‘8 Russians athletes at London Olympics doping test’
-Russian Olympic Committee
Former head of the Russian lab claims he switched tainted urine samples for clean ones at doping lab used for the Sochi Games, with help from officers of the Russian security services.
IOC announced 23 athletes from five sports and six countries failed retests with improved techniques on 265 samples from tLondon Games
IOC retests aimed at sportsmen hoping to compete at the Rio olympics – 31 athletes could be barred from this year’s games
President of the Russian Olympic Committee Alexander Zhukov
Russia’s Olympic Committee said Saturday that eight of the country’s athletes have registered positive in doping retests for the 2012 London Games.
The brief statement from the ROC did not give names or what disciplines the athletes were in, but said they came from three different sports.
It said further information would not be released until so-called “B samples” were tested that would confirm or contradict the retests. The International Olympic Committee stores Olympic doping samples for 10 years to reanalyze them when newer methods become available.
The announcement came amid heightened attention to the doping of Russian athletes.
The international track and field federation suspended Russia’s team from global competition, including the Rio de Janeiro Olympics in August, after a World Anti-Doping Agency commission report detailed state-sponsored doping. The IAAF is set to decide on June 17 whether to maintain or lift its suspension.
Earlier this week, Russian state television reported that 10 medallists from the 2008 Beijing Olympics, including 2012 high jump champion Anna Chicherova, were among 14 Russians that tested positive in the reanalysis of their doping samples.
The IOC said Friday that 23 athletes from five sports and six countries had positive findings in retests with improved techniques on 265 samples from the London Games. The IOC did not identify the athletes, their sports or their nationalities. The current retesting program targeted athletes who could be eligible to compete in Rio.
The World Anti-Doping Agency announced this month that it has appointed an independent overseer for an investigation into allegations of state-sponsored doping in the Russian team at the 2014 Sochi Olympics.
In an interview published in the New York Times, Grigory Rodchenkov, the former head of the Russian lab now living in Los Angeles, said that he switched tainted urine samples for clean ones at the doping lab used for the Sochi Games, with help from people he believed to be officers of the Russian security services.
Awarded the prestigious Order of Friendship by President Vladimir V. Putin, after Sochi, Dr. Rodchenkov had to flee Russia in November, 2015 as the World Anti-Doping Agency identified him as the linchpin in what it described as an extensive state-sponsored doping program in Russia He was accused of extorting money from athletes, as well as covering up positive drug tests and destroying hundreds of urine samples.
Rodchenkov claims , Russian officials forced him to resign after the report, fearing for his safety, he moved to Los Angeles. However, two of his colleagues died unexpectedly in February, within weeks of each other; both were former antidoping officials, one who of whom resigned soon after Dr. Rodchenkov fled the country.
The Russian olympic Committee had retested ten medalists from the 2008 Beijing Olympics, including 2012 high jump champion Anna Chicherova, were among 14 Russians that tested positive in the reanalysis of their doping samples, state television reported Tuesday. 11 of the 14 athletes oaffected were from track and field, including 4×100-meter relay gold medalist Yulia Chermoshanskaya. The others are two weightlifters and a rower.
2012 Olympic champion, Russian high jump champion Anna Chicherova, listed as one of 14 atheletes targeted by Russian federation for reanalysis
Separately, the Russian track federation said it would ban former dopers from the upcoming Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in the hope of getting its team reinstated for the games. The IAAF suspended the track federation from global competition after a World Anti-Doping Agency commission report detailed state-sponsored doping.
“No potential participant in the Olympic Games who has been caught taking banned substances in previous years can be a member of the Russian national Olympic team in Rio de Janeiro,” the federation said in a statement.
It said it took “such a tough decision with one aim – to do everything so that clean athletes could take part in the 2016 Olympic Games.”
Two Russian gold medalists in race walking, Elena Lashmanova and Olga Kaniskina, would be affected by the new rule, as would former world champion walker Sergei Kirdyapkin, who was stripped of his 2012 Olympic gold for doping. All three were due to be eligible to compete in Rio. The IAAF will rule next month whether to maintain or lift its ban.
The list of 14 also includes Chicherova, who won the high jump bronze in Beijing before winning gold at the 2012 London Games.
Silver medal winners whose doping retests reportedly came back positive are javelin thrower Maria Abakumova, 4×400 relay runners Anastasia Kapachinskaya and Tatiana Firova, and weightlifter Maria Shainova, the report said.
Bronze medalists included Ekaterina Volkova in the 3,000 steeplechase, men’s 4×400 relay team member Denis Alexeyev, race walker Denis Nizhegorodov and weightlifter Nadezhda Yevstukhina.
Russia’s Olympic silver medal winner Denis Nizhegorodov is reportedly one of 14 Russian athletes who competed in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, who tested positive in the reanalysis of their doping samples.
The IOC said last week that 31 athletes could be barred from this year’s Olympics in Rio de Janeiro after being caught in the reanalysis of Beijing samples. It said the athletes came from six sports and 12 countries, but declined to give names, citing legal reasons.
Before reallocating any medals, it would retest samples of any athletes who stand to move up in the medals.