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