1. What was the motivation behind joining Sport Resolutions’ panel as a specialist member?
I was very keen to join the National Anti-Doping Panel as it is an ideal way of serving sport using my past experience as an Olympian and my experience in both sport and sports medicine administration. I have been interested and involved in the development and application of doping regulations throughout my competitive and administrative career, so this was an interesting next step.
2. Has your professional experience prior to joining Sport Resolutions had an impact on the manner in which you approach sport disputes/matters?
My professional experience in General Practice has brought a real understanding of the raw realities of life and involves my intervention and assistance in the most complex and critical aspects of people's lives. Compassion, understanding and truthfulness are all crucial to both rules.
3. In your role as a National Anti-Doping Panel member, you are called upon to deal with sensitive matters. What are some of the challenges involved in the resolution of doping matters?
In my professional career we are routinely dealing with sensitive and complex issues so this aspect of the NADP work is normal for me.
4. How would you describe the difference your medical skills make to a case when appointed?
It is really important for the specialist members to bring something extra and both my experience as an Olympian in the sport of Luge and my medical skills are important in broadening the understanding of the issues and complexities of different cases. As wing members it is important that we bring that different context to the case before us.
5. What do you enjoy the most about being a Sport Resolutions specialist member?
It is really enjoyable working alongside some extremely experienced and well qualified lawyers and specialist members. It is very different to my normal working day and I get pleasure from being part of one of the world’s leading anti-doping systems. I take pride in the quality of decision making and enjoy the feeling of serving sport and supporting clean athletes.
6. Do you have any favourite sport(s)?
I have no favourite sport as I really enjoy the diversity of all the sports covered although living in the Cotswolds relatively near Cardiff I seem to have picked up a lot of rugby cases.
7. Any advice for individuals looking to get involved in the field?
I would encourage anyone with the appropriate experience and knowledge to get involved as a panel member in what is a world quality anti-doping tribunal service as the cases are diverse, the people of high quality and the decision making first class. It is an interesting and rewarding way of getting involved and giving back to UK sport.
Dr. Neil TownshendSpecialist Member
Neil Townshend is a qualified doctor working in full time general practice. He is a former British and North American Champion in the sport of luge, representing Great Britain at seven Olympic Games from 1980 to 1998 as competitor, team manager and doctor. He is also a former vice chairman of the British Olympic Association, was Chief Medical Officer of the Federation International de Luge, and is a past chairman of the National Sports Medicine Institute.