Anti-doping officials, athlete groups request entire Russian delegation is barred from Rio Olympics
Anti-doping officials from at least 10 nations and 20 athlete groups will request that the entire Russian delegation be barred from the Summer Olympics over allegations of a state-sponsored doping program, according to the The New York Times.
The anti-doping officials and athletes were expected to pressure Olympic leaders on the matter in the next few days, awaiting results from an investigation into claims of a state-sponsored doping program conducted by Russian officials at the 2014 Sochi Olympics.
Grigory Rodchenkov, Russia’s former anti-doping lab director, told The Times in May that he followed government orders to cover up the widespread use of performance-enhancing drugs by dozens of Russian Olympians at the Sochi Games. At least 15 of them won medals, he said.
Russia’s three-man team for the Olympic road race was announced in late June — Ilnur Zakarin, Sergei Chernetskiy, and Pavel Kochetkov, all of Katusha.
Zakarin won a stage of the 2015 Giro d’Italia, and was chasing a top GC finish at this year’s race when he crashed on a descent and broke his collarbone. Kochetkov is the newly crowned Russian road race champion, while Chernetskiy won the national time trial championship.
In 2009, before he’d turned 20, Zakarin tested positive for methandienone, an anabolic steroid, and was sidelined for two years.
Russia’s sole woman selected for the road events is 2012 double bronze medalist Olga Zabelinskaya, who returned to the sport last year after an 18-month ban for doping.
Zabelinskaya took bronze in the road and TT events in London, but tested positive for octopamine in 2014. The Russian Federation cleared her of the case in 2015, but settled with the UCI when the international federation took the case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
Tatyana Antoshina, a road racer in Russia’s national squad considered the likely reserve for Zabelinskaya, was provisionally suspended earlier this month after failing a drug test.
Antoshina, who races for Astana and has won multiple Russian national road and time-trial events, tested positive for GHRP-2, a drug which stimulates the body’s production of growth hormone, in a test taken May 31.
The opening ceremony in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, takes place on August 5.