Jeff Adams (born November 15, 1970 in Mississauga, Ontario) is a Canadian Paralympian and a six-time world champion in wheelchair sports. He has competed at six consecutive Summer Paralympics from 1988 to 2008, winning a total of three gold, four silver, and six bronze medals. At the 1988 Summer Paralympics he won two bronze medals, one in the 800m race and one in the 1500m race. Four years later at the Barcelona Games he won two silvers, one in the 800m race and one as part of the 4 × 400 m relay. At the 1996 Summer Paralympics he won gold in the 800 m, silver in the 400 m, and bronze in the 4×400 m relay. Four years later, at the Sydney games, he won five medals, a gold in the 800 m and 1500 m, a silver in the 400 m and a bronze in the 5000 m and 4x100 m. At the 2004 Paralympics he won a bronze in the 400 m race. Jeff was coached by the Swede Peter Eriksson.
He is an inductee into the Terry Fox Hall of Fame.
Adams is currently the President and CEO of Icon Wheelchairs Inc., a wheelchair manufacturing and distribution company.
Suspension and appeal
After the positive test, Adams asked for a hearing before an independent arbitrator, who determined he had committed an anti-doping violation, and that Adams should be suspended from competition for a two-year timeframe. Adams' suspension meant a loss of federal sport funding for life.
Adams filed an appeal with the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne, Switzerland, which ultimately went in his favour. A three-person arbitration panel found Adams' version of events to be true, and that the failed test was because of a contaminated piece of equipment. The panel added the athlete had been the victim of an assault at the bar and could not be held negligent or at fault, and also made an overt reference to Adams being "a person of high character".
In both the first hearing and the appeal, Adams argued unsuccessfully that the Canadian Center for Ethics in Sport (CCES) was carrying out the policy of the federal government, and was a government actor. Neither tribunal found that the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms applies to the CCES or to the manner in which Canadian athletes are drug tested.
The anti-doping rules in Canada allow athletes to be tested up to 18 months after retirement. At the end of 2009, just shy of the 18 month window, Adams was subject to two random drug tests in less than 2 months, neither of which resulted in the successful collection of a sample by the CCES. Following the second test, the CCES asserted an anti-doping violation against Adams for refusing the test. According to a December 21, 2011 ruling by SDRCC arbitrator Larry Banack, in the first attempted test, the doping control officer was accompanied by an unidentified chaperone who either refused to provide, or did not have proper identification with him. In the second test, two doping control officers were sent, one of which was Durham Police Service Detective Emmanuel Iheme. Banack noted that he did not identify himself as an off-duty police officer when he approached Adams outside his home, or when he entered his place of business. The 2011 ruling concluded that evidence provided by CCES witness', particularly that of Detective Iheme was not credible, and preferred the evidence of Adams in explaining why the sample was not provided.
After the Banack ruling in the case, Adams' lawyer Timothy Danson made an application for an award of costs. In a decision rendered on February 15, 2011, Banack agreed that the discrepancies in the testimony and evidence of the CCES was serious enough to warrant an award of costs of $40,000, which offset some but not all of over $82,000 in legal costs that Adams bore to defend himself.
Adams underwent radiation therapy for cancer as a child, and aftermath of the treatment led to a spinal injury at age 9 that paralysed him. After retiring from competition, Adams and business partner Christian Bagg launched Marvel Wheelchairs, producing adjustable wheelchairs for everyday use. After Marvel was taken over by Cervélo, a manufacturer they had partnered with, Adams and Bagg launched a new company making custom wheelchairs called ICON in 2010. An appearance on the CBC reality show Dragons' Den led to a new partnership with a manufacturer called Multimatic to produce the chairs designed by ICON president Adams, company co-founder Bagg. In 2012, Adams was a regular pundit on Channel 4's coverage of the London 2012 Paralympic games in the UK.
- "March 5 - Toronto", Vancouver 2010 official website (viewed on March 2)
- Pitt-Brooke, Jack (3 September 2012). "Jack Pitt-Brooke: Instructive and inspirational – Channel 4 strike the Paralympic balance". The Independent. Retrieved 6 September 2012.
- "LONDON 2012: Paralympic Games – Meet the C4 team". Sport On The Box. Retrieved 6 September 2012.
- Icon Wheelchairs. "None".
- "Wheelchair athlete Adams aiming for Beijing". CBC News. May 20, 2008.
- CTV.ca | Paralympian aims for Beijing after doping clearance
- CTV.ca | Wheelchair racer found guilty of doping infraction
- Banack, Larry. "Arbitrator" (PDF). SDRCC DT 10 - 0117. Retrieved 27 March 2013.
- Banack, Larry. "Arbitrator" (PDF). Retrieved 27 March 2013.
- "Jeff Adams". Management. ICON Wheelchairs. Retrieved 30 March 2012.
- Mourtada, Rasha (12 January 2012). "Canadian upstart reinvents its wheels". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 30 March 2012.
- Howell, Trevor Scott. "Christian Bagg, Co-founder of Icon Wheelchairs". Your Face Here. Fast Forward Weekly. Retrieved 30 March 2012.
- "New wheelchair called revolutionary". CBC.ca. 28 Feb 2011. Retrieved 30 March 2012.