With the Tokyo Olympics almost upon us, the world’s best athletes are converging on Japan and it seems inevitable the topic of performance-enhancing drugs will at some point rear its head. The usual suspects – steroids, stimulants, etc. – will obviously be closely monitored, but what about other drugs, such as psychedelics, not commonly thought to be performance-enhancing?
One of the most iconic, possibly apocryphal, drug stories of the 20th century is the tale of Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Dock Ellis throwing a no-hitter while tripping on LSD in 1970. Ellis recounted his story in great detail to NPR shortly before his death, and the audio from that interview was used to create a fantastic short film.
The story goes, Ellis had been partying with friends the day before a big game. Acid, alcohol and marijuana were all involved. Upon waking from a nap, and thinking it was still the same day, Ellis took more acid before a friend informed him he was meant to pitch in a few hours.
Ellis raced to the airport, jumped on a plane, and got to the stadium around four or five hours into the acid trip. His memory of the game is blurry, unsurprisingly, and almost no footage exists from the game to easily verify the incredible story.