Russian doping scandal
Today the International Olympic Committee (IOC) is holding emergency talks to decide whether all Russian athletes will be banned at the Olympic games in Rio next month, due to the biggest doping scandal in the IOC’s history.
It has been revealed that there was a massive state-run doping programme of Russian athletes taking part in the Winter Olympics in the Russian ski resort of Sochi in 2014. It follows shocking findings in the McLaren report, which claims that urine samples of Russian competitors were manimpulated across the “vast majority” of summer and winter Olympic sports from late 2001 to August 2015.
The report was commissioned by the World Anti-Doping Agency, and revealed the claims by Grigory Rodchenkov (former head of Russia’s national anti-doping laboratory) that he had doped dozens of athletes over the years, including 15 Sochi 2014 medallists. The report was published earlier this week.
President Putin has condemned the allegations as being politically motivated. Nonetheless, events scheduled to be staged in Russia prior to the Rio Olympics in a couple of weeks have been stalled. Some Russian track and field athletes have already been banned from competing in Rio.
The big question facing the IOC now is whether to ban all Russian athletes. They would appear to be stalling currently. They are seeking legal advice before making their final decision in the biggest doping scandal in Olympic sporting history before imposing a possible blanket ban.
Meantime, the IOC says it is planning to retest all Russian athletes who competed in the Winter Olympics in Sochi in 2014.
This means some medals may be confiscated and others handed out if Winter Olympic athletes are disqualified. Russia topped the medal table at Sochi with a total of 33 medals (13 golds, 11 silvers and 9 bronze medals). Perhaps Team GB will now pick up some more medals?..